Employers are urged to consider looking to the new job centres created through a partnership by the Gauteng Provincial Government and Lulaway for entry-level employees.

The walk-in job centres are being rolled out into townships and communities in Gauteng in order to attract and screen entry-level job candidates where they live, and to present screened, trained candidates already filtered to employers’ specific requirements.

The first job centre will be live by Monday in Tembisa, with 20 sites up and running by the end of the current financial year (March 2013).

The goal is to process up to 8 000 job seekers during that time and place 5 000 of them in employment.

The Gauteng Provincial Government will invest about R4,6-million in setting up the job centres, employing staff to man them and purchasing the required hardware.

Lulaway has developed the software and systems that make the project feasible.

How it works is that either first time job seekers or unemployed young people will walk into the Lulaway job centres. They will be helped through the process of registering on the portal and creating their CVs. They will also receive basic instruction in soft skills like interview techniques and self presentation.

The key challenges facing young job seekers have been identified as poor access to information; a lack of soft skills; accessibility of job-related information; and a skills mismatch.

Job seekers will also be screened through basic testing to determine their skills level and, where relevant, may receive training to fill in skills gaps that have been identified by potential employers.

From the employers’ side, they will specify the candidates they wish to interview and will then receive a pre-screened and filtered list of young people who fit their criteria.

The system is aimed at matching inexperienced or relatively low-skilled job seekers with relevant employment; while lowering risks for employers by ensuring the candidates are a good match for the positions offered.

Dis-Chem has been involved in a pilot project, employing a number of cashiers through the system. HR director Saul Lever says the system was cost-effective, easy to use and provided the company with a good skills match.