Three key sectors are driving employment figures mid-pandemic

Health, communication and transport have shown a significant increase in employment figures, analysis shows.

Pharmaceuticals and healthcare, communications and IT as well as transport and logistics are the three industries showing a significant increase in employment figures when compared to last year, despite the fact that the global pandemic and a depressed economy, among other things, remain consistent influencers.

This is according to Marc Privett, general manager at, which has analysed jobs published online on job boards and corporate career sites that allow for insights and comparisons on a national scale.

“The reasons are manifold. Yes, the demands of Covid-19 with regards to distribution, healthcare, and remote working, et. al has very likely influenced employment demand, however certain industries consistently have a higher resource requirement than others,” he says.

This is due, in part, to market demand flowing from the very nature of the role these industries play and the requirements they fulfil. Recent reports confirmed South Africa’s pharmaceutical market as the largest in sub-Saharan Africa, with multi-billion rand expenditure.

The ICT sector has proven itself as the backbone of both developed and developing economies, with recent reports by the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (Icasa) stating that “the telecommunications sector is a critical part of modern lifestyles and has significant influence on the growth of the country's economy as it strengthens productivity levels” and that “South Africa's telecommunications sector has continued to grow despite the economic challenges faced by the nation.”

A recent article by PricewaterhouseCoopers has highlighted that “South Africa tops the list for having the most developed transport and logistics sector in sub-Saharan Africa, placing it on a par with some of the world’s industrialised countries and that South Africa is also regarded as the best performer in Africa when it comes to trade facilitation logistics and among the best in terms of transport infrastructure.”

Marc says, “It is clearly evident that, irrespective of economic hardship and the economic impact of the last two years as well as other societal factors, certain industries and ‘job types’ will always be in demand due to a country’s need and requirements.”

Other industries showing similar employment growth in comparison to last year this time are:
• Construction (42 percent),
• Consultancy (59 percent),
• Legal (36 percent),
• Marketing/Media (42 percent),
• Production/ Manufacturing (46 percent), and
• Science/ Research (54 percent).

“These numbers are encouraging. An increase in employment leads to increased earnings. This, in turn, has a ripple effect on consumer spending, positively benefitting other businesses and resulting in a healthier economy overall,” Marc adds.