Hiring boost for these sectors in South Africa

 ·22 Aug 2022

Specialist recruitment, training, and outsourcing company Workforce Holdings published its interim results for the six months ended June 2022, showing a 21% increase in revenue to R1.9 billion.

The listed group pointed to ‘good growth’ from staffing and outsourcing and healthcare and a solid contribution from the training and education investment cluster. It said that the financial services cluster is showing signs of improvement, having been particularly hard-hit by the Covid pandemic.

Workforce said that headline earnings per share improved to 14.6 cents per share, up from 11.2 cents per share, and earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation improved by 19% to R68.7 million.

“The Workforce Staffing brand delivered a superb result, particularly in supplying technical and engineering staff in the oil and gas and power generation sectors, on the back of delayed maintenance during the Covid-19 pandemic. The supply of staff in the e-commerce, green hydrogen and renewable energy sectors further boosted results,” it said.

Workforce Holdings said that the placement of permanent staff is the most significant component of the Recruitment investment cluster. “Coming out of the pandemic, the upper management placement market is buoyant, and the executive placement model capitalised on this.

“The blue-collar and temporary employment services businesses have landed significant projects in the oil and gas and mining sectors. Given solid expertise across the cluster, it will continue to focus on these sectors in support of technical placements, accelerated by rising commodity pricing.”

It said that in the part of the business dedicated to the supply of healthcare personnel, the successful appointment to supply staff to government healthcare has assisted in establishing a solid presence in Gauteng.

“Thankfully the decline of acute infections from Covid-19 has alleviated pressure on hospitals. Elective procedures and surgeries have returned, requiring the services of specialised nursing staff and doctors at pre-Covid-19 levels.”

South Africa’s healthcare sector has a critical shortage of skilled doctors and nurses, particularly in the public sector.

Looking ahead, Workforce said that as it continually monitors and learns from global trends, “it is clear that we have to be flexible in allowing staff to balance remote and onsite work as our connectivity allows for remote collaboration and service delivery”.

It said it remains cautious in respect of the remaining six months of the 2022 financial year as financial results will depend on the impact of the broader global economic factors.

Political instability and the failure of the government to implement infrastructure are impacting the operating environment in South Africa. Forced power outages through persistent load shedding impact all our clients and have a knock-on effect on the Workforce investment clusters, the group said.

“Encouragingly, the investment into renewable energy projects and the recent announcement by president Ramaphosa to fix the energy crisis are favourable for the economy and, in turn, for Workforce.”

Cyril Ramaphosa recently announced a plan to address the country’s energy crisis, including the acceleration of the procurement of new generation capacity and ramping up private investment in generation capacity.

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