Safaricom is a leading telecommunication company in East Africa ensuring over 42 million customers stay connected. They also run one of the world’s largest mobile money transfer systems, M-PESA, empowering over 30 million customers to transact, save, or borrow money through their mobile phones.

Tanya Braganza is the Technology Talent Manager at Safaricom and program manager for the Discover Graduate program—seeking to develop diverse future leaders using an agile model that enables graduates to learn through a combination of work experience and training.

About Safaricom


Company Size
6,000+ Employees

East Africa

We wanted to make our program more efficient for higher volumes and provide a candidate experience that you can’t get elsewhere.

Tanya Braganza, Technology Talent Manager at Safaricom

Labor-intensive Hiring Drives Change

Tanya and her team realized that although their Graduate program was successful, the process was not working. As she explains, “Our graduate program involved two weeks of in-person assessments and interviews near our offices. Candidates would often have to travel far to join us, and hiring managers would take two weeks out of their busy schedules to be involved—neither of which was ideal.”

Tanya and her team also were not convinced that they were always making the right decisions, “As the program was manual, it was prone to mistakes, so we weren’t confident that we were objectively selecting the best graduates on each intake.”

As Safaricom’s focus on graduates moved towards the technology side of the business, they used the opportunity to review hiring processes and stand out in a more competitive marketplace.

SHL Helps Create Stand-Out Online Candidate Experience

After already benefitting from using SHL’s cognitive assessments, Safaricom approached SHL to expand their partnership, as Tanya outlines, “We wanted a way for candidates to apply remotely and an experience that was simple and accessible to ensure we cater to those with disabilities or impairments.”

Safaricom chose SHL’s Smart Interview On Demand, which enabled candidates to record a video response in their own time to custom questions that Safaricom identified as relevant to the role. Safaricom was able to combine the Smart Interview solution with the cognitive assessments in a single platform that was simple and clear for candidates to complete.

The interview videos could then be used by hiring managers, alongside assessment results to shortlist candidates before the final stage of the selection process—presenting a case study to the hiring panel.

As Tanya says, “We could share the culture and program benefits that Safaricom would offer successful candidates and brand the interface in our vibrant colors, so it looked attractive.”

Tanya also worked with SHL to ensure there was educational material and a chatbot to help with any questions throughout the process, aiding accessibility requirements.

The solution was so easy to setup. SHL provided a clear project plan showing exactly what to expect and when. Having SHL’s expertise really helped to design the platform with best practices in mind.

Tanya Braganza, Technology Talent Manager at Safaricom

The ability to have the solution work across different devices, desktop or mobile, widens our reach and gives a consistent experience for everyone.

Tanya Braganza, Technology Talent Manager at Safaricom

Investment Provides Immediate Cost Savings and DEI Benefits

In just six months, Safaricom was able to increase their graduate intake by 250% while reducing the time commitment of key stakeholders from days to hours as they did not need to be present for every interview.

Tanya also highlights the significant cost savings that Safaricom made, “With the efficiencies we gained using SHL’s solutions, our total hiring costs were reduced by over 60%.”

In addition, the intake exceeded Safaricom’s DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) and PWD (Persons with Disabilities) targets, with a 50/50 female-to-male ratio of candidates and four PWD graduate hires who previously may have slipped through the process.

Safaricom noticed some additional benefits, as Tanya explains, “When looking at the video applications, we could see some people completing assessments sitting under a streetlamp on their mobile phone,” says Tanya, “Previously these candidates couldn’t apply so you could see how potentially life-changing an opportunity like this was for them.”

Key Results

250% increase in graduate intake

60% reduction in total hiring costs

Data Reuse Enables Continuous Growth

The candidate feedback since adopting the new solution has been very positive for Tanya’s team, she says, “We’ve had a 100% offer to acceptance rate showing candidates enjoyed the process and felt a sense of belonging and achievement. Even for those who aren’t successful, we provide prompt feedback that puts them in a stronger position for their next opportunity.”

Internal feedback has also been positive, with team leaders seeing how quickly new employees are ready to start on projects. Reusing candidate data to drive continuous importance was key to this.

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The insights SHL provides us in terms of areas for development, learning styles, and skills enable us to really make the program relevant and engaging.

Tanya Braganza, Technology Talent Manager at Safaricom

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