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Landscape Scan on Digital tools for Worker Enablement 

Feb 26, 2024 | Research

By Manan Sharma

Digital Tools for Worker Enablement have emerged in the global jobtech landscape, but – with exceptions – are yet to truly arrive on the African continent. They address critical infrastructure gaps for workers in the platform economy, arising partly due to the rapid growth of the jobtech landscape globally. These include challenges like aggregating ratings across platforms, obtaining insurance or loans, and connecting with peers for negotiations.

Our landscape scan explores the segment through mature models in Europe, North America, and Latin America, anticipating increased prevalence in Africa in the future. We categorizes Digital Tools for Worker Enablement into three subcategories: Identity/Reputation, Alternative Data Tools/Benefits, and Rights/Legal/Collective Engagement and explore prominent start-ups (e.g., Smile Identity in Africa for Identity/Reputation, Nippy in Latin America and Flance in Africa for Alternative Data Tools/Benefits category, Symplifica in Colombia for Rights/Legal/Collective Engagement platforms).

Digital Tools for Worker Enablement Taxonomy

Identity / ReputationPlatforms which enable users to verify or use their professional identity or reputation to enhance livelihoods outcomes
Alternative data tools / benefitsDigital services which enable jobtech platform workers to use their data to improve livelihoods outcomes, access benefits or similar services. This could include some fintechs built on top of platform data
Rights / legal / collective engagementDigital platforms which build worker rights through collaborative engagement, legal engagement, or others

The sector is quite nascent, which holds both challenges and opportunities. As more people earn their incomes digitally and the jobtech landscape in Africa grows, this category of platforms will become increasingly viable and important. 

For a more in-depth understanding of Digital tools for Worker Enablement in Sub-Saharan Africa, you can access our landscape scan here

A short version of this Landscape Scan is also available as a video-based e-learning course on the VC4A website here

The Author, Manan Sharma, is a Venture Building Extern at the Jobtech Alliance


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