With unemployment at a staggering 63.4%, there lies the huge task for addressing youth and graduate unemployment, as PPS explains ahead of Youth Day in June.
Johannesburg: 24 June 2019 – Persisting concerns of unemployment amongst graduates and employed professionals continues as, the recent PPS Student Confidence Index (SCI) shows that only 39% of the students surveyed were concerned they would not be employed immediately after completing their studies.
The latest Quarterly Labour Force Survey results released by Statistics South Africa last month paints a bleak picture with the unemployment rate of 31.0% during this period compared to 19.5% in Q4 of 2018. This is a concerning 11.4% increase suggesting that more is needed or the situation will worsen.
Education however is still the key to young peoples’ prospects of entering the labour market with the graduates’ unemployment rate lower than the rate of those with lower educational qualifications.
“At PPS we believe that youth graduates are important for their critical role in the working environment and for shaping SA’s future, says Motshabi Nomvethe, Head of Technical Marketing at PPS. “We know that the newly elected President Cyril Ramaphosa is concerned about the high rate of youth unemployment in the country and we welcome his call for businesses to create training and entry level job opportunities for young people to acquire practical workplace experiences.”
However, South African professionals believe in greater involvement from government to solve this problem. When asked about the state of youth employment, 36% of professionals in the 2019 PPS Graduate Professional Index (GPI) thought the government should take a lead in drafting conducive policies for businesses to thrive and create job opportunities. Additionally, 30% of respondents believed that their professional associations were also looking for solutions.
According to the PPS SCI survey, securing a degree has dipped to under 30% for the first time in four years of conducting the survey, showing 27% of students saying they would want to continue with their postgraduate studies while 40% indicated they prefer employment. A staggering 84% of the respondents have indicated the cost of furthering tertiary studies is a prohibitor.
“This differs from previous years and could be the result of the tougher economy where the general sentiment among students is to enter the workforce – and earn a living - sooner,” explains Nomvethe.
PPS as a company built on the ethos of mutuality to provide members with financial planning, investment and insurance solutions that address their specialised needs, has commissioned the Graduate Professionals Index (GPI) aimed at tracking the confidence levels of professional graduates on a variety of issues such as the economy, emigration, crime, healthcare and opportunities.
This year’s GPI index shows that 68% of professional respondents felt confident about the future of their profession in the next five years. The factors that positively influence this confidence were financial viability, regulations as well as political and economic conditions.
However, when asked if unemployment affects their profession, 42% of respondents said skilled professionals cannot find appropriate jobs and are moving overseas with engineers in the majority at 51%.
“As can be seen, we believe much needs to be done to alleviate concerns around employment and job security and perhaps the starting point begins with creating opportunities that retains our professional talent which is much needed in rebuilding the economy’s growth,” she explains.
Nomvethe mentions that PPS has a one-year Graduate Internship Development Programme in which candidates gain relevant work experience and soft skills. At the end of the programme, they have the prospect of receiving permanent employment within the company.
She adds that through PPS Professional Connect initiative, the company collaborate with professional associations, corporates, academic institutions and experienced professionals to impart skills and knowledge to students and graduates to prepare them for the workplace environment as well as personal development.
PPS boasts in excess of 200 000 members who enjoy access to a comprehensive suite of financial and healthcare products that are specifically tailored to meet the needs of graduate professionals.
PPS is the largest South African company of its kind that still embraces an ethos of mutuality, which means that it exists solely for the benefit of its members. Thus, PPS members with qualifying products share in the profits of PPS Insurance via annual allocations to the unique PPS Profit-Share Account and those who have qualifying PPS Provider products can also share in the profits of PPS Investments.
PPS membership provides access to the following tried, tested and trusted products and services: PPS Insurance, PPS Short-Term Insurance, PPS Financial Planning, PPS Investments and Profmed Medical Scheme. Visit www.pps.co.za for more information.
PPS is an authorised financial services provider.