“I want to be the best professional technician
possible and, in the future, I would like to
open my own workshop!”
FASIL ASEFA, TECHNICIAN
Henock Tadesse was one of the first 27 students who graduated as a technician
in 2015. Like most of his classmates he soon found work. Now he is servicing
construction machines both at EBG’s workshop and on the premises of customers.
and some he knows from the Selam Technical
& Vocational Centre, where he got his training.
The school works in close collaboration with the
Volvo Group and its dealers.
HENOCK TADESSE IS another former Selam
student. Like Fasil Asefa, he joined EBG two
years ago but with construction equipment as his
“I like working here, because it gives you
many opportunities. But it can be challenging at
times. You must be physically fit, especially when
working with construction equipment since
you also need to service machines out in the
countryside,” he says.
The best part of the job is when he manages to
solve a problem and help a client – nothing beats
Henock Tadesse is also well aware that, in
Addis Ababa, having a job is not something that
can be taken for granted. Many of his friends are
unemployed, sometimes despite having gone to
university. By some estimates, half of all young
adults are under-employed.
At the same time, the Ethiopian economy is
moving ahead at full steam, even if the official
growth rate has dipped slightly after a decade
of two-digit growth. The country is seeking to
overtake Kenya as the economic powerhouse of
East Africa and is positioning itself to be the next
hub for global manufacturing.
THE BIG PARADOX is that one of the
impediments to continued growth here is the
lack of skilled labour. In particular, there a
shortage of trained technicians that can service
all the trucks and construction equipment
needed in the building boom.
For Samuel Desta, who heads the EBG
workshop, finding the right staff is always a
“Having skilled technicians is absolutely
crucial for us, so that we can give good service to
the trucks and machines we sell,” he says.
Ideally, he wants to recruit trained technicians
from a school where they have already acquired
basic knowledge about the automotive sector
and had a chance to acquaint themselves with
the heavy-duty vehicles on the market. But, in
Ethiopia, there are few training centres and
those that exist tend to be very theoretical due to
a lack of modern training facilities.
“Selam Vocational School is an exception and
we have already recruited nine technicians from
them. We’re really grateful to Volvo and the
other partners for helping us fill the gap here,”
Samuel Desta says.
VOLVO GROUP MAGAZINE 2.2018 43