Nesma & Partners owns a diversified portfolio of interests covering the construction, manufacturing, engineering and finance sectors, among others. We hire some 4,000 recruits each year, with the majority (around 75%), of whom are expatriates. Despite this, we have dedicated nationalisation programmes, including employing and training Saudis through our Nesma Training Center.
As an accredited body, we provide one-year diplomas and specialised technical courses. We also sponsor fast-track employees for higher education and postgraduate programmes, as well as providing on-the-job inductions and development plans for new starters.
While we value the vocational skills our training academy provides to new employees, I believe Saudi Arabia as a whole is yet to give the necessary importance to vocational skills training in workforce development. This is because local outcomes are often weak, with vocational training perceived as an add on, or extra cost, by employers, rather than a necessary part of skills development.