LMI programme > Publications

Investigating employer interaction with the Employment Services of South Africa (ESSA)

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Corporate author/s:

Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC); Labour Market Intelligence Partnership (LMIP)

Person/s author/s:

Paterson, Andrew; Chabane, Sybil; Arends, Fabian


working paper



The focus of the present study is to investigate employer interaction with the Department of Labour's Employment Services of South Africa (ESSA) system and to consider the status of ESSA in the context of employer perceptions of, and engagement with, various recruitment channels available to employers. The study explores how the actual sectoral location of employers, their skills needs, and their perceptions of ESSA services can influence how employers interact with the free government matching service. In turn, employer behaviour impacts on the extent to which ESSA's administrative data can be used as part of the system of demand-side data that is needed for skills planning purposes. To address these issues, a survey methodology was adopted that canvassed employers' attitudes to, interactions with and experiences of ESSA and was supplemented by a number of interviews with Labour Centre managers.

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