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Africa’s e-government efforts are bearing fruit

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By Sunil Geness, Director: Global Government Affairs & CSR at SAP Africa

LAGOS, Nigeria, 20th December 2021 -/African Media Agency(AMA)/- Following the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on governments and citizens, countries across the African continent are looking at e-government with renewed interest and urgency. 

In its latest E-Government Survey, the UN notes that governments around the world are looking at new e-government initiatives in their pursuit of digital government transformation. These include the expansion of e-participation, the delivery of e-government as a platform, the innovative use of intelligent technologies to power smart cities, and the adoption of data-centric approaches to service delivery and government policy.

E-government is defined as the use of information and communication technologies to transform government services – its processes, procedures and structures – by making it more accessible, effective and accountable. 

According to the UN, e-government holds the potential to improve the delivery of public services and is an enabler of effective, transparent and accountable public institutions

African nations show encouraging growth in e-services

All regions are making progress with developing e-government capabilities, but Africa is showing the greatest growth. The number of UN member states in Africa that have low e-government development index (EGDI) values dropped from 26 in 2016 to only seven in 2020. Sadly, no African country can yet boast very high EGDI values: in Europe, 33 countries have ‘very high’ EGDI values, and 15 in Asia. 

Although lagging more developed regions, Africa has the largest share of countries that have moved to a higher EGDI group of all regions. The African countries with the highest EGDI values are Mauritius, Seychelles, South Africa and Tunisia, who are all in the top 100 globally. 

As governments respond to the challenges brought by the pandemic, many are placing greater emphasis on e-government services, which can be evidenced in

·    Expanded national portal features

·    Improved transactional online services such as tax submissions, license renewals, permits and business registrations

·    Greater digitisation of sectoral services in health, employment, justice, employment and social protection

·    Extending online services to vulnerable groups including the elderly, persons with disabilities, youth and women.

Sixty-five to seventy percent of African countries allow citizens to register a business online, while more than half allow citizens to apply for a government post or request birth, death or marriage certificates.

However, access to digital services remains an obstacle to greater e-government development in Africa. The continent’s internet penetration is estimated at 36% – or 473 million people – and digital literacy levels are also comparably lower than more developed regions.

New policies point to data-driven governments

One of the key components of effective e-government is the effective use of government data. With much of the world’s data resting in the hands of a small number of global cloud and digital services providers, African nations have taken note of the importance of leveraging data that could be applied in the service of national and regional decision-making and policy development.

As one of the most digitally mature of all African nations, South Africa produces huge and growing volumes of personal, public, corporate and government data. Its recently published National Data and Cloud Policy sets out how the government can better use data as a natural resource, mine it for insights, and apply those insights to improve service delivery.

The African Union’s Digital Transformation Strategy is also clear in its intention to ensure the continent’s ownership of modern digital tools, but with only 1% of the world’s data centres, many countries still have some work to do.

Next steps hold key to e-government success

What is the way forward for Africa’s e-government growth? The UN believes comprehensive national digital transformation strategies and implementation plans that integrate national priorities with regional and global priorities are essential. 

Encouragingly, many African countries have taken bold steps forward in this regard. Nigeria has introduced a Government Integrated Financial Management Information System; Mauritius is in the process of establishing a regional e-governance academy; Zimbabwe has enabled a public-sector financial management system; and Ethiopia has connected cash registers at retail outlets directly to the country’s tax authority. 

The Smart Africa initiative, which was established in 2013, puts ICT at the centre of socio-economic development, encourages greater access to ICT, aims to improve accountability and efficiency through the use of ICT, and more broadly leveraging ICT to promote sustainable development.

The Policy and Regulation Initiative for Digital Africa, a joint programme between the African Union, European Union and International Telecommunication Union, aims to facilitate universally accessible, affordable and effective wireless broadband across the continent, with the ultimate goal of bringing an additional 300 million people in Africa online by 2025.

As countries across Africa accelerate their adoption of digital technologies, new opportunities are being created for more efficient and accessible public services that can help establish a more equitable and enabling environment for citizens and businesses alike. 

Building on the success of the past few years, countries can take bold steps toward greater regional and global competitiveness while enhancing the citizen experience for all who call Africa home.

Distributed by African Media Agency (AMA) on behalf of SAP Africa.

Visit the SAP News Center. Follow SAP on Twitter at @SAPNews.

About SAP

As the Experience Company powered by the Intelligent Enterprise, SAP is the market leader in enterprise application software, helping companies of all sizes and in all industries run at their best: 77% of the world’s transaction revenue touches an SAP® system. Our machine learning, Internet of Things (IoT), and advanced analytics technologies help turn customers’ businesses into intelligent enterprises. SAP helps give people and organizations deep business insight and fosters collaboration that helps them stay ahead of their competition. We simplify technology for companies so they can consume our software the way they want – without disruption. Our end-to-end suite of applications and services enables more than 440,000 business and public customers to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and make a difference. With a global network of customers, partners, employees, and thought leaders, SAP helps the world run better and improve people’s lives. For more information, visit www.sap.com.

Note to editors:

To preview and download broadcast-standard stock footage and press photos digitally, please visit www.sap.com/photos. On this platform, you can find high resolution material for your media channels. To view video stories on diverse topics, visit www.sap-tv.com. From this site, you can embed videos into your own Web pages, share video via email links, and subscribe to RSS feeds from SAP TV.

For customers interested in learning more about SAP products: 

Global Customer Center: +49 180 534-34-24
United States Only: 1 (800) 872-1SAP (1-800-872-1727)

For more information, press only:

Delia Sieff, SAP Africa, +27 (11) 235 6000, delia.sieff@sap.com

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African Media Agency -English

Promoting African agency on the global stage: communicators gather in Rwanda to establish roadmap 

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KIGALI, Rwanda, 23 May 2022 -/African Media Agency (AMA)/- The flagship event of Africa Communications Week 2022 hosted by KGL FWD with support from Africa No Filter and RwandAir will take place on 23 and 24 May 2022. The event brings together Africa focused communications professionals across Rwanda and other parts of the continent to discuss how communication can strategically position African nations on the global stage, thereby strengthening their transformation agenda. 

Recent global governance issues such as climate, public health, trade, and security, have demonstrated that African actors are not passive agents in international relations. Strategic communication plays a fundamental role in improving their capabilities to exert various levels of agency and, increasingly, set the terms of engagement.

“Far too often, Africa has been framed as a place acted upon, not as a diverse continent with an evolving agenda of its own, however the increasing visibility of African leaders and experts in international organizations is bringing African narratives and interests into the mainstream” says Africa Communications Week co-founder Annie Mutamba.

Communicators from across the continent will gather in Kigali to identify concrete priority areas to promote African agency on the global stage. Working groups will be tasked to come up with clear, actionable recommendations for Africa-focused communicators to adopt.

“African agency should not be viewed as solely emanating from state actors. Africans from across public and private sector and civil society need to keep pushing for a seat at the table and this is where strategic communication can amplify their voice in shaping the global agenda.” Africa Communications Week co-founder Eniola Harrison explains

International speakers and facilitators at this year’s flagship event include Yolande Makolo (Rwanda Government Spokesperson), Mimi Kalinda (Africa Communications Media Group), Diana Mpyisi (Blue Oceans Rwanda), Nkiru Balonwu (Africa Soft Power Project), Uzo Madu (What’s in It for Africa), Joan Mazimhaka (Illume Creative Studio), Ndeye Diarra Diobaye (Euros Agency) and Fiona Kamikazi (PR Professional). 

“With today’s technology and digital communication tools Africa is able to talk to the world and we have more agency over what is said about us than ever before. Being able to come together and explore this as communications professionals from across the continent is a powerful and exciting opportunity. As KGL FWD, we are honored to be hosting this year’s Africa Communications Week flagship event and look forward to celebrating the evolution of our communications industry with the Rwanda Communications Network .” says Autumn Marie, managing director KGL FWD. 

Communication experts have a voice, they have resources and they have networks. They also need to be strategic and intentional about how they are deliberately shaping a narrative that is so vital to the transformation of the continent. As the world emerges from the Covid-19 pandemic, now more than ever, communicators should proactively support the economic recovery of the continent. 

Distributed by African Media Agency on behalf of Africa Communications Week.

About Africa Communications Week

Launched in 2017, Africa Communications Week is a bilingual (EN/FR) global movement building bridges between communications professionals committed to Africa’s transformation. AfricaCommsWeek is not meant exclusively for African professional but is open to international organisations and companies with a presence, a stake, interests or expertise in Africa 

AfricaCommsWeek’s mission is to empower and equip Africa-focused communications professionals with the tools and resources to change the current narratives about Africa. 

For Press Enquiries: 

info@africacommunicationsweek.com 

www.africacommunicationsweek.com 

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African Media Agency -English

Four tips for redeploying high-value skills within your organisation 

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JOHANNESBURG, South Africa, 19th May 2022 -/African Media Agency(AMA)/- The past two years have marked a seismic shift in the way companies manage, motivate, and retain their employees as hybrid work models and a more flexible work environment became commonplace. However, this has created new challenges, as many of the roles within the organisation changed or became obsolete.  

Genevieve Koolen, Human Resources Director at SAP Africa

According to Genevieve Koolen, Human Resources Director at SAP Africa, many companies are now having to implement strategies to redeploy skilled employees to other areas of the business. “What started out as an emergency measure to maintain productivity during the early stages of the pandemic has now become an embedded issue, where the duties of highly-skilled workers in some roles are being replaced or become entirely obsolete.” 

The changing role of managers 

One example of this change is the way managers are having to shift to other roles that don’t necessarily involve direct management of employees.  

“Companies have long taken a bums-in-seats approach to productivity and accountability that demanded that employees commute to a central office and work under the watchful gaze of their manager,” says Koolen. “One of the most surprising outcomes of the shift to work-from-home during the first year of the pandemic is the extent to which most professionals could self-manage. In some cases managers have become unnecessary to the smooth running of the business, resulting in a situation where their key skills need to be redeployed lest the business risks losing them to competitors.” 

According to Harvard Business Review, managers were traditionally selected and promoted based on their ability to manage and drive the performance of employees. However, the acceleration in the use of technology to improve workplace management combined with the impact of the pandemic has radically changed the situation at many organisations. 

Retaining high-value talent and experience 

“Managers and other high-value roles within organisations are having to shift focus and apply their skills in new areas,” says Koolen. “These changes are not always easy for either the employee or the organisation, but it is essential that companies implement policies and processes to retain their skills, as the employees often have extensive corporate knowledge that would take years for a replacement to learn.” 

According to Koolen, companies that can successfully redeploy these workers to other areas of the business will more easily retain their skills and ensure the organisation benefits from their expertise and experience.  

“Redeploying senior or specialist skills within the organisation can boost talent retention, drive cost savings, improve flexibility and efficiency and help build a more consistent company culture. However, it can be tricky to develop a strategy for redeployment that consistently delivers value to the business and employees.” 

Koolen offers four tips to assist organisations with developing a successful talent redeployment strategy: 

#1 Focus on skills, not tasks or titles 

Instead of trying to find a like-for-like role within the organisation – for example, a sales role in another department – focus on the employee’s skills and match those skills to another area of the business that can benefit from more access to those skills. “Managers, for example, often have inherent skills, experience and corporate knowledge that can help coach less experienced team members and enhance their capabilities, to the benefit of the broader organisation.” 

#2 Embed lifelong learning into the company culture 

According to McKinsey, one in sixteen workers will need to find a different occupation by 2030 as technology and other trends drive huge changes in how we work and what skills are required. “No one is immune to the disruptive influence of technology,” says Koolen. “Companies wishing to retain high-value skills in the long term must build a culture of lifelong learning that allows employees to continuously develop new skills and expertise that can add value in specific areas within the business.” 

#3 Accurately match skills to business needs 

Successful redeployment depends on having the right person at the right time for a specific task or duty. “In larger organisations, finding the right match is nearly impossible to do manually,” says Koolen. “Instead, companies need to build a comprehensive technology-led talent platform that brings visibility to the available skills within the organisation, and allows business and HR leaders to easily identify candidates for redeployment based on business and employee needs.” 

#4 Keep in tune with employee expectations  

New AI and analytics-driven employee experience tools can help companies keep their finger on the pulse of employee expectations by constantly getting real-time feedback on a broad spectrum of culture and workplace metrics. “Companies that can effectively use employee experience tools are more likely to take the right course of action to improve productivity, innovation, talent planning and people-led initiatives. When done well, this offers companies the opportunity to turn employees into ambassadors while driving positive business outcomes.” 

Distributed by African Media Agency (AMA) on behalf of SAP Africa.

Visit the SAP News Center. Follow SAP on Twitter at @SAPNews.

About SAP 

SAP’s strategy is to help every business run as an intelligent, sustainable enterprise. As a market leader in enterprise application software, we help companies of all sizes and in all industries run at their best: SAP customers generate 87% of total global commerce. Our machine learning, Internet of Things (IoT), and advanced analytics technologies help turn customers’ businesses into intelligent enterprises. SAP helps give people and organizations deep business insight and fosters collaboration that helps them stay ahead of their competition. We simplify technology for companies so they can consume our software the way they want – without disruption. Our end-to-end suite of applications and services enables business and public customers across 25 industries globally to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and make a difference. With a global network of customers, partners, employees, and thought leaders, SAP helps the world run better and improve people’s lives. For more information, visit www.sap.com.   

© 2022 SAP SE. All rights reserved. 

SAP and other SAP products and services mentioned herein as well as their respective logos are trademarks or registered trademarks of SAP SE in Germany and other countries. Please see https://www.sap.com/copyright for additional trademark information and notices.  

Note to editors: 

To preview and download broadcast-standard stock footage and press photos digitally, please visit www.sap.com/photos. On this platform, you can find high resolution material for your media channels. To view video stories on diverse topics, visit www.sap-tv.com. From this site, you can embed videos into your own Web pages, share video via email links, and subscribe to RSS feeds from SAP TV. 

For customers interested in learning more about SAP products:  

Global Customer Center: +49 180 534-34-24 

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African Media Agency -English

African Media Agency Partners with AFSIC one of the Largest Annual Events Showcasing Exceptional Opportunities Across the continent 

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The partnership aims to drive increased investment across the trade landscape in Africa and promote economic growth

ABIDJAN, Côte d’Ivoire, 12 May 2022, /African Media Agency/-African Media Agency, a leading pan-African PR and communications firm, today announced its partnership with Africa’s most important conduits of investment into Africa, AFSIC – Investing in Africa. The partnership aims to promote visibility and strengthen conversations around the investment opportunity and trade landscape of the continent at AFSIC 2022.

AFSIC is believed to be the largest annual event bringing together African investors and investments taking place outside Africa and has become one of the most important conduits of investment into Africa. AFSIC 2022 is entirely focused on bringing together Africa’s business leaders and Africa’s most important investors and dealmakers. The event will showcase investment opportunities from across the whole of Africa demonstrating new investment opportunities, with focused streams in Banking, Informed Investing, Building, Fintech Innovation, Sustainable Growth, Agriculture, and Power.

“African countries with growing economies are integral to global economic development. Since our inception it has been our core value to change the narrative of Africa by showcasing the development, innovation, and opportunity across the continent. AFSIC is the most accomplished investment event for the continent, and a meeting place for influential players in African business. Events like AFSIC provide the perfect forum for facilitating new conversations and relationships that promote economic success all over Africa. We are delighted to partner with AFSIC 2022.” Said CEO and Founder of African Media Agency, Eloïne Barry.

“I am excited about the potential of AFSIC once again providing an exceptional opportunity to network with sessions offering unparalleled opportunities to develop strong business relationships with investors, financial intermediaries and African business leaders through an array of multiple presentation and panel streams, discussions, networking events, exhibition stands, business match-making meetings and seminars.” Said Rupert McCammon, Managing Director of AFSIC
Since 2013, AFSIC continues to play a pivotal role as a business accelerator linking the different stakeholders of the international ecosystem, for more qualitative and inclusive growth. AFSIC 2022 is slated for 10 and 11 October 2022 in London.

Distributed by African Media Agency in partnership with AFSIC- Investing in Africa.

About African Media AgencyAfrican Media Agency (AMA) is an integrated communications agency that unifies PR, creative services, and digital marketing to create strategic, content-rich communications campaigns that inspire action and build value. With a footprint across Africa, we understand the dynamic of the African newsrooms, the challenges that journalists are going through, what makes a story interesting and the different styles and editorial cultures within the continent.

About AFSIC
AFSIC – Investing in Africa is a large-scale Event and Expo focused on matching business and investment opportunities in Africa. The event has grown over many years into one of the most important conduits of investment into Africa.

Notable characteristics include:

  • The event is attended by many of Africa’s most important investment firms
  • Networking is at the heart of AFSIC with multiple events allowing companies to meet appropriate investors
  • Dedicated Country Summits allow deep dives into some of Africa’s most important economies
  • Sector Focused workshops and sessions allow companies to focus on one or more of Africa’s high growth business sectors; e.g financial services, energy, agriculture, health etc.
  • Our sophisticated AFSIC African Investments Dashboard allows companies to upload investment propositions that can be viewed by Africa’s leading investors prior to AFSIC so that highly efficient investment meetings can be held within the AFSIC event to finalise investment deals
  • AFSIC – Investing in Africa builds on a massive network across Africa, and high profile digital platforms enabling companies to grow their business, trade and investment across the African continent

Media contact:Amy Minnie amy@amediaagency.com
Media contact:Olivia de Villiers olivia@africaninvestments.co

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