Honoris and MANCOSA Showcase Strength Of Employer Partnerships at South Africa’s HR Indaba

This week, at Africa’s largest HR conference and Expo, HR Indaba, Honoris Group CEO, Dr. Jonathan Louw, and MANCOSA’s Director of HR & Employability, Lutfiya Adam, addressed HR and business leaders from some of the continent’s largest employers alongside co-sponsors Sage, Workday, Microsoft and Discovery.

As new technologies and the pace of change in industry continue to soar, PwC finds that globally, 63% of CEOs are concerned about the availability of key skills in the talent pipeline, and in Africa, 50% of employers state that job seekers’ skills do not match their needs. This was one focus area of the annual event, with leaders discussing how to harness Africa’s demographic dividend to ensure that graduates entering the workforce are equipped with the 21st century skills, technical, digital, and soft skills, to thrive amidst the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Navigating the talent market with success requires strategic forward-thinking and collaboration. That’s why Honoris and its member institutions such as Durban-based MANCOSA, work in partnership with industry to increase skills development to elevate future leaders and upskill the current workforce across the continent. Honoris currently employs 38 Full-Time Employees dedicated to improving the employability of its students, supported by 23 physical and digital career centers offering sector-specific and employee-focused talent sourcing, recruitment support, and a range of work-integrated learning activities and services.

The pan-African network holds more than 700 partnerships with employers and the wider job-market ecosystem through three streams:

  • Firstly, understanding their needs as employers in order to develop market-driven curricula
  • Secondly, building sustainable relationships for student placement for internships and jobs
  • And thirdly, contributing to organizational learning & development plans to upskill or reskill the current workforce

The network creates bespoke approaches to reshape the future of learning and create new academic models, preparing students for the transition from academia to the workplace. For instance, the Honoris 21st Century Skills Certificate was the first transversal program that embeds the key digital and soft skills required for the new world of work – a fully online programme that trains learners in the eight skills most in demand by employers and for the future of work: behavioral intelligence, critical thinking, creativity and design thinking, communication, collaboration, coding, data analytics, and entrepreneurship. Whilst technological innovations such as virtual and/or augmented reality or simulation allow Honoris learners to live interactive and immersive experiences, physical or virtual, in order to be better prepared for the real world.

Programs like these are supported by ensuring that Honoris provides the infrastructure for students to thrive, including a number of centers of excellence in Business Education, Health and Engineering, and IT and recently in Digital & Creative Arts, combining the delivery of online and in-person education with state-of-the-art learning environments.

Employer partnerships span various key industry sectors such as IT, accounting, banking, insurance, health, retail, manufacturing, and telcos, both at the entry-level access from the point of school leavers, and current employers too, because companies that fail to invest in reskilling and/or upskilling run the risk of losing talent to other businesses that do offer those opportunities.

Across the continent, Honoris nurtures partnerships with international companies operating on a pan-African scale, through institutional partnerships with corporates such as EY, Accenture, Huawei, Microsoft, and Toyota all working in close partnership to source the brightest talent from across the continent.

Honoris United Universities stands as the talent partner of choice for Africa to continually shape and curate a talent pipeline that is fit for the future.