SAP Skills for Africa launches first East African chapter with participation from Kenya, Rwanda, Uganda, Ethiopia

The participants of SAP Skills for Africa programme.

SAP Skills for Africa recently launched its first-ever East African programme at an event held in Nairobi, Kenya. Skills for Africa is a skills development initiative between SAP Africa, its customers, and various public and private sector partners. It focuses on training and certifying graduates in a broad spectrum of SAP software and business solutions and applications, and securing opportunities for placement at regional SAP partner and customer organizations.
According to Meena Confait, head of Skills for Africa at SAP Africa, this year features the first expanded East African programme with the participation of partners and customers from Kenya as well as Ethiopia, Uganda and Rwanda. “In 2013 and 2014, we provided training for 130 graduates in Kenya. In our expanded 2017 programme, we shall be able to train 55 candidates of which 40% are female. This builds on our organisational goal of promoting diversity in the workplace, and makes a significant contribution to unlocking the latent potential of Africa’s sizeable female population.”
Since its inception in 2012, SAP Skills for Africa has made an invaluable contribution to the development of the world’s potentially largest talent pool by providing training and industry job placements for more than 400 consultants. “To support the growth and success of Africa’s critical (small and medium enterprises) SMEs sector, we are proud to announce that the curriculum for East Africa now includes SAP Business One, which is already used by more than 55,000 companies to streamline processes ranging from accounting to CRM supply chain management. This is one of the key success factors for the initiative: the focus on ensuring that graduates learn the most relevant and business-critical skills that will immediately make them valuable contributors to the success of the partner and customer companies where they are placed.”
The launch of this year’s East African programme was held at the Kenya School of Government and brought together key role-players in the public and private sectors as well as academia.
“Kenya has over the past few years made digital skills development a national priority, with a range of initiatives driven by a number of government agencies and aimed at inspiring an affinity for technology from school level all the way to business and government. The Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Authority is a state corporation that was established in 2013 to rationalize and streamline the management of all the ICT functions of the government of Kenya ,” says Robert Mugo, the acting CEO, ICT Authority.
“With ICT underscored as an economic pillar in Kenya’s Vision 2030, it is vital that we invest in the development of professional ICT skills through structured engagements with industry and public sector to ascertain what skills are required to run profitable businesses. This is what makes the SAP Skills for Africa scholarship very strategic for us. We are thankful to SAP for considering the Presidential Digital Talent (PDTP) Interns in this 3rd Class,” emphasizes Eng. Victor Kyalo, the Principal Secretary Ministry of ICT.
SAP Skills for Africa is supported by regional partners that include key role-players from the government, business and academia. Placement of graduates is done at SAP partner and customer organisations, which this year include: EIM Solutions, Bluekey Seidor, Acetek Software, Techbiz Africa, Izon Future Systems, Leanity Dynamics, Advance One, Bidco Africa, Lasso Group Technologies, TTCS / EOH; Phillips Pharma Group, Kenblest Group, EEU, Kenafric Industries, Piotech, IBSL, and Fairfax Technologies.
According to Dr Gilbert Saggia, the managing director, SAP East Africa, this year’s initiative has already secured commitments from SAP partners and customers to place every one of the graduates from the current intake. “Nothing is more important to the future success of the African continent than unlocking the potential of its immense youthful talent pool. We thank our public and private sector partners for their support in ensuring we produce the practical digital skills that will drive Africa’s economic engine in the coming decades.”
The 2017 East Africa programme concludes in September 2017, followed by another chapter in South Africa, in the fourth quarter of this year



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