When outsourcing grows local skills
DEVELOPMENT| Aug. 16, 2012, 9:57 a.m.
It might be argued that outsourcing specialised software engineering work to an Indian supplier could take away from local skills development and job opportunities.
But nothing could be further from the truth, says Indian IT outsourcing giant Zensar Technologies. Zensar, which has been very active in South Africa for several years, provides IT outsourcing services to the South African market and not only brings software developers and engineers from India to service immediate needs and scale, but also invests heavily into sustainable local skills development to create a balanced mix across shores.
Harish Lala, VP and Regional Business Head for Africa at Zensar, points out that it’s a matter of servicing the IT needs of the business in an environment where supply of skilled resources is not enough.
“Businesses focus on their core activities and outsource non core activities to specialist IT service Providers like Zensar, who then leverage on their capabilities across various countries to bring in the scale, efficiency and quality needed by its clients. But simply bringing the skills from overseas is not going to solve this long term challenges of not having enough skills in the country”, he says.
To create a long term sustainable model, businesses & IT service providers need to come together and develop local skills which cannot be done by academia alone. We need collaboration between academia, IT service providers as skills alignment agents and end user industry, to not only develop skills but generate meaningful employment to generate momentum. That’s what Zensar’s model is, to create that platform and bring all parties together to ensure a sustainable skills development agenda, Lala says.
“For the past 18 months, we have been sourcing suitable graduates from local universities, based on their skills and the needs of our clients. They then undergo training and spend six months in India, where they are exposed to off-shoring processes and culture. They come back employable and enter a work environment within our clients’ operations. And all this is done in collaboration with our clients.”
Zensar has its own development centre in Rivonia, South Africa, where local graduates are also trained and later on work to support the businesses. As Zensar expands its operations into the rest of Africa, this development centre will serve as offshore centre for those countries and gradually the same model will be rolled out there too.
Around 100 graduates are absorbed into this system every year. While the programme does require an investment, it isn’t a charitable exercise, but a business model, says Lala.
“These graduates are now employable, and they generate revenue for the company,” says Lala.
Lala feels that more South African companies could benefit from this model. “Developing skills is everyone’s responsibility,” he says.
MORE DEVELOPMENT NEWS
Airtel enables students in Siaya County to freely access learning materials onlineBharti Airtel now provides free data connectivity to Sigweng Karuoth Primary School in Siaya County, Kenya, as part of its efforts to support Kenya’s education system. Read More
Nescafe inspires African bloggers at Start Conference 2014The Nescafe Start Conference 2014 has ended in Accra with a call on young tech entrepreneurs to use their creative ideas and skills to generate innovative business enterprises that would help create job opportunities. Read More
Huawei Ghana refurbishes Accra Central LibraryHuawei Ghana has officially presented a new state of the art library to the Minister of Communication, Dr. Edward Omane Boamah, on behalf of the Ghana Library Authority. Read More
Vodafone Ghana Foundation ends 2014 with “Bring a Cheer to Your Community” CampaignVodafone Ghana says it is receiving proposals from Non Governmental Organisations whose focus is on contributing to the quality of life in rural communities across the country. Read More
Schneider Electric announces creation of Algerian-French centre of excellenceSchneider Electric has announced the signing of a three-way partnership agreement with the Algerian Ministry for Vocational Training and Education and the French Ministry for National Education for Education and Research. Read More
MTN Ghana Foundation marks seven years of CSI in GhanaMTN Ghana Foundation is marking seven years of outstanding and impactful Corporate Social Investments in Ghana. Read More
ICTs: Gabon tops Francophone AfricaMany analysts were hoping that countries such as Senegal and Morocco would top the French-speaking list in the ITU's 2014 ICT Development Index (IDI). But it was not to be because oil-rich and less populated Gabon grabbed the gold medal. Read More
45 learners graduate from Dimension Data Saturday SchoolDimension Data, the USD6 billion ICT solutions and services provider, has announced that 45 learners have graduated from its innovative Saturday School Programme. Read More
African telcos partner with AU to ‘kick Ebola out of Africa’Telecommunication companies across Africa have united to partner with the African Union (AU) Commission to garner resources in support of Ebola affected countries in West Africa. Read More
AfDB grants €176 million for next phase of Africa's largest solar power stationThe Board of Directors of the African Development Bank Group has approved one loan of €100 million and another of US $119 million for phase II of the Ouarzazate solar complex project (the NOORo II and NOORo III power stations). Read More
FEATURED STORYPWC: Optimism abounds but a bumpy journey ahead for some
PwC’s ‘Capital Projects & infrastructure in East Africa, Southern Africa and West Africa,’ report says infrastructure spend in the region is projected to reach $180bn per annum by 2025.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHAfrica lags on digital migration
Only three African countries have so far completed the digital migration process, and serious issues are hampering the migration in other nations.