5 Essentials for Beginning the Search for a Career in Africa

As more of the continent benefits from economic growth that is the envy of the world, Africa’s need for professional talent to fulfil its potential is a great as ever. With recent surveys by the likes of PwC and EY concluding that the availability of skills remains a key concern for CEOs operating in the region, the race is on for employers to make the most of all available pools of exceptional African talent.

From 26th – 27th October 2017, Global Career Company’s Careers in Africa Recruitment Summit will return to Johanessburg for its 15th edition. This event, unique among African career events in its commitment to pre-selecting every attendee based on their skills, will welcome up to 20 major African employers to a London venue. Joining them will be around 1,000 of the most talented African professionals in the UK, all exploring the opportunities available, networking and interviewing for current vacancies with these top employers.

As the Southern African candidate base prepares to attend the Summit, Global Career Company’s Client Managing Director, Alex Mugan, has the following advice for professionals in the Diaspora looking to build a career in Africa.

Market Yourself

Present your skills as effectively as possible, in the right places, by registering with career sites such as careersinafrica.com and maintaining social media profiles. Ensure your records are kept up to date, as recruitment consultants and employers can only offer you the type of roles your profile appears to match.

Expect to Engage

Thanks to social media and company career websites, you have more opportunities than ever to find out about prospective employers and to engage them directly. You can research their brand, what they offer, how they communicate, what their leaders are talking about. You can even engage their team in discussions around posted content. In this environment, consider the best way to appear credible and to stand out. You have to research, appear professional and know what you are talking about, because while technology gives you the chance to find out more, it also means you’re expected to take that opportunity, because your competition will.

Be Discerning

Given that you can now see beneath the surface of an employer or a recruitment agent, you can ensure they are what you are looking for before beginning the process. Time is precious. Your career is precious. Why would you spend either with the wrong employer, or working with the wrong recruiter?

Be Dedicated

In a competitive talent market, you have to show dedication to get the role you deserve. Whether it’s in researching and applying for sufficient roles to find the right one, or in completing follow-ups, application forms and interview preparations to the best of your ability, dedication will help you stand out. Even in social media interactions, taking to time to personalise approaches or to respond to job posts in a way that shows you care will help you be successful. Did you send a cover letter when you last applied for a job? If not, consider whether that decision makes your success more or less likely.

Expect Discernment, Dedication and Engagement from your Recruiter

There is a world of recruiters out there and many, many good ones. When selecting the recruiters who will support you in finding your next role, apply the highest standards. Expect from them everything you expect from yourself, and don’t spend your time with those who fall short of your standards. Move on, there are better out there, and whatever you do, don’t work with recruiters who charge money. Proper recruiters charge your future employer for your brilliant skills, they don’t charge you.

Careers in Africa Recruitment Summit, 26th – 27th October 2017