05 Nov 2020

The Federation of Kenya Employers (FKE), has been at the forefront in driving or contributing to skills development in Kenya and the Africa  continent at large to meet the current and future needs of the labour market. Kenya’s primary goal in skills development is to provide its citizens with the requisite skills that will make them successful as either workers or entrepreneurs in any field of their choice. 

For this reason, the Federation has implemented various initiatives to influence policy on skills development. For instance, the Skills Mismatch Survey conducted in 2018 has assisted the Country identify gaps and informed the need for development of the National Skills Development Policy. Furthermore, different employability programmes like the Kenya Youth Empowerment Opportunities Project (KYEOP) emerged as a result of this study to ensure that the Youth have the right skills for the job market.  

 FKE also conducted a Study on Employers’ Perception and Capacity to implement the Work-Based Training, including Apprenticeships in Kitui, Kilifi and Busia Counties to help SME’s deliver and enhance the quality of their training programmes. Other studies conducted include Skilling East Africa Community and the Study on Free Movement of Labour and Skills in East Africa Community; among others. 

Some of the key findings from the studies indicate that Workplace based Training (WBT), although important in providing skills to the youth, are not standardized; training faculties need to have a direct link to employers; the need to harmonise the education and skills development policy with the industrial development policy in the country to ensure that the skills developed meet both the current and future needs of the economy.

The Federation continues to provide leadership in skills development by serving various boards and committees such as the National Industrial Training Authority; the Higher Education Loans Board; the National Employment Authority; and the Commission for University Education; and the Kenya Curriculum Development Institute, among others.

At the Continental level, FKE has been very active on skills development issues through the employers’ organization BUSINESSAfrica - Employers Confederation which hosts and coordinates the Skills Initiative For Africa (SIFA) for the whole of Africa.

We believe that skills development, lifelong learning and reforms in basic education are key to ensuring that the right skills outcome for Kenya. FKE has also advocated for exchange of young workers as envisioned in the East African Community (EAC) Common Market Protocol to ensure that our young people have the required skills, exposure and discipline to compete effectively in the labour market.

Currently, FKE is implementing a Female Future Leadership Programme that aims at building the capacity of women to take on top leadership positions in the corporate world, public institutions and other spheres. We launched the Girls in Technology Programme to inspire more girls to take on Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) subjects and also initiated a programme to link industry with the education and training providers both at the Technical and Vocational Education Training ( TVET)and Higher Education level.

The Federation believes that skills development requires concerted efforts therefore, all stakeholders must collaborate to ensure that Kenya gets it right in skills development. The success of any nation in the Future of Work and the Work of the Future will depend on the quality and quantity of skills and competencies that her citizens have to make them compete effectively in the global market. 

Our vision is that Kenya will be the to go to country for the acquisition of quality skills to meet the needs of the labour market.  

Written By
Jacqueline Mugo
Executive Director & CEO Federation of Kenya Employers