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THE EMPLOYABILITY OF BUSINESS SCHOOLS’ GRADUATES IN THE LABOUR MARKET IN TANZANIA: AN EXPLORATORY STUDY


Esther R. Mbise

College of Business Education, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania


ABSTRACT

Higher learning institutions have been blamed for producing graduates unfit to the labor market. However, many factors determine the performance of business schools’ graduates in the labor market. Institutional (where training was undertaken), organizational (where graduate is working), and individual or personal factors. All these factors contribute to the performance of graduates at places of work or the labor market. The purpose of this paper is to present business schools ex-graduates’ performance in terms of five employability dimensions. The ex-graduates performance assessment in five dimensions was compared to employers’ assessment. The correlation between ex-graduates employability dimensions and immediate supervisors’ performance assessment was established. The results obtained in this study indicating the ex-graduates’ gap allows training institutions in Tanzania improve their curricula to bridge mismatch between the TVET training and the labor market. Second, the feedback from the study helps the employers improve their working environment. Third, recognition of skill gaps by ex-graduates enables them to adjust themselves to suit the labor market demands at the same time increase their marketability. A Cross sectional survey design was adopted. The data for the study was obtained using a back translated instrument to ex-graduates and their immediate supervisors.  Forty eight ex-graduates working in financial institutions, ICT firms, and Government ministries volunteered to participate in the study. The respondents consisted of 54 %( 26) male and 46% (22) females. A paper and pencil instrument sought responses from the participants. Responses were measured on a Likert scale anchored between 1 and 6. Twenty eight immediate supervisors filled in the instrument. The employability of ex-graduates’ and immediate supervisors’ performance Likert scale rating at places of work is reported. Ex-graduates were doing well in professional expertise but not very well at balancing work and other activities.  Ex-graduates own assessment rating was significantly higher compared to that of immediate supervisors. A positive correlation between immediate supervisors’ performance assessment and ex-graduates employability dimensions was established. The work performance of business schools’ ex-graduates in Tanzania is determined by factors other than individual factors. The sample size of respondents in the study is small for generalization. This suggests a need for another study involving a large sample of the population.


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