An answer to youth unemployment

Photo: Facebook MAKING THE EFFORT: Young people develop their technology skills at The Digital Academy in Johannesburg.

The Digital Academy in Joburg CBD is offering software development skills to jobseekers who want a better chance to find employment.

Youth unemployment is at an all-time high and large corporates have a role to play with government in how this problem is going to be tackled.

The academy runs a Rapid Development Programme for young and unrefined talented South Africans and Africans. It gives them the opportunity to test their ability to survive in a work simulated environment for four or six months.

“We create a ‘real’ workplace that simulates the realities and pressures of the organisational cultures they’ll be exposed to should they be placed there,” said Gary Bannatyne, managing director and co-founder of The Digital Academy.

Of all graduates that are placed out of The Digital Academy, 93 per cent of them are converted into permanent or fixed-term contracts with the academy’s partners.

“The fact of the matter is that there is a shortage of software and digital skills as most corporates are evolving into digital companies. There is a disconnect between what academic institutions are providing and from what the corporate world is looking for. The Digital Academy is about making sure our graduates add commercial value as employees,” said Bannatyne.

“Our partners are incredible. We need more though. We need to have more exposure and create more impact for so many more people. We are capable of so much more.”

The academy is confident that their model of transferring skills is going to change the way we source talent for the workplace. This will provide huge opportunities to the youth and decrease the attrition rate for corporates bringing in grassroots skills.

Bannatyne said the model stands true and that the academy is moving aggressively into a variety of skills such as big data, cyber, networking, robotics and design-orientated needs such as animation, gaming as well as UI/UX skills.

Read: Social media – A potential gateway to unemployment

Edited by Stacey Woensdregt

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