World Bank Group tops African Business magazine’s 2016 Careers in Africa Employer of Choice Ranking

African Business magazine has released its annual “Employer of Choice” ranking. The World Bank Group tops this year’s ranking. The survey is based on a range of criteria, termed “attraction drivers”, which rank companies and institutions from the perspective of employees – both in terms of what they offer and how they are perceived in terms of the best places to work in Africa.

The ranking is a collaboration between African Business magazine, recruitment and career specialists Careers in Africa and global HR consultants Willis Towers Watson. Over 20,000 graduates and employees responded to the survey, making it the most comprehensive study of its kind. Based on 100 questions, the employee-centred global ranking provides a quantitative analysis of what makes a great employer – from popularity to choosability.

This year’s study ranks the World Bank Group as the strongest employer brand in terms of Employer Value Proposition. Interestingly, in what is a difficult time for the oil and gas industry globally, two companies from that sector take the second and third spots: Exxon Mobil and Chevron respectively.

Explaining this year’s results Sarah Roe, co-founder of the Global Career Company and an African recruitment specialist, says that “making an impact” was a key attraction driver for prospective employees. In essence, the number one retention driver for African talent is more about “buying into really good leadership, belief in the business and really feeling that they’re part of something worthwhile”.

Since the launch of their company, she says, there have been significant changes, most notably in the reverse brain drain and in greater demand for pan-African experience. Work-life balance and social impact is just as important now as financial reward.

In an exclusive interview with the magazine, Julie Essiam, Ecobank’s Group Head of HR and Corporate Affairs also shares her thoughts on how her bank manages its 20,000 plus talent pool. Central to Ecobank’s Employer Value Proposition is the desire to make a critical contribution to transforming Africa. One of her main challenges as head of HR is developing leadership skills. “We are building leadership capability right from the beginning of the talent pipeline all the way to the end. We feel that this is a key enabler to transformation,” she says.

Ensuring that potential recruits share this value proposition is a central aspect of the bank’s recruitment process. Essiam is confident that this culture is permeating the whole organisation and it is, she believes, one of the key reasons that candidates choose to work for Ecobank.

She adds that HR should be central to any company that wants to grow and make an impact, and that it is much more than overseeing quotas or setting salary bands: “Ecobank is putting HR at the centre of its strategy. This strategy was formed to lead the transformation of Africa and to support the vision from the top down, impacting economic and social development”.

The December issue of African Business is on sale now. The Special Report can also be downloaded via the app store and online at

Ladybrille Magazine

Founded in 2007, Ladybrille® Magazine is a California based pioneer digital publication demystifying the image of Africans in the west through contemporary African fashion and celebrating the brilliant woman in business and leadership, with an emphasis on the African woman in the diaspora. Our coverage includes stories on capital, access to markets, expertise, hiring and retention, sales, marketing, and promotions.

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