Botswana has become the latest country to realize the added advantage of having in place electronic recruitment processes as part of their Human Resources functionality. Companies are progressively moving away from labor intensive exercises requiring them to print CV’s into large cumbersome piles in order to scrutinize eligibility of applicants at a later stage (when they have mentally prepared themselves for the mammoth task).
Apart from the manner in which they receive and deal with CV’s, the way in which companies advertise positions in the modern era has also evolved to new time-saving, hassle-free electronic methods. These are very attractive options to organizations as they provide more cost effective solutions to HR Practitioners across the globe.
So what is an online job board? Online Job Boards have been around since the early 2000’s. Globally their popularity has grown steadily year-by-year to the point that they are now top shelf on the list when companies consider the ways in which they are to advertise their job vacancies. Job boards are distinctly different to recruitment agencies as they do not provide an HR admin function or processes.
Their strength lies instead in the manner in which they connect with the target groups through the internet. We’ve all heard about the way in which companies in advanced countries have realized the need to engage in commercial activities on social media sites like Facebook, twitter and YouTube. Sites that were previously considered to be frivolous and for juvenile usage.
This is simply not true and companies have woken up to the fact. They’ve realized that people are on these sight for a good part of their days whether it be at work or at home; to update family and friends on something amazing that happened in their lives; to tweet about an event they may be a part of or just to upload a fun video with friends to put a smile on whoever comes across their offering.
The platform the internet provides is limitless and it has given birth to social media sites that have changed our world for the better. Job boards fall in this very category.
Whilst these existing platforms are increasingly used to a commercial end the rise of Online Job Boards has served to further streamline the use of the internet when people are advertising available jobs and searching the market for employment. These technological advertences are invaluable. And here’s why. Advertising your job online makes it a lot more accessible to people.
This is true even in Botswana. We are not as behind in the technology space as people think. We have telecommunication companies that have brought world leading 4th generation internet connectivity (4G) right to our doorstep.
This means that if you have a smart phone, tablet, phablet, laptop or TV that can connect to the internet you will be able to connect to whatever you’re searching for in a matter of nano-seconds.
So whatever you place online will be available for all to see on the internet in an instance. Meaning if your company places a job advert on an online job board the second it is published it will become available worldwide in an instant.
It typically takes an average of 45 days to fill a vacancy. The first stage of this process includes advertising through print media, internal and external e-recruiting, word-of-mouth exercises etc. to inform people of the vacancy.
The wider you cast your net and the faster this can happen the better your chances of cutting down the extended period it will take your HR department to make a placement. Online Job Boards greatly speed up this process for your company because they are convenient for job seekers. As a job seeker there is a reluctance to go to each individual company’s website to check for vacancies on their respective career pages.
Not because they are lazy but simply because the exercise would be too time consuming. Sometimes information on career sites is not readily available due to the lack of a specifically dedicated person or team to spearhead this new e-recruitment functionality of their website.
Online Job Boards can further aid your company and its e-recruitment aspirations as it links jobs currently present in your internal career pages to the more centralized job board where job seekers will conveniently find them.
It can even serve as your career page so that when applicants click on the tab present on your page they will be re-directed to your dedicated page on the centralized job board which will contain all of your vacancies updated in real-time. It’s an incredibly efficient way to keep prospective employees abreast of when you are hiring for new positions as well as when applications are closed.
Online Job boards will help you receive a greater numbers of applicants. Whilst also providing you with automated ways of sorting through them that won’t cause an aneurism.
Virtual accounts are provided by job boards where all of the CV’s you have gathered in your database through prior job adverts can be stored for future use when you have another vacancy to fill. This can directly minimize your advertising expenditure as you will now be able to go through your virtual database to search relevant CV’s to the new position you are hiring for.
There will be no need to advertise externally. Being on the digital space means that Job Boards tend to work hand in hand with social networks as a tool to further increase traffic to their site and garner greater numbers of CV’s for your advertised jobs. More traffic to the job board means increase traffic for your company website as well m, through linking of pages.
This now becomes a branding value add to your company because where the Job Board penetrates the market your company will be present too. This has proven an effective way of getting visitors to your company’s site and maintain a high level of brand exposure in the market.
There is no reason why Online Job Boards will not work for your company. They are cost-effective, automated and integrated to the internet in a manner that both you and prospective employees will find immensely beneficial. Integrate an online job board into your company’s recruitment today and see instant results as you scoop up all the best available talent with ease.
In the words of Charles Darwin, "It is not the strongest of our species who survives, or the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.”
The partnership between Debswana and Botswana Oil Limited (BOL) which was announced a fortnight ago will create under 100 direct jobs, and scores of job opportunities for citizens in the value chain activities.
In a major milestone, Debswana and BOL jointly announced that the fuel supply to Debswana, which was in the past serviced by foreign companies, will now be reserved for citizen companies. The total value of the project is P8 billion, spanning a period of five years.
“About 88 direct jobs will be created through the partnership. These include some jobs which will be transferred from the current supplier to the new partnership,” Matida Mmipi, Head of Stakeholder Relations at Botswana Oil, told BusinessPost.
“We believe this partnership will become a blueprint for other citizen initiatives, even in other sectors of the economy. Furthermore, this partnership has succeeded in unlocking opportunities that never existed for ordinary citizens who aspire to grow and do business with big companies like Debswana.”
Mmipi said through this partnership, BOL and Debswana intend to impact citizen owned companies in the fuel supply value chain that include transportation, supply, facilities maintenance, engineering, customs clearance, trucks stops and its support activities such as workshop / maintenance, tyre services, truck wash bays among others.
“The number of companies to be on-boarded will be determined by the economics at the time of engagement,” she said. BOL will play a facilitatory role of handholding and assisting emerging citizen-owned fuel supply and fuel transportation companies to supply Debswana’s Jwaneng and Orapa Letlhakane Damtshaa (OLDM) mines with diesel and petrol for their operations.
“BOL expects to increase citizen companies’ market share in the fuel supply and transportation industries, which have over the years been dominated by foreign-owned suppliers. Consequently, the agreement will also ensure security of supply for Debswana operations, which are a mainstay of the Botswana economy,” Mmipi said.
“Furthermore, BOL will, under this agreement, transfer skills to citizen suppliers and transporters during the contract period and ensure delivery of competent and skilled citizen suppliers and transport companies upon completion of the agreement.”
Mmipi said the capacitating by BOL is limited to providing citizen companies oil industry technical capability and capacity to deliver on the requirements of the contract, when asked on helping citizen companies to access funding.
“BOL’s mandate does not include financing citizen empowerment initiatives. Securing funding will remain the responsibility of the beneficiaries. This could be through government financing entities including CEDA or through commercial banks. Further to this, there are financial institutions that have already signed up to support the Debswana Citizen Economic Empowerment Programme (CEEP),” Mmipi indicated.
While BOL is established by government as company limited by guarantee, it will not benefit financially from the partnership with Debswana, as citizen empowerment in the petroleum value chain is core to BOL’s mandate.
“BOL does not pursue citizen facilitation for financial benefit, but rather we engage in citizen facilitation as a social aspect of our mandate. Citizen facilitation comes at a cost, but it is the right thing to do for the country to develop the oil and gas industry,” she said.
Mmipi said supplying fuel to Debswana comes with commercial benefits such as supply margins. These have traditionally been made outside the country when supply was done by multi-nationals for a period spanning over 50 years. With BOL anchoring supply for Debswana, this benefit will accrue locally, and BOL will be able to pay taxes and dividends to the shareholders in Botswana.
PwC Africa has presented the eighth edition of the VAT in Africa Guide – Africa re-emerging. This backdrop of renewal informs on the re-emergence of African economies and societies which have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
In this edition, which has been compiled by PwC Africa’s indirect tax experts, covers a total of 41 African countries. It is geared towards sharing insight with our clients based on the constantly changing tax environments that can have a significant impact on business operations.
Within Africa, governments continue to focus on expanding the tax net by improving revenue collection through efficient compliance systems and procedures. PwC Africa has observed that revenue authorities also continue to take a keen interest in indirect taxes as part of revenue mobilisation initiatives.
Maturing VAT system and upskilling SARS
“In South Africa, VAT is becoming more relevant as a revenue source for the government,” says Matthew Besanko, PwC South Africa’s Indirect Tax Leader. “Strides have been made to upskill South African Revenue Service (SARS) staff and identify VAT revenue leakages, particularly in respect of foreign suppliers of electronic services to people and businesses in South Africa.”
Broadening the tax base and digital economy
In the past year, South Africa, Mozambique and Zimbabwe saw updates to their VAT legislation, or introduced specific legislation targeting electronically supplied services (ESS), which is in line with the global trend of attempting to tax the digital economy. “The expectation is that Botswana will also introduce VAT legislation in due course, while the National Treasury in South Africa has also made mention of revising the rules to account for further developments in the digital economy,” Besanko says.
South Africa’s National Treasury has also drafted legislation with the intention to introduce a reverse charge on gold, which is expected to come into effect later in 2022. While in Zimbabwe, revenue authorities have introduced a tax on the export of raw medicinal cannabis ranging between 10% and 20%, which came into effect on 1 January 2021.
ESG and carbon tax
Key strides have also been made within the Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) space. “ESG leadership, strategising and reporting is essential now for organisations that wish to flourish and remain relevant,” Kabochi says. He adds that companies need to consider how ESG and tax intersect, since tax is a significant value driver when businesses need to deliver on their ESG goals.
In South Africa, a carbon tax regime, which is being implemented in three phases, has been adopted. The second phase was scheduled to start in January 2023, however phase one was extended by three years until 31 December 2025.
Until then, taxpayers will enjoy substantial tax-free allowances which reduce their carbon tax liability. At the beginning of 2022, the South African government increased the carbon tax rate to R144 (about US$9), which is expected to increase annually to enable South Africa to uphold its COP26 commitments.
With effect from 1 January 2023, carbon tax payers in South Africa will also be required to submit carbon budgets and adhere to the provisions of the carbon budgeting system which will be governed by the Climate Change Bill. Where set carbon budgets are exceeded, the government plans to impose penalties. “At PwC, we are continuously focused on our renewed global strategy, ” The New Equation,” Kabochi says. “Through this strategy, a key focus area for PwC Africa is to support clients in adding value to their ESG ambitions and building trust through sustained outcomes.”
The New Equation is also an acknowledgement of the fundamental changes in the business environment in which PwC’s clients and other stakeholders operate. PwC continues to reinvent and adapt to these changes as a community of problem solvers, combining knowledge and human-led technology to deliver quality services and value.
Local and international economists have lowered their projections on Botswana’s economic growth for 2022 and 2023, saying the country is highly likely to fail to maintain high growth rate recorded in 2021 hence will not reach initial forecasts.
Economists this week lowered 2022 forecasts for Botswana’s economic growth rate, from the initial 5.3% to 4.8% and added that in 2023 growth could further decline to 4.0%. The lower projections come on the backdrop of an annual economic growth that recovered sharply in 2021 with figures showing that year-on-year real Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth increased to 11.4%, up from a contraction of 8.7% in 2020.
Economists from the local research entity, E-consult, this week stated that the 2021 double digit growth that exceeded projections made at the time of the 2022 budget may be short lived due to other developments taking place in the global economy. E-consult Economist Sethunya Kegakgametse stated that the war in Ukraine has worsened supply problems in the global economy and added that before the war, macroeconomic indicators were seen as improving and returning to pre-COVID levels.
According to the economist the global economy was projected to improve in 2022 and 2023. Recent figures show that global growth projections have been revised downwards from the initial forecast of 4.9% in 2022 with the World Bank’s new estimate for global growth in 2022 at 3.2%.
The statistics also shows that International Monetary Fund revised their growth projections for 2022 and 2023 down by 0.8% and 0.2% respectively, falling to 3.6% for both years. “The outbreak of war has severely dampened the global recovery that was under way following the COVID-19 pandemic,” said the economist.
She stated that despite Botswana being geographically removed from the conflict, the country has not and will not be exempt from the disruptions in the global economy. “The disruptions to global supply chains resulting from the war will have a negative effect on both Botswana’s growth and trade activities.
The economic sanctions against diamonds from Russia will add uncertainty to the market which will have knock on effects to Botswana’s growth, exports, and government revenues,” said the economists who added that the disruptions are driving prices up and result with very high inflation in the local economy.
Kegakgametse projected that in an attempt to limit inflation Bank of Botswana will be forced to raise interest rate “Should the sharp increase in both global and local inflation persist, Bank of Botswana much like other central banks around the world will be forced to raise interest rates in a bid to control rising prices. This would mean an end to the expansionary monetary policy stance that had been adopted post COVID-19 to aid economic growth,” she said.
In the latest projections, the UK based economic research entity Fitch Solutions lowered 2022 real GDP growth forecast for Botswana from 5.3% to 4.8% “In 2023, we see economic growth rate decelerating to 4.0%,” said Fitch Solutions economists who also noted that the 2022 and 2023 economic growth projections may come out lower than the current forecasts, as it is possible that new vaccine-resistant virus variants may be identified, which could result in the re-implementation of restrictions. “In such circumstances, we cannot rule out that Botswana’s economy may post weaker growth than our baseline scenario currently assumes,” said the economists.
According to the projections, Fitch Solution stated that there is limited scope for Botswana government to increase diamond production and exports, following the economic sanctions imposed on Russian diamond mining companies operating in Botswana. The research entity added that De Beers is unlikely to scale up diamond output from Botswana in order to prop up diamond prices.