When you choose a career, it is always good to know if your chance to get a job is high, after completing your studies. In South Africa, more than 800 000 positions in companies are not filled because of a shortage of professionals. Here are the most needed skilled :
1.Engineers (4 years University degree or national diploma)
Engineers are in high demand. The most wanted are electrical, electronic (as the telecommunications industry is growing fast) and chemical engineers. There is also a high demand for industrial/production engineers, mechanical, civil and structural engineers (construction industry) and a moderate growth for metallurgical and mining engineers (stagnant state of the mining industry).
There is also a shortage of Aeronautical Engineers, Aircraft maintenance Engineers
Avionic Engineers Radio frequency and signal engineers, Microwave and satellite engineers
2.Artisans and technicians (training at FET colleges and practical training at the employer (many learnerships available)
A lot of young people think it is not cool to become an electrician or a technician but you can make a lot of money and create your own company more easily than in other careers ! There is a big shortage of technicians in the construction and manufacturing industries
In high demand :
- electrical and electronic sectors : electricians - physical drawing/drafting skills – electrical instrument technician – computer numeric control - Electrical mechanical incl. instrumentation
- Silicon and Microchip developers
-Manufacturing industries : mechanical engineering draftspersons and technicians -Metallurgical and materials fabrication engineering technician -precision metal technician - Vehicle diagnostic technicians - Foundry metallurgists -Hydraulic and Pneumatic Technicians
Industrial / Product development technologist -NDE Technicians - Dimensional Controllers - Tool designers including Millwrights, Melters, Coded Welders, turners, boilermakers
There is also a shortage of piping and pipe laying technician -Architectural technicians
Aircraft maintenance and aviations technicians -Earth Science Technicians -Jewellery Designers
3. Scientists and Environment
In the coming years, we can expect a high demand for professions related to agriculture, biotechnology, space, water and environment.
-Biothechonology and agriculture : chemists, biologists and natural sciences technologists-agricultural Economist ( Econometrics ) -Agricultural Engineers incl. Farm Irrigation systems engineers -Agricultural Extension officers: technology focused -Agricultural statistics: Biometrician, crop modeler
Agricultural Biotechnologists: Genetic markers and promoters –Virologists -Oenologist / Viticulture -Genetists plant breeders -Pasture Scientists
Plant pathologists -Food safety Quality Assurance Specialists
-Space : geologists, astronomers, astrophysicists, Astrophysicists, Atmospheric Physicists, Surface Physicists, Space Scientists, Geophysists
-Water and environment : environment health officer (bursaries available : JB Marks education fund and Oppenheimer Trust) – water safety officer (bursary available at Fort Hare University), ecologist (BST degree in Botany, Zoology or Geology – bursaries awardeb dy Anglo platinium development center)
4. IT sector
There is a shortage of Software developers, analysts and engineers -ICT Security Specialistsincl -Dimensional Controllers - Systems Analysts and Software Engineers
Actuaries -Financial Market Analysts and Risk Managers are in high demand
There is also a shortage of aqualified accountants, specifically Chartered Accountants, auditors and company Secretaries, Human Resource Advisor, Training and Development Professionals. Statisticians and Economists, Accounting Clerks, Bookkeepers and Purchasing Officers
South Africa has a drastic skills shortage of professionals in public hospitals : doctors, nurses and other professionals, including dentists, , pharmacists physiotherapists, occupational therapists and paramedics.
The pharmacy industry needs Biological science technicians -Bio- informatics and Biomedical Engineers
Combinatorial and Computational Chemistry and Research and Development Pharmacologists
Also needed :Veterinarians
Bursaries available : Discovery Trust, Gauteng department of Health, SA Medical association, Hosken Foundation,
7. Education and Social services
South Africa needs 20 000 new teachers a year but only 6000 qualify. There is a high demand for teachers, especially in maths, science, accounting and information technology.
There is also a need of social workers
Bursaries : www.fundzalushaka.doe.gov.za for teacher –
Social worker : www.dsd.gov.za – go to social work scholarship on the left).
8. Art and entertainment
• desktop publishing specialists, graphic designers and commercial artists.
• architects and quantity surveyor
• lower demand for musicians, TV/film/radio producers and announcers
These tips are just an indication of the job market trends. The most important thing is to do something that you like ! Too many students drop out during the first year of study because they were influenced by their parents, teachers or did not get the right information before they made their choice. The best is to study what you are passionate about !