Concor Construction’s history of investing in youth now has a special relevance: helping young South Africans to develop agility for a challenging future.
According to Donique de Figueiredo, employee engagement and talent manager at Concor Construction, agility is one of the company’s core values – a quality that has been tested by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Now more than ever, we are living in times of volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity,” says De Figueiredo. “Globalisation, technological advancement, the fourth industrial revolution and pandemics like Covid-19 are our reality.”
In line with the company’s focus on education and skills development as critical drivers of transformation, she says empowered youth can adopt an agile attitude that will prepare them to confront and conquer challenges.
“For Concor, youth development is more than events that are celebrated once a year,” she says. “We ensure that our contribution is strategic and widespread, enabling greater economic access and participation.”
Concor’s external initiatives target youth across the education spectrum, from senior primary school through to tertiary education and beyond – to out-of-school youth and even young entrepreneurs. At schools, this includes extra tuition and resources for learners, focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
There is also a targeted bursary programme aimed at students interested in the built environment, and a graduate mentorship programme to absorb graduates as interns. Out-of-school youth can participate in learnerships, which the company also uses to identify talent. Start-up enterprises within the built environment value chain are supported by Concor’s enterprise and supplier development programme.
Internally, Concor develops future leaders within the business through leadership development of young people who show exceptional performance and high potential.
“We focus on youth to build a talent pipeline, not only for our business and our industry but for the general economy,” says De Figueiredo. “In a country where youth unemployment exceeds 50%, our investment in youth development is aimed at serving the greater good.”
Donique de Figueiredo, employee engagement and talent manager at Concor Construction.
Concor’s external initiatives extend across the education spectrum, and include Grade 7 mathematics support.
Support for learners is through partnerships including the Tomorrow Trust Saturday School Programme.
An outreach by Concor to secondary schools in the Western Cape.
Pretty Tshabalala, founder and manager of Gomolemo Trading, a youth and female owned enterprise and supplier development beneficiary within Concor.
The Concor Future Leaders Programme identifies talented individuals younger than 35 years old.