July 1, 2024 Faatimah Clarke

The Business Case for Youth Recruitment

This collaborative research report by Genesis Analytics with a focus on the Challenge Fund for Youth Employment (CFYE) implementing partners, seeks to explore the commercial and social motivators and inhibitors to youth recruitment, driving businesses to recognise the value of young employees.

In Africa, about 10-12 million young people enter the labour market each year with only 3 million formal jobs available. While such large proportions of youth pose significant challenges across African economies, opportunities also arise for private sector companies to tap into this demographic dividend to prioritise the creation of dignified and sustainable job opportunities.

At the same time, entrepreneurs show hesitance to hire young people as, compared to older age groups on the labour market, they often have less experience and less job-specific skills. This refrains them from hiring more youth, however, a clear business case for youth can be made at the same time.  The goal of this research is to better understand the commercial motivators to hire youth, while at the same time addressing commercial barriers and shedding light on the social motivators and barriers to hire youth.

The overall findings explore the commercial and social motivators and inhibitors of hiring youth, and recommended human resources (HR) and youth recruitment strategies. These insights were gathered through a literature review and key informant interviews (KIIs) with Challenge Fund for Youth Employment (CFYE) Implementing Partners (IPs) and additional businesses.