South Africa has been plagued by chronic unemployment rates in recent years. Youth unemployment rates are even more alarming, leading to increased levels of frustration and impatience among the youth.
This means that government and the private sector need to devise more creative ways in order to curb unemployment in South Africa.
The current state of unemployment in South Africa:
There is a high jobless rate
The unemployment rate is South Africa currently stands at 28%. In addition to companies not being able to fill positions due to a lack of technical skills which are in high demand, there are a range of other factors that contribute towards unemployment in South Africa. For instance, the cost of job-seeking can be quite high while geographical location may also have an effect on the ability to find employment. Individuals in metropolitan areas have better prospects of employment compared to individuals in rural areas.
More and more young people have given up looking for work
A disheartening fact is that more young people have given up seeking employment. Having a matric certificate or even a tertiary education qualification is no longer a guarantee of entry into the labour market.
Evolving nature of the labour market
The labour market is constantly changing, meaning that individuals looking for employment need to keep abreast of these changes by constantly upskilling. The types of skills in demand are also changing.
Mismatches between the skills needed in the labour market and those provided through the educational system
Many graduates are not sufficiently equipped with the types of skills required by many organisations. Skills in the fields of engineering, medicine and accounting continue to be in high demand, while most graduates in South Africa are skilled in “soft” vocations.
High demand for skilled labour
More organisations are seeking individuals with a particular skill set.
How to curb unemployment in South Africa:
- Encouraging employers to review their recruitment criteria
- Help young people access information about jobs
- Government should have the youth involved in discussions on policies and on how to implement them
- Entrepreneurship should be encouraged, along with practical business education