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Tuesday, October 01, 2019

Andela: The pity seeking talent shylocks

Before falling my hand, Andela set out to develop developers and we were all happy! Midway, they are now making it look as if business is tough and they need to pivot. This move, if unchallenged with a solid response, will cause much more problems for our fragile but growing tech space.

Initial Model - 1
1. Hire greenhorns
2. Train them for 6 months to be developers
3. Connect them to those who need developers, mainly in the US
4. Split the dough and recoup investment.
5. Smile to the offshore bank while wringing the fingers
6. Release them after say ... 5 years

While Andela was developing the Nigerian/African talents who need a little more than 6 months to be up and running, other organizations in the US were also incubating developers, to be ready to compete with the influx of the Andela African talents. They succeeded there, mainly because American developers do not need as much initial training as we do.

Revised model - 2
1. Hire middle level Trained Africans.
2. They are plenty because average $$ will be mega NN
3. Train them for 3 months to Managers of developers
4. Connect them to those who need managers in the US and other regions, just like our Doctors, and our Professors etc.
5. Split the dough and recoup much much more
6. Smile to the offshore bank while wringing palms
5. Release them after say 10 or more years

Hopefully, those released in model 1 will have learnt management in their anchor period, and will be ready to join the enhanced gravy train in model 2, in say 4 years time. Andela has saved the costs of paying their salaries for those 4 years!

So, actually .. Andela is not leaving Nigeria, it is simply cutting costs and securing its source of raw materials while making it look like "Business is Hard, they need a tax break". Don't be fooled.

Have they developed African Talents? I will ask you ... Have they done it for 5 years? ... if not, end of discussions!

Who developed our Doctors in the Middle East? Our Nurses in America nko? or our Professors all over the world? Stellar talent is second nature, out of our harsh environment and its challenges.

What the Nigerian Government needs to do as soon as possible (ASAP) ...

1. Round those talents up. Pay them for the remaining duration of their contract.

2. Using them to develop our Tech space. By developing our tech space, I mean doing anything including motivational talks, building algorithms to decongest our roads using AI, or simply nothing, like benched International Players that they are, just to make sure that they are not picked up like crumbs by some sharks waiting in the wings.

3. Insist that those coming in with any Development-like agenda obtain some permits from the relevant Government agencies. Don't let us be fooled that we are being helped!

4. Holistically manage our talent pool. Talent Management is no longer child's play. The world has moved away from production economics to talent and talent management.

5. Be reasonable with this, and do not do it on a quota basis, just the way we do not select our National Football team using the established geo-political quota. We all love to win, and we must win here.

6. Thank me after 5 years, with nothing less than a GCON or its equivalent in bitcoins.

*Contributed by Rev. Sunday Folayan, MD Skannet

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