The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted labor markets globally. The consequences have been sudden and severe. Data from the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) shows that about 2 million workers lost their jobs between March and June 2020 when Kenya imposed coronavirus-induced lockdown that led to layoffs and pay cuts.
There is a need to respond in innovative ways to determine competencies that businesses need.
George Ngugi is one such innovative person, when he could no longer find any source of income he dared to join an online business. Armed with just a phone, he approached his friend who ran a salon business and asked her for a little space for his online operations.
His friend who had extra space at Neema salon in Kabati agreed to sublet it to him at a small fee. That is how George became a Jumia Pickup station agent.
George was among the few vendors that jumped onto the eCommerce wagon to survive the hard economic times caused by the pandemic.
“I met a Jumia employee (JForce agent) who told me about the power of the internet and I was quick to jump on it since it did not require much capital. I was excited to learn that I can earn up to Ksh 50,000 per month by becoming Jumia pick-up stations & by helping customers in the Muranga area place orders”, said George Ngugi.
More and more business owners continue to grapple with the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the benefits of switching over to online platforms are more evident than ever.
“Jumia is a big company and with that comes bigger expectations as more Jumia customers will now collect their orders from my shop at a cheaper delivery fee”, added George who believes that this will further expand his knowledge about online sales and boost his revenue.
E-commerce continues to create new opportunities for SMEs to grow, and job opportunities for a new generation to thrive.