Demand for blue-collar, tech jobs on the rise – Jobberman

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Kwaku Agbesi, Jobberman Ghana's new CEO.

Human Resources recruitment firm Jobberman witnessed a net increase in job listings on its platform by employers despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, acting CEO of its Ghanaian operations Kwaku Agbesi has revealed.

Demand for blue-collar jobs – plumbers, electricians and drivers – he said, is responsible for the phenomenon, following a significant dip in listings when the pandemic broke out in the country during March.

Elaborating on this, he mentioned that his outfit introduced the ‘Unity in Adversity’ initiative, which waived the listing fee for jobs on the Jobberman platform in a bid to cushion and encourage prospective employers. He added that the initiative was to run for three months beginning in April, but has been extended to end of September as the pandemic persists.

“There was a reduction in the number of jobs that were being put on our platform initially, because we were still asking customers to pay for the listings; but as time went on, around end of March we saw a drop. But when we introduced the initiative, we realised that there were more postings.

“After the dip, we realised there was a rise in the number of new companies that had come to us. We also saw a rise in the number of job seekers as some were laid-off, unfortunately, due to COVID-19. So, we saw a rise in demand from prospective employers and employees.

“If I had to put figures to it, I’d say in Ghana we saw an about-30% rise in the number of companies that were advertising with us; and for the jobseekers, I’d say there was an about-15 to 20% rise from where we were pre-COVID-19.

“We’ve realised that there are more blue-collar job requests in the system at the moment: people looking for factory workers, drivers, electricians. With these kinds of blue-collar employment opportunities, we saw a huge rise in them. In terms of the white-collar jobs, there was a dip. Overall, there was a net increase in job requests… For every job listing on our platform, we get on average 200 to 250 applications,” he revealed.

Commenting on the future of work – as the data on employer demands are pointing to – he indicated that possessing Information and Communications Technology (ICT) skills has become non-negotiable, even for blue-collar jobs.

“There’s enough evidence to suggest that we’ll continue to see an increase in demand for tech-inclined jobs and people who are tech-savvy. COVID-19, it seems, is going to be here for a while; at least, until a vaccine is found. The world isn’t going to be the way it was pre-COVID-19 and tech will drive a lot in the foreseeable future, as there’ll be less physical interactions between humans.

“We expect to see a lot of demand for and innovation of Fintech solutions, as there’ll be more cashless transactions. But the use of Tech is not limited to white-collar jobs; even blue-collar employees can use ICT skills to set themselves apart from the wider pool of persons offering similar services.”

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