Africa is a goldmine of tech talents that are solving the global tech talent shortage. This white paper, explores the potential of Africa as a source of tech talent and the benefits of hiring developers from the continent.
BY Fortress Ndebueze · 4 MIN READ
With a rapidly growing technology sector and a young and dynamic workforce, Africa is emerging as a goldmine of tech talent that could help solve the global tech talent shortage. In this white paper, we will explore the potential of Africa as a source of tech talent and the benefits of hiring developers from the continent.
The Current Global Tech Talent Shortage
Image Source: Grid Dynamics
The current global tech talent shortage has become a growing concern for many companies worldwide. The rapid pace of technological advancement has led to a significant increase in the demand for skilled tech professionals. However, the supply of tech talent has been unable to keep up with the demand, creating a major shortage.
According to a recent report by Korn Ferry, a global management consulting firm, the tech talent shortage is projected to reach 4.3 million workers by 2030. This is mainly because the number of tech jobs is growing faster than the number of people entering the industry.
The shortage of tech talent has also resulted in increased salaries and benefits for tech professionals, making it more difficult for smaller companies to compete with larger companies for talent. In addition, companies are increasingly turning to outsourcing and offshoring to fill the gap in tech talent, which can be expensive and come with its own set of challenges.
The demand for skilled tech talent has skyrocketed as the world becomes increasingly digital. Despite the global tech talent shortage, one region offers significant potential as a source of tech talent – Africa. With a rapidly growing population and a large pool of young, educated, and tech-savvy individuals, Africa has the potential to be a game-changer in the tech industry.
According to a report by the World Economic Forum, Africa’s youth population is set to double by 2030, making up 42% of the world’s youth population. Additionally, African countries are investing heavily in building a robust digital economy and creating supportive ecosystems for startups and tech companies.
Image Source: Google | Accenture
The size of the tech talent pool in Africa is growing rapidly, and according to a 2021 study of software developers in Africa, there are just over 700,000 software developers on the continent. This represents a significant increase from just a few years ago, and the number is expected to continue to rise.
Nigeria, Egypt, and South Africa have the largest tech talent pools, while Kenya, Morocco, and Ghana are also emerging as important players. There is a strong focus on upskilling Africa’s next generation of tech talent with initiatives such as coding boot camps and online learning platforms in a bid to bridge the skills gap and provide more opportunities for Africans to pursue careers in tech.
For instance, the African Union has launched the Digital Transformation Strategy for Africa, which aims to create a single digital market across the continent and promote digital skills development. However, the African tech talent landscape is not without its challenges in infrastructure, reliable internet connectivity, electricity, funding, and regulatory frameworks.
Image source: Generalist
While Silicon Valley has traditionally been viewed as the epicenter of tech innovation, Africa is quickly emerging as a significant player in the global tech scene with many startups, innovation hubs, and tech. According to a report by Disrupt Africa, the number of tech hubs in Africa has grown by over 40% in the past two years alone.
These hubs offer resources, mentorship, and support for tech entrepreneurs and startups looking to tap into the continent’s rapidly growing tech talent pool by offering access to resources, mentorship, and networking opportunities. Some of Africa’s most notable tech hubs include the iHub in Kenya, the CcHub in Nigeria, and the Silicon Cape Initiative in South Africa.
These tech hubs provide a platform for African tech entrepreneurs to develop and showcase their innovations for international companies to tap into Africa’s tech talent pool.
Hiring tech talent from different locations has become increasingly common in today’s interconnected and globalized world. As a result, Africa is emerging as a promising destination for companies looking to expand their talent pool with its rapidly growing tech ecosystem and a pool of highly skilled developers.
In this section, we will explore the advantages of hiring developers from Africa, shedding light on the unique strengths they bring to the table. From their technical expertise to their problem-solving abilities and cultural diversity, African developers offer a range of benefits that can enrich any tech team and contribute to the success of businesses in today’s competitive landscape.
One of the significant advantages of hiring devs from Africa is the cost-effectiveness it offers. Compared to other regions, Africa generally has a lower cost of living, which translates to more competitive salary expectations for skilled tech professionals. As a result, hiring African tech talent often brings significant cost advantages compared to their counterparts in Western countries.
Companies can allocate their budgets more efficiently by tapping into the talent pool available in Africa. Here are a few incentives for hiring African tech talents:
These cost advantages allow companies to stretch their budgets and potentially hire more developers for the same investment, creating opportunities for scaling and growth. Moreover, many African countries offer tax incentives and government initiatives to promote the development of their tech industries. These incentives can further reduce operational costs and make hiring African tech talent attractive for companies seeking to optimize their resources.
Image Source: Tunga developers in Lagos on a client visit
As the demand for skilled developers continues to rise, companies are increasingly looking to Africa as a potential source of tech talent. However, like any global hiring strategy, unique challenges come with hiring developers from Africa. This section will explore some of these challenges and discuss strategies to overcome them for successful remote collaboration.
One of the primary challenges in hiring developers from Africa is the availability and reliability of internet connectivity and infrastructure. Limited access to high-speed internet in some regions can result in communication and productivity issues. However, it’s essential to recognize that the perception of connectivity and infrastructure challenges in Africa may not accurately reflect the diverse technological advancements, including several fiber options, the introduction of 5G connections for regular Wi-Fi, and the recent addition of Elon Musk’s Starlink in the continent. To overcome this, companies invest in tools and technologies that support low-bandwidth connections, provide necessary resources to improve internet access and establish effective communication channels.
Time zone differences can pose a challenge for remote collaboration with African developers, especially when working on real-time projects or requiring immediate communication. Effective project management and clear communication protocols are crucial to address this challenge. In addition, companies should establish agreed-upon working hours and ensure that there is sufficient overlap for meetings and collaboration. While time zone differences can be a consideration, it’s important to note that many countries in West Africa share the same time zone as Europe, which can facilitate smoother communication and collaboration than commonly perceived.
Cultural differences and communication styles can impact effective collaboration. Understanding and appreciating cultural nuances is essential to foster a positive and inclusive work environment. Encouraging open communication, promoting cultural diversity, and providing cultural sensitivity training can help bridge these gaps and promote effective teamwork.
While Africa has a growing tech talent pool, finding developers with specific skills or expertise required by a company can be challenging. Therefore, companies should invest in comprehensive talent-sourcing strategies, partner with local tech communities, and provide opportunities for upskilling and training to align the skills of African developers with their specific requirements.
There may be biases and misconceptions about hiring developers from Africa that can hinder opportunities for African talent. Therefore, companies should actively challenge these biases by promoting diversity and inclusion, highlighting success stories of African developers, and showcasing the benefits of hiring from Africa, such as cultural diversity and unique perspectives.
As Africa continues to establish itself as a flourishing hub of technology and innovation, businesses worldwide are increasingly recognizing the value of hiring software developers from the continent. As a result, African countries are home to a growing pool of skilled developers who possess diverse expertise and a passion for technology.
This section will explore effective strategies for hiring software developers from Africa, enabling organizations to tap into the continent’s talent and drive global success.
Image Source: Tunga Developer
Portpay, is a leading provider of digital solutions for maritime tracking and traffic improvement. By leveraging Tunga’s vetting process and extensive talent pool, Portpay quickly found a project manager and developers who aligned with their specific requirements.
The collaboration resulted in accelerated product development, cost savings, and enhanced productivity. Click here to learn more about this success story.
MindRight is a US-based technology company. Its mission is to advance health equity by making mental health care radically accessible. And inclusive of communities of color and low-income families., MindRight tapped into Tunga’s network to recruit highly competent African developers.
The collaboration provided them with talented developers and introduced diverse perspectives and innovative problem-solving approaches. MindRight’s partnership with Tunga empowered them to scale their operations efficiently and maintain a competitive edge. Read the full story.
Amos Walugembe, a talented developer from Tunga’s talent pool, works with a renowned Western company. His expertise in front-end development and strong problem-solving skills have significantly contributed to the success of various projects.
Amos shares his experiences working with a global team and the valuable opportunities Tunga provided him in his testimonial. Read Amos’s full testimonial here.
Nimot Imran, another exceptional developer from Tunga’s talent pool, has driven digital innovation at a prominent Western company. Her frontend development expertise and ability to adapt to different cultures and work environments have made her an invaluable asset to her team.
Nimot’s testimonial showcases how Tunga facilitated her professional growth and provided her with exciting career opportunities. Discover Nimot’s full testimonial here.
The future outlook for the African tech ecosystem is exceptionally promising. With emerging tech hubs, a growing pool of talent, digital transformation, investment opportunities, and collaborative partnerships, Africa is positioned to become a global powerhouse in the tech industry. It is time for companies to recognize the untapped potential of African tech talent and embrace it as a viable option.
Companies can tap into African developers’ wealth of opportunities by challenging preconceived notions, fostering collaboration, investing in infrastructure and skills development, and embracing global collaboration. So let us seize this moment and unlock the immense potential within Africa’s vibrant tech communities. The time to act is now.