In a transformative initiative to combat youth unemployment, Jobs Boost, a R300-million outcomes fund, has been launched by Krutham, the research-led consulting house.

Jobs boost Logo

This innovative programme is a unique opportunity for skills development providers to deliver sustainable employment solutions for the nation’s youth, particularly those who have historically faced obstacles in securing employment.

Unlike traditional approaches to job creation, which tend to focus on inputs and activities like training, workshops and events, the Jobs Boost Outcomes Fund uses an outcomes-based pay-for-performance model that ensures funds are allocated upon the successful placement and sustained employment of young people in quality jobs.

Riyaadh Ebrahim, programme director at Krutham, highlights the programme’s innovative approach: “Jobs Boost challenges skills development organisations to think beyond traditional methods. We’re looking for partners who can demonstrate real results in placing young people in quality jobs, aligning training with the actual needs of the job market.”

Initiated and managed by Krutham and funded by the Department of Higher Education and Training’s National Skills Fund (NSF) as part of the Presidential Youth Employment Intervention (PYEI), Jobs Boost represents a paradigm shift in tackling youth unemployment. The first phase is a pilot, and the National Skills Fund is the sole outcomes funder.

Ebrahim says that Jobs Boost opens a new frontier for training companies. This initiative is a partnership that goes beyond funding – it is a commitment to equip South Africa’s youth with the skills and opportunities they need for meaningful employment.

Jobs Boost offers a unique chance for skills development organisations to apply their expertise in a results-driven funding environment. The funding will be released to successful applicants as outcomes are achieved, based on specific milestones verified by an outcomes auditor, including enrolment in the programme (20% of funding flows), job placement (40% of funding flows), and sustained employment over three months (20% of funding flows) and then six months (20% of funding flows).

Skills providers interested in participating in Jobs Boost can submit expressions of interest through the Jobs Boost Outcomes Fund website (jobsboost.org.za) until 14 December 2023. Prospective implementation partners should not be employers themselves, however, they may have a formal relationship with employers to ensure successful placement. The selection will be based on a transparent and consistent evaluation process, focusing on the realism of proposals, job targets, and value for money. Selected organisations will then be invited to present detailed proposals, demonstrating their capability to deliver tangible employment outcomes.

Jobs Boost sets clear criteria for what constitutes a ‘quality job’, including full-time employment status (at least 30 hours of work per week), contracts that run for a minimum of 12 months, compliance with employment laws, and salaries at or above the minimum wage. This ensures that young people benefit from meaningful and sustainable employment opportunities. Candidates must be between the ages of 18–34, registered on the PYEI database via the sayouth.mobi platform, an attendee of a quintile 1, 2 or 3 public school or a beneficiary of the Child Support Grant (CSG) as a child, and their highest level of education should be Matric.

“This is an opportunity for training companies to leverage their skills and resources to make a significant impact on youth unemployment in South Africa. This collaboration is not just a funding opportunity, it’s a chance to be part of a national movement towards empowering the youth with relevant skills and sustainable job opportunities,” concludes Ebrahim.

For more information on how to apply, eligibility criteria, and the support available, training providers are invited to visit jobsboost.org.za and become part of this groundbreaking initiative.