Global companies are supporting intricate tech in diverse parts of the world and stand to benefit from sourcing region-specific developers in places like South Africa. Tapping into the brightest technical resources starts with creating local opportunities and fostering an environment conducive to growth.

In augmenting their existing South African development team, GK Africa recognises the need for not only senior developers but also junior developers who can be trained to global standards, and whose skills can be advanced towards becoming senior developers. GK Africa has thus partnered with WeThinkCode_ to achieve their vision of a homegrown development team to support their solutions.

WeThinkCode_ is a software development training academy established in 2015 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Their mission is to recruit sharp young minds from underserved communities and train them to become work-ready software developers. The academy is tuition-free for students, enabling them to deliver quality tertiary education and direct pathways to meaningful work opportunities for youth from low-income households. In the context of South Africa’s current 63,5% youth unemployment rate and the local tech skills shortage, WeThinkCode_ acts as a bridge between talented young people and the economy.

Through this new partnership, GK plans to include select WeThinkCode_ graduates in an intensive training programme aimed at providing a solid foundation from which to grow within the GK development team. GK’s cloud4retail solution is highly complex and is rated number one globally, with the GK dev team being exceptionally talented and highly experienced in Java. GK is ARTS compliant, which translates into close adherence to development best practices.

“We were very impressed with the level of skill and experience of the students; they have proven themselves very competent and able to join a global company, and transition into a very complex environment. We are confident that with our training programme, these students will be able to contribute in a productive manner to our GK solution offerings,” says Eileen Clauss, senior manager: professional services EMEA – development.

GK Africa MD, Jan-Michael van Detten, adds: “Investment in the youth of South Africa is a smart move for GK: they come with incredible drive and skill sets. The partnership with WeThinkCode_ brings enormous value due to how they run their programme and training. These resources come with very solid Java development skills which has made it very easy for us to make this decision.”

WeThinkCode_ CEO Nyari Samushonga looks forward to creating more opportunities for their graduates through the partnership, stating, “I am truly excited by this partnership with GK software because it creates tangibly transformative long-term opportunities for our graduates. GK is a global leader in retail digital solutions, and with the digitisation of our world it means South Africa’s youth stand to benefit sustainably from GK’s decision to invest in WeThinkCode_ graduates.”

This exciting partnership fulfils GK’s responsibility to provide employment in South Africa while also growing the market’s skilled retail resource pool. GK welcomes this opportunity and is committed to providing what these students need to learn and thrive.