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The Thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions South African graduate programme, announced late last year, has officially kicked off. 15 tertiary graduates have been employed by the company, and are being given training over a twelve month period.

Thyssenkrup skillsThe graduates will each spend the full period in the department to which they have been assigned to ensure that they receive thorough training and have complete understanding of that particular area. “As far as possible, we have tried to place the graduates in divisions that match their line of study,” says Siphindile Madonsela, Director of Thyssenkrupp Industrial Solutions South Africa and Head of Human Resources.

“Although Thyssenkrupp has successfully employed graduates in the past, this is the first time that we have undertaken this type of structured initiative in South Africa. It is the duty of every company to be progressive on the skills development front. We are very excited about this programme and believe that it will add value and present a win-win not only for Thyssenkrupp but also for the country as a whole. Although the graduates add to our staff complement they to do not add to the company’s head count. While they are learning and gaining experience, the graduates are in turn assisting us with projects.”

He adds that graduates are finding it increasingly difficult to get into the job market not only due to job scarcity but also because often companies are not keen to employ graduates straight from universities or colleges because of their lack of work experience. “Many companies in South Africa prefer to employ experienced graduates as they are simply not prepared to invest in training, an expensive and time intensive exercise. As graduates cannot compete with people with both a tertiary education and job experience they often remain unemployed, unable to earn a living, build a career and make a positive contribution to the South African economy,” he points out.

“Through skills development, Thyssenkrupp is making a meaningful contribution to solving a national problem. Through the placement of skilled graduates with one year’s experience into the job market we are helping to alleviate the shortage of skilled personnel and helping to reduce unemployment. We extend a warm welcome to all the graduates and wish them every success over the next twelve months,” Madonsela concludes.

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