Overcoming the challenges facing SA in Workers’ Month
How to overcome the challenges facing SA in Workers’ Month
On Workers’ Day this year, South Africans again had to face up to the country’s key economic and social challenges – how to create jobs and reduce unemployment.
So what role can business play to resolve these challenges? Sure, profits are important, but the business sector can make a bigger contribution to society. Business plays an important role by introducing new ideas to the market, which helps it to grow. But innovative, growing businesses help to create new jobs and contribute to economic progress, which improves the lives of workers and the general populace.
According to the International Finance Corporation, one of South Africa’s major development prospects is to build small enterprises that contribute to the economy and create jobs. Small businesses employ between 50%-60% of the country’s workforce and account for about 34% of GDP. https://www.ifc.org/wps/wcm/connect/industry_ext_content/ifc_external_corporate_site/financial+institutions/resources/msme-opportunity-south-africa
Small businesses are a national asset that should be cultivated, encouraged and rewarded. They aid in job creation by providing people with paying jobs. SMMEs give people the opportunity to develop their skills through on-the-job training and experience. They develop new technologies, goods and services which help to accelerate economic growth. In short, small businesses create jobs, generate incomes and open up new market opportunities.
Supporting SMME development initiatives is a key area in which mining can make a significant difference. The capacity of local enterprises to deliver goods and services to neighbouring mines can be boosted through community-based SMMEs and provide further opportunities to create employment. INSITE’s dashboard and bespoke trend reports are available to guide supplier development programmes.
Unemployment in South Africa reached new highs at the end of 2021, equating to more than 7.9 million individuals between October and December 2021. The construction and manufacturing industries seemed to be the hardest-hit.
And mining was not spared – the unemployment rates in this sector, which were published in the Minerals Council facts and figures 2021 report, showed that employment in the chrome ore industry decreased by 3.5%, it declined by 6.7% in the non-ferrous metals industry and dropped by 7.5% in the diamond industry. INSITE by MTS can help to identify employee gaps in a mine to assist management in finding the correct number of people to employ and the right employees to upskill.
The mining sector can also play a role in mitigating the negative impacts of unemployment by growing its role in local job creation. It can upskill local communities and then place trained individuals in an active job placement programme. INSITE can help mines leverage their skills development and in-house training programmes to develop a future-fit workforce in their mining communities. Preferential recruitment from local communities is also a key commitment in a mine’s social and labour plan.
MTS realises that what we provide to communities to help them overcome obstacles is a key value of our business. We recognise that in these trying times, people are doing the best they can to get by and we remain committed to helping them improve the quality of their lives.
We know that it takes time to provide meaningful value – it’s something that must be repeated over and over. So we are committed in our efforts to helping others or we risk abandoning them to an uncertain future. And nothing could be more damaging to people who are genuinely trying to succeed in life. Meet us at www.mts.co.za to see how we can help.