The minister of Public Service and Administration (DPSA), Ayanda Dlodlo, is set to launch the Public Service Graduate Recruitment Scheme at the University of Johannesburg on Wednesday (25 July).
The scheme – which is aimed at curbing the high numbers of graduate unemployment in South Africa – was approved by Cabinet in December 2017, and will offer new graduates work opportunities and training in government departments.
“This initiative came to fruition in response to the recommendation of the National Development Plan (NDP) that in order to achieve a professional public service, the state needs to be a career of choice, by attracting the best graduates and youth with potential to its employment service,” the DPSA said in a statement.
It added that the graduate recruitment scheme aims to achieve the following:
- Strengthen the talent pipeline for the Public Service’s future capacity especially in scarce occupations and critical areas of service delivery (technical skills and specialist professions);
- Provide best-practice on existing graduate schemes in the public service and the principles for implementation across the public service;
- Enhance the image and competitiveness and prestige of public employment in the labour market and to improve professionalism in the public service.
High rate of unemployment
The Quarterly Labour Force Survey for the first quarter of 2018, showed that South Africa’s unemployment rate has remained unchanged at 26.7% since the end of 2017.
While these stats point to a ‘stable’ unemployment rate, a growing concern is the number of young people without jobs in the country.
STats SA found that the graduate unemployment rate was 33.5% for those aged between 15–24, and 10.2% among those aged 25–34 years.
However this number decreased significantly among adults (aged 35–64 years) where the unemployment rate is just 4.7% for graduates.
“When young people are employed in the South African labour market, their employment intensity is the highest amongst the Trade, Agriculture, and Finance and other business services industries,” Stats SA said.
“Low and semi-skilled youth employment is concentrated in the Trade industry, while high-skilled youth employment is in the Community and social services as well as Finance and other business services industries.”