Why South Africa?
The Global Sourcing Association
The Home of the Global Sourcing Standard

Why South Africa?

The GSA is holding the Global Sourcing Summit and Awards in South Africa this October, but what are the benefits of offshoring there?


The GSA is holding the Global Sourcing Summit and Awards in South Africa, a country that is rapidly emerging into the favoured outsourcing destination of global brands (npower, Direct Line Group, Centrica, Marks & Spencer etc.). In what was a previously untapped destination, South Africa has risen onto the map due to their possession of a qualified and growing English-speaking population. This is particularly pertinent for IT, where South Africa stands out from other countries as a leader in today’s business climate. South Africa’s IT/BPS sector has grown exponentially over the past five years at a rate of ~22 percent – much higher than the global growth rate.

Its value proposition for the industry has been closely linked with traditional English contact centre delivery, mainly due to availability of talent with high levels of empathy with the end-customer. This remains its key strength and has evolved to provide a more multi-/omni-channel experience for customers. Concurrently, the rest of the IT-BP industry in the country has also evolved to provide a wide array of services that have spawned from its traditional strengths.

The destination is already a popular place to offshore. Sourcers know about the high proportion of native English speakers, the favourable time zone and the quality of education system that mirrors the UK but South Africa is established as well as emerging, and other strengths include:

1.       Fresh Talent in Mobile Technology

South Africa’s developing technology landscape has become an ideal breeding ground for up and coming talent, particularly within the mobile applications, support and testing arena. So, for companies looking to outsource a mobile team, South Africa is a great place with skilled tech stars and forward-thinking individuals, ready to take your project by the horns and hit the ground running.

2.       Strong Cultural Ties

In addition to strengthened trade relations despite Brexit and the boost of SA investment in the UK property market, there are many other things linking the two countries. Including a shared language, cultural links, and similar systems of law and finance. So, getting along with your business associates and partners (and understanding interrelated legal matters) should be incredibly easy. There is also a large South African community in the UK and many British expats as well as British descents living in SA – which connects us even further.

3.       Impact Sourcing

Not only will working with outsourcing companies in South Africa bring benefits to your business in a direct way, but your involvement will encourage better employment opportunities in South Africa as whole. This ties in with the legacy GSA plan to leave behind in South Africa through the creation of 1,000 new jobs in the sourcing industry.

Household names that have already set up set up operations within South Africa and have been suitably impressed by the outcomes. Outsourcing Commercial Manager of Npower Joanne Webber is one of those who is delighted to have established operations in SA. She explains “npower has worked with outsource service providers in South Africa for over 3 years, in both our domestic and small business units.” The work commissioned in South Africa is of high importance to npower, thus their initial angst at opening operations there. However, the result was incredibly positive and “thankfully, the decision was a good one and validated my long-held belief that South Africa is a great offshoring destination with expert level suppliers willing to do a good job for a cheaper price.”

The benefits are not just specific to the buyer, they perpetuate out to the South African economy creating a positive multiplier effect. This positive effect has been documented by Brandon Aitken from Webhelp SA. He explains that “outsourcing to South Africa has created incredibly diverse opportunities for tens of thousands of young South Africans affected by very high unemployment, exposing them to millions of customers across the globe.” The increased exposure has created “huge global interest” as buyers begin to witness the “world class experiences” delivered by South Africans. The increased interest as created higher demand for workers in the industry, “significantly improving career prospects for our talented youth.”  

The wonderful customer service combined with the plethora of other benefits has established South Africa as a prominent outsourcing destination. The benefits listed above are some of several reasons of why the GSA awarded South Africa, destination of the year in 2016. The qualities the GSA witnessed in South Africa have only grown more prominent both in quality and global reputation and the GSA are committed to showcase as many of these qualities as possible during our Global Sourcing Summit this forthcoming October. As our speakers share their own individual experiences of the offshoring industry, we hope that you learn as much as possible about outsourcing in South Africa and that your interests are stimulated beyond attending the summit, culminating in the eventual creation of a sourcing operation within South Africa.


The GSA has a limited number of fully funded VIP passes for the Global Sourcing Summit for buyers interested in exploring South Africa as a delivery destination. These include flights and accommodation for the duration of the summit taking place on October 1st and 2nd in Cape Town. Please contact Matt (mattheww@gsa-uk.com) for more information.



The Global Sourcing Association
The Home of the Global Sourcing Standard