International workforce company, the ManpowerGroup, has released its latest Total Workforce Index.
The index uses a proprietary algorithm to measure the relative ease of sourcing, hiring and retaining a workforce in competing labor markets around the world.
It does this by compiling more than 90 key factors which relate to the availability, cost efficiency, regulation and productivity of the workforce of each country.
South Africa ranked 24th out of the total ranking of 75 countries internationally, and 14th in a ranking of European, Middle East, and African countries. It ranked highly for cost efficiency and regulation, but lost points due to poor market maturity and availability of skilled labour.
The report also found that the country’s workforce still has a number of hurdles to overcome to be more competitive, globally, with just 50% of the workforce being proficient in English, and only 27.6% considered to be white collar or “highly skilled”.
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It further found that the average South African worker works exactly 9 hours a day – just under an hour more than other African, European and Middle-Eastern (EMEA) countries.
This equates to an average work week of 45 hours for South Africans, compared to 41.6 hours in EMEA countries.
This means that while the stereotypical 9:00 – 17:00 work day holds true globally, South Africans are being encouraged to come in earlier and leave later, the report found.
South Africans are also cheaper to pay than their EMEA counterparts, with an average monthly wage of $1,353 (R18,230), compared to the regional EMEMA average of $1,904 (R25,654) and the global average of $1,979 (R26,665).
Other major differences between South Africa’s workforce and other countries include:
- Equal pay and gender parity is not mandated.
- There are no maximum contract durations.
- South Africans need to give just four weeks severance notice.
- There are relatively strict Visa regulations when sourcing foreign workers.
You can read the full report here.