SAP Africa rolls out Social Sabbatical programme

May 20, 2013 • Enterprise

SAP today announced that it has been listed in Triple Pundit’s Top 10 Employee Engagement Strategies for its Social Sabbatical programme, whereby SAP’s most promising employees  from across the globe  support underserved communities in South Africa, Brazil and India, with the aim of providing mentorship and helping solve those communities’ most pressing challenges.

Pfungwa Serima, SAP Africa CEO. (Image source: File)

According to an Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) survey, sponsored by SAP, the world needs to create more than 500 million new jobs by 2020 to provide career opportunities for the unemployed as well as for young people who will be joining the workforce. The bulk of this challenge falls on countries in the developing world, including South Africa, Brazil and India.

SAP’s Social Sabbatical programme aims to contribute to addressing this challenge while also creating a foundation for employee learning and innovation with a focus on team volunteering, mentorship and coaching.

An international team of 30 SAP high potentials recently travelled to South African communities in Mabopane, Tembisa near Johannesburg and in Swaziland, bringing their business and IT expertise to local projects, such as the development of an efficient supply chain strategy to strengthen the local artisan sector. The programme also gave SAP employees a unique opportunity to further develop leadership skills, business acumen and connect with leaders and organisations from all over the world.

“An engaged workforce is critical to ensuring that SAP achieves its ambitious African goals,” said Pfungwa Serima, SAP Africa CEO. “Our objective is to increase our employee engagement index to 82% in 2013 (up from 79% in 2012). This is critical to foster a workforce culture based upon innovation and career development.”

Through various global initiatives from employee volunteering, philanthropy, youth and entrepreneurship mentorship programmes, more than 100 000 SAP employee hours have been invested in volunteering across the world. This has resulted in more than one million lives having been impacted and more than 1 000 non-profit organisations benefitting from SAP’s engaged workforce.

“Effective employee engagement is directly linked to our ability to innovate, deliver customer value, positively impact lives and ultimately become the engine for economic growth in Africa to help solve African problems,”

Staff Writer

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