In this part of the world, the abundance of talents can’t be overlooked as the continent continues to churn out young talented individuals who have gone all the way in building software projects for global tech companies and innovative solutions that have reshaped Africa and influencing the world at large.
However, in all these, there appears to be a significant drawback comparing the number of those who have the talents but have no opportunity to those who have actually scaled with the talents.
With an equal distribution of opportunity for talents in software engineering across the globe, the challenge of shortage in this skillset would be minimal, thus emerging software engineers from the African continent would favorably compete with their global counterparts.
Some months ago, Andela was valued at $1 billion after it raised $200 million in Series E funding in a bid to continue helping companies build remote engineering teams by providing them with access to the best software engineers in the world.
In a brief chat with Agnes Muthoni, Director of Talent Partnerships for Andela, she took us through an overview of the African software engineering ecosystem and how its new model of remote work would affect the future of work.
What drove Andela to start its software engineering project?
At the time Andela was launched in 2014, there was a global shortage of engineers as well as a digital skills gap.
From the start, we’ve always believed that brilliance is evenly distributed but opportunity is not.
Africa, at the time, had the largest pool of untapped talent which was why we set up shop there, starting from Lagos, and invested in the talent by connecting them with leading technology companies, not just in the US but across the world.
From Pre-series to Series E round, how has the journey been for Andela?
The journey from pre-series to Series E round has by no means been a perfectly smooth ride, but we continue to expand and invest in talent on a global scale.
The world is finally embracing what we have always said from the very start – the future of work will be distributed.
Fast forward seven years, we have access to incredible talent across 6 continents and are using technology to power high-performing teams and help companies adopt the remote model faster.
Our Series E round will essentially help us to expand our talent offering and we are now looking to include new verticals such as design and data.
An overview of the software engineering ecosystem in Africa?
Looking at the African tech sector as a whole, we can see that the continent is indeed going through a technological transformation in many sectors – especially in fintech but also health, logistics and education.
Tech is a disruptor that has enabled this economical development in an increasingly efficacious way and has led to an increase in demand for engineering talent.
Tech is required in order to solve local challenges and there is now a lot more focus on developing local talent and investing in digital skills-building initiatives, such as the Andela Learning Community, our learning developer program which has now supported over 100,000 software engineers.
Andela launched Salesforce development early last year, how has it been?
Andela partnered with Salesforce with the aim of training and certifying developers based within Africa in Salesforce technologies and connecting them with amazing opportunities.
So far, the program has been going well, and we look forward to enrolling more developers.
At Andela, we are passionate about projects such as these that will help developers get access to the training and certification they need in order to succeed.
How is Andela’s full remote strategy affecting the future of work?
When we started Andela, the concept of remote working was well-known in the engineering world, but rarely practiced.
After the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become apparent to the rest of the world that remote working is the future, and the future is here.
There has been a lot of talk about a new normal, and companies like ours exist to help other companies with a smoother remote hiring process.
In order to scale, global hiring must be considered, but it can also be complicated to do well on your own.
Our ability to evaluate the technical and soft skills of engineers, and match them with the organizations and teams they’ll be most successful in, has resulted in a 96% successful placement rate.
Featured Image: Agnes Muthoni, Director of Talent Partnerships, Andela
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