Since 2010, redPanda Software has implemented an internship programme whereby the company takes on up to 10 unemployed graduates for a 12-month internship. These internships receive MICT SETA funding, although redPanda Software has self-funded many other interns. To date, the company has taken on over 70 interns, and not surprisingly, most of these interns have remained at the company.
In addition to the initial recruitment process, what differentiates redPanda Software’s approach to interns is the company’s selection and support of mentors. redPanda Software has sent a number of key role-players on mentorship training programmes that are NQF aligned. These programmes have been sponsored by the Department of Economic Development and Tourism (DEDAT). The company has also partnered with experts to spearhead one-on-one coaching sessions with employees.
We place great emphasis on networking and forming key partnerships, and we are, for example, affiliated to the Apprenticeship Game Changer programme with DEDAT in the Western Cape Government. We are also immensely grateful to MICT SETA and Kiru Truman amongst others for their consistent support throughout the years.
Other partnership initiatives include participating in job shadowing and volunteering at Career Awareness days at high schools, colleges and universities.
“Fundamentally, any success within skills development and job creation requires vision and buy-in from leadership,” adds CEO Gareth Hawkey. It has to start at the top, with leaders acknowledging the immense value that youngsters can bring – and the many long-term benefits of actively investing in our youth.”