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Workday plans certifications, skills development in SA

By , Africa editor
Africa , 24 Nov 2023
Workday co-president Doug Robinson.
Workday co-president Doug Robinson.

Financial and human resources enterprise cloud firm Workday intends to invest in certification and talent development programmes, notably in South Africa.

Workday co-president Doug Robinson disclosed the company's objectives for the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) in an interview with ITWeb Africa last week, on the sidelines of the company's annual conference, Workday Rising EMEA, in Barcelona.

Robinson discussed the necessity of investing in Workday certifications and creating fresh talent in the EMEA region, as well as delivering non-affiliated Workday training for universities.

He said that plans for this are already in the works as the firm pursues its expansion strategy for growth regions, such as South Africa.

The focus in South Africa, he said, is on education and resource development, as well as helping existing customers and onboarding new ones.

"The strategy for the EMEA region is to invest in Workday certifications, skills, and resources," he said. “Workday is experimenting with non-affiliated Workday training in universities to broaden the community's skill set."

For Africa, Robinson said: "The most important thing we can do is continue to invest in Workday certifications, skills, and resources within the region. This is essential, especially for certain (segments) of our South African customers.

“We're doing something called non-affiliated Workday training. Traditionally, our training has always been for customers, existing customers, so you have to buy from us first to get training, or you have to be a certified partner to get training on Workday. We're now partnering with universities, and we're doing experimentation with this in Japan and the US, where we're providing the curriculum. So, university students coming out will have basic Workday skills certification so they can go into the workforce.”

Robinson added: “For Workday to be successful, particularly in the South African market, we'll have to do more of that type of investing. There has to be more of a community. Right now, it's still small, but it's growing. And so this is probably the number one thing we could do to help grow internationally in these important markets and emerging markets, for us is increase the skill set in the community.”

In addition, a Workday official stated that the most pressing goal for Workday in Africa is to onboard and train new partners, with plans to begin in February (the start of the company’s financial year).

According to Robinson, the EMEA region is a ‘substantial piece of our business and an important region for us to be present in’.

He added that Workday is on a growth trajectory and has crossed a billion dollars in revenue, with EMEA being a vital element of this.

On the company’s near-term ambitions for Africa, Robinson said: "We brought on a new partner to help support our existing customers there and to help us grow new customers.

“We are a direct selling and support business. That will continue to be the case in Africa, and South Africa. But we also have partners who do the deployments, so we're recruiting another partner, which we just onboarded.”

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