Currently standing at about 38%, South Africa’s high youth unemployment rate is holding younger generations back from the freedoms that come with financial security, further fueling societal issues of poverty and crime.
This is according to Gary Epstein, MD at EasyBiz QuickBooks, who suggests that the development of skills required by the marketplace – from trades, to specialisations like engineering and medicine – should be a leading priority.
“Certain skills, such as those in finance and accounting, can also be applied across a range of industries, thereby increasing opportunities for employment,” he said.
“With President Cyril Ramaphosa committing to phasing in fully subsidised higher education and training for poor and working-class students in 2018, these are the skills we should be encouraging our youth to study. Otherwise we may be at risk of increasing the number of unemployed graduates in our society.”
Epstein shares his insights into the top five careers that South African youth should be considering to achieve economic empowerment.
Based on PayScale data, BusinessTech also included the average salaries you can expect to earn across these professions right now.
Finance or Accounting Manager
- Low: R135,961
- High: R493,193
- Average: R247,329
All businesses have financial departments, and so, the demand for these skills is ongoing, said Epstein.
“The South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) has noted that South Africa needs an additional 22,000 certified accountants to occupy the current demand gap.”
- Low: R246,816
- High: R965,207
- Average: R472,052
To meet the requirements of the growing population, the country’s public and private healthcare sectors are in constant need of trained doctors, said Epstein.
- Low: R487,385
- High: R844,856
- Average: R690,594
“With increasing reliance on technology, businesses collect, store and analyse massive amounts of data on a daily basis. These advances in computing and automation have resulted in high demand for analytics professionals.”
- Low: R175,581
- High: R726,868
- Average: R352,995
“South Africa produces, and retains, far too few engineers. With many South African engineering graduates choosing to work abroad, the national marketplace presents many opportunities for those wanting to apply their skills locally.”
*Figures represent salaries for mechanical engineers in South Africa.
- Low: R56,374
- High: R303,455
- Average: R176,169
Artisans, such as mechanics, have been in high demand in South Africa for many years.
“Earlier this year, Deputy Secretary General of the ANC, Jessie Duarte, noted that there is a staggering shortfall of 40,000 qualified artisans in the country,” said Epstein.