How can artificial intelligence create new opportunities for human capital in Africa?

Goldstein Nicolas
5 min readDec 4, 2018


Talenteum Remote Team

Is artificial intelligence ( AI ) a boom to African human capital? From the outset, we would be tempted to say “no”. The collective imagination is marked by the class struggle, the high rate of unemployment in our modern societies.. The latter are impressive in the cinema, especially when they present a world of nanobots self-replicating, out of control, consuming all the ecosystems of the earth. But it is not tomorrow the day before and far from raising the unemployment rate, AI would surely relieve many economies, today more than ever, especially those of the African continent.

The indispensable artificial intelligence

Nowadays, a growing number of domains resort to artificial intelligence for their development. This technology designed and manufactured by humans is based on robotics and computer science. It allows machines to imitate a form of human intelligence. Its contribution is not negligible in all the sectors where it is introduced. According to recruitment service specialists, hiring time can go from 34 days to 9 days thanks to an AI-orchestrated sourcing algorithm. The recruitment deadlines are therefore reduced. This can be understood by the time spent filtering thousands of CVs. The computer, calibrated and tuned according to the algorithm, does so in just a few hours while removing the stereotypes and finding candidates technically suitable for this position.

The use of AI in the recruitment sector does not stop there. Candidate selection is also done through technology. It can also collect information from social networks, old jobs on the web and educational qualifications. This is how the most promising candidates can be selected once the acceptance criteria defined by the company and the profile of the candidate are set. One can even consider a ranking based on a scale of values ​​on information such as experience, work history, skills and salary expectations in order to find the right person. The value of this contribution in recruitment is unimaginable. The data processing, allows to locate the passive candidates, that is to say, the most sought candidates, namely those which are an asset for the company.

The challenge of African human capital

The challenge for African human capital is to take advantage of the demographic dividend that the continent currently enjoys. For the next two decades, sub-Saharan Africa will have more workers than the rest of the world. This young generation will need well-paying jobs. However, the lights are red. Migration to the West is important, in 2025 no less than 34 million African migrants should leave in Europe according to the IMF (International Monetary Fund), against only 7 million, 3 years of that. And the economic development of Africa can not be done without its most qualified skills. The booming sectors, particularly in the extractive industries, energy, water and infrastructure, but also health, education, research and telecoms suffer from this deficit. The job market is affected, but not only. According to the World Bank, the migration of graduates from higher education has increased. And the ratio of scientists and researchers in the population is 79 to one million inhabitants while the world average is 1081 to one million. The few skills available to Africa are fleeing.

How could AI create new opportunities for this African human capital?

The economic challenge in sub-Saharan Africa is to quickly revive the economy while having this young and dynamic population, and filling at the same time, the deficit of skilled labor. Governments must redouble their development efforts to repatriate skills and return to stable economic growth. However, the real salvation comes from the diversification of the economy in terms of qualified profiles. This involves the urgent and successful implementation of reforms that will increase productivity.

The challenge is to create 450 million new jobs in the next 20 years. These saving reforms inevitably involve technology, especially digital technology. Artificial Intelligence allows the recruitment of talents and skills sought as soon as possible. The data processing is efficient and allows to identify the right skills for the corresponding positions, quickly. This technology researches and selects several candidates over a short period, with formidable efficiency. The most promising profiles for the required tasks are then identified according to the acceptance criteria defined by the company. However, the relationship of Africans to new technologies must necessarily be on the same wavelength.

Everything suggests that Africa is ready to enter the digital age. Young Africans are like “rough diamonds to polish”. They use digital technology to make a quantum leap towards emergence, because the population is now forming itself through lessons disseminated on different platforms. Digital technology enables European, American and Asian companies to engage in these new emerging markets at lower cost through the outsourcing of services. It sort of defines a new HR profile. And the African continent represents a strong potential.

According to a study by the firm Korn Ferry, the world’s major economic powers today could miss 80 million talents by 2030 for positions with high qualifications. At the same time, the continent’s population growth is expected to increase further to reach the 2 billion mark with 80% of its population under 30. In addition, African engineers are training themselves using the facilities provided by the Internet.

Talenteum’s goal

Talenteum sets up remote teams for clients who are often based in Europe. The company is recruiting in Madagascar, Cameroon, Nigeria. The customer will pay the engineers at cost price with the social charges and our service charges. Talenteum is committed to finding the right profile based on their criteria. The company finds these resources in its database, from the web designer to the operator of “data-centers” …

The goal is to bring together the best Tech talent from the African continent. Talenteum has an excellent academic network with the best global schools that have partnerships in Africa. This promotes exchanges and interconnectivity between skills for the sake of startups and foreign investors as well. The customer feels it and appreciates this differentiation in the way of assimilating knowledge.

Artificial intelligence allows Africans to think differently about how work is constructed. She brings an offset. Work is no longer built around the product and the tasks to be done in a chain, but around problems and behaviors. Man and machine would participate in this objective: humans to the social process of knowledge creation, machines to the infallible application of these discoveries.



Goldstein Nicolas

Outsourcing expert since 2004, serial entrepreneur. Co-founder of