Meet Nigerian Community Leaders Fuelling Africa’s Tech Talent Pipeline
As Africa’s tech ecosystem grows, the demand for talent is soaring. For young Africans, digital skills have become ever-more important and attractive.
In 2021, according to the Africa Developer Ecosystem Report (pdf), Africa’s developer community grew by 3.8%, bringing the total number of developers on the continent to 716,000.
The average local developer in Africa is seven years younger than their global counterpart and has up to three years of experience. The pandemic drove increased adoption of remote work around the world, leading to international companies recruiting African developers at record rates.
For example, OfferZen, the South African job platform for remote developers, has reported record levels (pdf) of hiring activity, surpassing pre-pandemic levels.
Here are some of the people helping young African talent thrive.
Joy Eneghalu created More Techies—a diverse community for Africans in non-tech fields who are looking to participate in the tech ecosystem irrespective of their backgrounds. More Techies, also known as More Tribe, is self-described as a village of Africans in tech, probably because it adopts the “it takes a village” idealogy.
Members collaborate on projects to build their portfolios and connect one another to internships and other job opportunities. The community has an official cash-incentivized hackathon, which it calls the Morekathon. It is an opportunity for members of the community with diverse skills to collaborate and build a product that solves a problem in any of these sectors.
Akintunde Sultan founded DevCareer to give Africans increased access to learning resources, mentorship programs, and other sources that are necessary to kickstart their journey to becoming tech professionals.
DevCareer began in Nigeria and in its first year, it focused on training 22 upcoming developers.
Today, it has over 14,000 community members in Nigeria and other countries. DevCareer also has a cohort-based laptop support program called Laptop4Developers through which DevCareer donates free laptops to hundreds of Africans who are on software development learning tracks.
Each cohort runs for a 3-month period, during which time they also receive free and highly discounted online courses, mentorship programs, boot camps, and a co-learning space in partner co-working hubs in Nigeria, Kenya, Ghana, Zambia, and Rwanda.
Joel Ogunsola & Diwura Oladepo
Joel Ogunsola & Diwura Oladepo are leading Tech4Dev—a non-profit organization that offers and advocates free digital skills empowerment for Africans.
The goal of the organization is to give more Africans access to work and entrepreneurship opportunities in the tech ecosystem.
Feranmi Okafor created Tech Marketers Hub—a non-profit community for marketers. The community aims to be a hub for marketers who are just starting out.
It is an exciting and empowering community for tech marketers of all levels, and a one-stop shop for recruiters looking to hire marketers. It gives budding and experienced marketing professionals access to learning resources, boot camps, mentorship, and opportunities to network with people in the ecosystem.
It partners with tech companies to offer significant discounts on paid boot camps, learning resources, and events. In less than a year, it has grown to over 1,000 members across 10 time zones.