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Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Microsoft Employability Platforms bet on creating 100,000 job opportunities by the end of the year

Microsoft is aiming to create over 100,000 job opportunities and reach over seven million people across the Middle East and Africa by the end of the year through its Employability Platforms, in partnership with organisations from public and private sectors, as well as NGOs.

Launched in 2012, the YouthSpark Employability Platform for the first time provides job-seekers with end-to-end career guidance, upskilling, job-matching and mentorship – all centred on a free online hub that brings the best resources together in a bold attempt to address unemployment and underemployment.

In the MENA region the platform is called Ta3mal (“works” in Arabic) and is a partnership between Microsoft and Silatech, a non-profit organization supporting youth access to employment across the Arab world.

“Unemployment in Africa and the Middle East is not a new issue, but its scope is growing with the youth bulge and economic downturn worldwide and we need to find new solutions to address this problem,” says Ali Faramawy, Corporate Vice President of Microsoft Middle East Africa (MEA).

Microsoft’s solution, in the form of its Employability Platforms, has landed in markets including Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Iraq, Qatar, Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Kenya, South Africa, Botswana, Algeria, Ghana, Palestine and Turkey and will expand to 21 countries across MEA including Tanzania, Pakistan, Mozambique, Angola, Zimbabwe, Madagascar and Mauritius. To date, the YouthSpark employability platform has reached 5.8 million youth with a target of reaching 7 million by the end of FY15. In addition, 69,000 job opportunities have been posted on the job search tool against 100,000 job openings goal to be reached by the end of the year.


Silatech Chief Programs Officer Martin Roeske commented on the partnership, saying “The Ta3mal  network of Employability Platforms across MENA shows what we can do when NGOs and the private sector join strengths and resources together to achieve real impact.”

“Part of the unemployment problem is caused by a lack of economic opportunity, as well as the fact that graduates from secondary and tertiary institutions lack the skills required by employers,” says Faramawy. “But there is no shortage of determination and even in a country like Iraq that has been faced with some dire situations, our platform has helped put 30 000 youths into jobs in the past 14 months.”

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