The latest Employment Statistics in South Africa (2016/2017)
South Africa is one of many African countries where a high rate of unemployment is commonly seen amongst many citizens and foreigners looking for work. Employment statistics in South Africa shows how it affects various groups and individuals bearing qualifications as well as those without any qualification or matric.
The unemployment rate in South Africa took a drop in 2016 from 27% to 26.5%. Employment statistics in South Africa are thus still poor. According to statistics since 2000, the unemployment rate in South Africa was at 25% and then continued to rise and by 2016 reached a high of 31%.
There are several aspects that influences unemployment
The main causes of unemployment in South Africa range over a variety of factors heavily focused on education levels and some factors related to BEE (read: The Truth about BEE in South Africa) directed to certain groups.
Poor education levels
Regardless of tertiary education, there are many South Africans who barely make it to matriculate / grade 12 (NQF level 4). These individuals will find it the most difficult to find a good job let alone any employment for that matter. As a result a lack of skills is the next factor in the equation causing individuals to miss employment opportunity.
Minimum wages / salaries
Sometimes employers cannot afford to take on staff and will thus turn down applicants who resort to speculative applications within companies. Employees who live far from their workplaces often end up spending nearly half their salary in travelling costs especially if the wage offer is low.
BEE (Black Economic Empowerment)
The BEE law allows opportunities for many black South Africans, which results in more jobs available to the said group. This however, isn’t always the same for individuals of other groups and BEE applicants will get first preference to job vacancies, denying employment to others.
Unemployment with qualifications
It’s easy to look at unemployment based solely on poverty, but in South Africa, many qualified individuals face the brunt of unemployment each year.
After having qualified in a field, some individuals may realise that there is no demand for the field they chose to study. They now lack the skills needed for the vacant job available. These individuals not only invested their time, but also money into their education only to end up struggling to find work.
What are the effects of unemployment in South Africa?
Employment statistics in South Africa also show several effects that unemployment can have on the citizens of a country which isn’t always positive.
• It can lead to individuals resorting to crime to make ends meet.
• Overpopulation as a result of more “free-time” more sexual activity especially amongst the youth of the country.
• Unemployment doesn’t allow for proper family planning or birth control.
• Poorer communities may not be able to afford to send their children to school which leads to a lack of education and skills later when they seek work.
Employment statistics in South Africa will vary from time to time and it will always have a direct reflection of the impact it has on individuals. Some will enjoy positive prospects whilst others not so much.