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Across Africa, the Covid-19 pandemic has brought about unprecedented changes in the workplace. 

The International Labour Organisation (ILO) has conducted continent-wide surveys and interviews with firms to find out how the disruption caused by the virus is playing out. 

The report details how hybrid work is here to stay and how firms have harnessed productivity improvements during the pandemic, but other matters such as gender inequality took a backward step.

The issues identified in the report have wide-ranging implications for public policy and suggest the need for accelerating policy and institutional reforms for an enabling business environment, including the vast body of employment law that will need to be updated. 

During a recent Business Day Dialogue, hosted by ILO, Deborah France-Massin, director of the ILO's Bureau for Employers Activities, highlighted the workplace trends that are emerging in the post-pandemic environment and how businesses are responding to these trends.

During this virtual panel discussion, which was moderated by well-known broadcast personality Francis Herd, France-Massin was joined by a series of esteemed speakers including:

  • Cynthia Samuel-Olonjuwon, the ILO's assistant director-general and regional director for Africa;
  • Cas Coovadia, CEO of Business Unity SA; and
  • Jonathan Goldberg, CEO of Global Business Solutions.

Together they explored:

  • How the pandemic is affecting the workforce, workspace and wellbeing of people;
  • Which pandemic-induced changes will be transformative;
  • Key workplace priorities for employers for the next one, five and 10 years; and
  • The wider societal impacts of changes to the workplace.

Watch a recording of the webinar above, or click here to watch it in French.