Africa’s Top Employers for 2016 announced

To see all the Certified Top Employers for Africa for 2016 click here

Eight organisations made up of 61 operations have been certified as Top Employers in Africa for 2016, indicating that organisations on the continent are increasingly investing in talent and best practice to secure superior performance.

On October 1 2015, the Top Employers Institute announced the group of top performing companies, which include multinational stalwarts Abbvie, Becton Dickinson, DHL, EY, G4S, Old Mutual, Orange (including Orange Business Services Egypt and Mobinil) and Unilever. 

“We are delighted by the increase we have seen in companies participating in the Top Employers Africa 2016 Certification Programme,” says Samantha Crous, Top Employers Institute regional director: Africa and Benelux. “This indicates the growing number of organisations seeing the benefits of being recognised for good HR practices and efforts in creating optimal working conditions for employees.”

Crous added that as African economies continue to grow exponentially, corporates are investing more in their people and practices to help them ride the wave of economic growth in these regions.

The Top Employers Institute this year marks 25 years of excellence as a global certifier for the 2016 certification cycle. Chief executive David Plink says: “Increasingly, organisations are shifting their perspective on HR. We see our certified Top Employers largely focused on building or creating the right conditions for their employees to excel in what they do. We have worked hard to globally set the benchmark for best HR practice in this regard.” 

Headquartered in the Nether–lands, the Top Employers Institute annually conducts a Certification Programme in over 100 countries around the world. 

Top Employers are able to use the certification seal on their official communications.  

Recent research conducted by MWM2 marketing agency shows that 60% of those polled indicated a more positive perception of an employer that had been awarded the Top Employers Certification Seal. 

EY Africa talent leader Johanna Mapharisa says that the Top Employers certification is a testament to the fact that the company is committed to investing in its talent and developing inclusive leaders who are key to providing exceptional service to clients and making a positive impact in local communities.

“We know that our relentless focus on our talent translates into rich and holistic experiences for our people, and strengthens our brand as an employer of choice.”

Key trends to emerge from the research results for 2016 include that more companies are placing value on measuring the effectiveness of different areas within HR such as leadership and development, talent strategy, career and succession management, onboarding and performance management.

While measuring the value of these initiatives is difficult, it is important as it leads to insight on the impact of the investment that companies are making in HR, says Crous. “What differentiates Top Employers is that HR fulfills a strategic role within the organisation.”

Crous added that this is also evident in the fact that there is an emerging correlation between top performing companies and the level of involvement from executive management.

This is certainly the case for Unilever, another Top Employer in Africa. “We constantly measure how effectively we implement these principles, tracking things like how many of our employees get promoted, how effectively we are building an inclusive culture, how many of our employees are going on international assignments, etcetera, and this gets reviewed at board level. These are not just HR measures; these are company measures of success,” says Unilever HR future leader James Hu.

A recent McKinsey and Company report indicated that measuring the effectiveness of HR investment, for instance in training programmes, was one of the biggest challenges facing businesses around the world. Almost 20% of surveyed companies said their companies didn’t attempt to measure effectiveness at all and only 13% tried to quantify the financial return on their training investment. 

Crous says: “Top Employers not only have good HR practices in place, but also make sure they are measuring the quantifiable results of these initiatives. I believe this is part of a commitment to continuous improvement in HR practices that ultimately results in a top performing organisation where people want to work.”