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News » South Africa BPO creates 6,018 jobs in Q4 2023

South Africa BPO creates 6,018 jobs in Q4 2023

South Africa jobs Q4 2023
Photo from GBS World

CAPE TOWN, SOUTH AFRICA — South Africa’s business process outsourcing (BPO) sector has made a substantial impact on the country’s employment landscape, creating 6,018 new jobs between October and December 2023. 

KZN South Coast: Strategic location for BPO operations

According to the industry body Business Process Enabling South Africa (BPESA), 39% of these new jobs were generated in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN). The KZN South Coast, in particular, has emerged as a prime location for BPO operations, attracting investment due to its strategic advantages.

“The KZN South Coast has beautiful tourist towns; stable, warm year-round weather; and a pleasing landscape that makes it a great destination from which to operate,” said Reshni Singh, CEO of BPESA. 

Singh added that the region has “a very active community ensuring maintenance and upkeep, with businesses and citizens working effectively together to ensure sustained operations.”

Addressing unemployment and fostering economic growth

In July 2023, BPESA reported that the BPO sector contributed approximately ZAR1.3 billion ($69 million) to South Africa’s export revenue. 

The sector is also seen as a critical component in addressing the country’s unemployment crisis, with a target of creating 500,000 new jobs by 2030.

The official unemployment rate in South Africa stood at 32.9% in the first quarter of 2023, with youth unemployment reaching a staggering 45.5%. The BPO sector, also known as the global business services (GBS) sector, is viewed as a potential solution to these challenges.

Talent pool and infrastructure support BPO growth

Singh highlighted several key sites for BPO hubs on the KZN South Coast, including Port Shepstone, Scottburgh, Ramsgate, Southbroom, Pennington, and Margate. The accessibility of these locations, coupled with the local talent pool, makes them ideal for BPO operations.

“The local Margate Airport and easy commute from King Shaka International Airport make this an accessible destination, with abundant skills and talent from the tourism sector offering entrenched customer-centric service skills, which are a prerequisite for the BPO sector,” Singh noted. She also mentioned the role of business incubators like SmartXchange in fostering digital skills and business growth.

Socially conscious practices and future prospects

Deborah Ludick, acting CEO of South Coast Tourism and Investment Enterprise, expressed optimism about the region’s potential. “We have a business-friendly investment climate supported by the launch of our Ugu District One-Stop Shop, with access to an abundance of young, educated, and tech-savvy workers ready for employment,” she said.

Ludick also highlighted the sector’s commitment to socially conscious practices and upskilling young and disadvantaged individuals, making it an industry worth promoting.

As South Africa continues to navigate economic challenges, the BPO sector’s growth and job creation efforts offer a promising path forward, contributing significantly to the country’s employment and economic stability.

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