Left to right: Franco Cotumaccio, Sadick Jaffer, Rudi Dicks, Ricardo Mackenzie, Adjoa Ayivor, Lance Greyling, Aeysha Coetzee, David Neale
Following an announcement earlier this year, Sigma Connected South Africa, which offers ‘white label’ customer contact centre services across a variety of sectors, has now opened its Watergate Centre facility in the Cape Flats, becoming the first GBS operation to provide contact centre services from Mitchells Plain.
With plans to create 1,000 new roles in Mitchells Plain and nationally by 2025, many through Impact Sourcing, the contact centre was unveiled by the head of the Project Management Office, in the Private Office of the President, Rudi Dicks, who is working closely with the President Cyril Ramaphosa on the unemployment programme.
Ambassador Sadick Jaffer, chief director for Investment Promotion and Facilitation at the Department of Trade, Industry and Competition, assisted Dicks and other delegates in cutting the ribbon to open the new contact centre.
The event was hosted by Sigma Connected’s managing director David Neale and attended by over 50 guests, plus the first 90 employees who have joined the business in Mitchells Plain.
David Neale, managing director of Sigma Connected South Africa said: “I am proud that we have become the first GBS operation in Western Cape to provide contact centre solutions from Mitchells Plain. Our investment has given a real focus and profile to this community and will create careers for many years to come.
"So far we have received over 800 applications for jobs, with 300 being received within the first few hours of advertising the roles. I am pleased to say all of these came from local people living in Mitchells Plain.
"Over the next three years we are planning to hire more than 1,000 people across South Africa and we hope to replicate this model to make a real difference in similar communities across the country.
"With national youth unemployment rates currently over 70%, we hope other businesses will follow our lead and the opportunity to tackle the problem by creating lasting careers.”
Through its impact sourcing partner, Shadow Careers, which is also based in Mitchells Plain’s Watergate Centre, the company has hired over 60% of its employees from excluded backgrounds.
Franco Cotumaccio, director and co-founder of Shadow Careers added: “Sigma Connected South Africa shares our vision for creating meaningful career opportunities for excluded youth. We are excited about Sigma Connected opening their call centre operations right next to our new career creation centre in Mitchells Plain.”
“Our shared vision creates a new model for the future sustainability of the GBS sector, which could be replicated across the country to encourage others to invest in similar communities.”
“Shadow's aspiration is national and we are looking for partners to help us achieve this goal, thereby substantially increasing job creation.”
“An essential part of creating these outcomes is partnering with purpose.”
Sigma Connected, part of the South African owned Digicall Group, supports businesses in the telecommunications, retail, insurance, financial services, government and logistics industries. They employ over 2,000 people in South Africa across a number of offices in Cape Town and Johannesburg.
In June, Sigma Connected was the only GBS company invited to the National Youth Opportunities Expo as part of this year’s annual Youth Day. At the event, Neale and colleagues met with the President to discuss Sigma Connected’s growth plans and success in tackling youth unemployment. It capped a successful month after the company won nine awards at the 2022 Cape BPO Awards.
Last year, the company was awarded the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE) New Compliance Certification – Level 1 by the government for its work to support people from disadvantaged backgrounds.
For more information on the Sigma Connected Group and its services, readers can visit www.sigmaconnected.com/za.
For more information on Shadow Careers and its services, readers can visit www.shadowcareers.co