The demand for and use of statistical information for evidence-based policy and decision making has transcended the margins of administrative boundaries to cover activities and behaviour.
The Uganda Bureau of Statistics (UBOS) has been conducting household surveys every year since the late 1980s. Through the 2016/17 Manpower Survey Uganda (MAPU), Uganda has added to the existing wealth of data in addition to the first Manpower Survey conducted in 1988.
The 2016/17 MAPU covered all the Establishments in the districts of Uganda. Field data collection was spread over a 12-month period from January 2016 to June 2017.
The Survey provides data on employers and employees in the Formal Sector, the Informal Sector, and Educational Institutions respectively.
Supply of Human Resources
According to the UBOS survey, Vocational and Technical Colleges (VTCs) constituted the majority (45%) followed by Health Colleges (16%) and Colleges of Commerce and Business Studies (15%). Universities constituted 8 per cent of all the training Institutions visited.
The survey also found that close to seven in every ten training Institutions (68%) was privately owned while 32 per cent were publicly owned.
“Overall three quarters (75%) of the training Institutions were registered with Ministry of Education and Sports (MoES), 15 per cent with the National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) while 2 per cent were not registered at the time of the survey. Nearly all the training Institutions catered for both male and female students,” the survey indicates.
“Across the staffing categories, there were more males than females. However, we observed among teaching staff in the Tourism and Wildlife Colleges; administration staff in Health Colleges and Media and Communication Colleges; as well as among support staff in Tourism and Wildlife Colleges, and Health Colleges,” noted Imelda Musana, the acting Executive Director of the Uganda Bureau of Statistics.
The survey says Government-owned Educational Training Institutions (ETIs) employed a higher number of people compared to the Private owned Institutions especially in Universities and Affiliated Colleges.
Ugandans comprised over 90 percent of all staff regardless of the staffing category and group of training Institution.
Overall, the most common reason for staff turnover among employees was low pay followed by absconding from duty regardless of the sex of the employees.
The survey says the minimum required education qualification generally increased with the level of occupation.
“For instance, 41 per cent of managerial jobs in training Institutions required a Bachelor’s Degree, 21 per cent required a Master’s Degree while 5 per cent required a PhD as the minimum level of education.
“At least three-quarters of the jobs that fell vacant were advertised with exception of the jobs in the service and sales worker category (29%).
“Overall, in 2015, about 269,380 students were enrolled in the training Institutions for different programs. The majority of the enrolled students were pursuing a Degree program, followed by Certificate and Diploma while students pursuing Doctorates of Philosophy were the least in the category of education levels.”
Overall seven per cent of training Institutions offered long-distance Courses while 21 per cent offered part-time studies. Private Universities charged higher, tuition fees for undergraduates compared to Public Universities, while Public Universities charged higher tuition fees for Master’s Degree programs compared to Private Universities.
The survey also discovered that the education costs increased with increasing level of education. “Courses related to Engineering, Health and Agricultural fields were more expensive compared to Courses in Arts and humanity fields.
“Amongst male students, failure to afford tuition fees (78%) followed by a high local demand for labour (5%) were the major reasons for dropping out reported by training Institutions. Failure to afford tuition fees among male students was more prevalent in Private-owned training Institutions (84%) compared to those in Public (65%).
“Overall, about 130,790 students graduated in 2015 in different training Institutions across the country. The majority of the graduates were from the Universities which could be explained by the higher enrolment figures in Universities compared with other training Institutions.
“It is worth noting that the number of graduates from the different Institutions has been increasing across the three years under review.
Specifically, in 2015, about 53,700 students graduated with a Bachelors followed by 48,290 with a Certificate; while only about 490 students attained a Doctorate of Philosophy.
“Close to six in every ten ETIs were Private-owned (57%) reported that they conduct tracer studies compared to only 38 per cent in Public Institutions.
“Furthermore, based on the tracer studies undertaken, overall, 55 per cent of the ETIs reported that their graduates usually took up to six months to get employment while 16 per cent revealed that it took more than 12 months for their students to get employment.
“The key issues that affected capacity utilization in training Institutions were: the lack of training materials (26%) followed by a lack of adequate physical facilities like a building etc. (22%), lack of/ the inadequate number of qualified staff (16%) and financial/budget constraints (14%) among others.
Employers in the Formal Sector
The survey unearthed that seventy-seven per cent of the Establishments were in the Formal Private Sector while 23 per cent were in the Public Sector.
“Overall, 87 per cent of Establishments in the Public Sector was engaged in Education activities while 54 per cent of their counterparts in the Private Sector was in Education followed by Trade and Repairs (12%).
“Eight in every ten (80%) of the Formal Private Sector Establishments were legally registered with the relevant Institution /authority while only 10 per cent of Formal Private Sector Establishments were Affiliated to some International organization.
Largely, 80 per cent of the Formal Establishments in the Private Sector was owned by only Ugandans.
The total number of employees in the Formal Establishments grew from about 700,000 in 2010 to 1,000,000 in 2015.
“A similar trend is observed for employees that left before the end of their contract period from about 13,000 in 2010 to 48,000 reflecting a labour turnover that increased from 2 per cent in 2010 to 5 per cent in 2015.
“In addition, the number of jobs created more than double over the six-year period, from about 23,000 in 2010 to 52,000 in 2015,” the survey found.
It further found that the Education Sector (excluding Tertiary training Institutions) had the highest share of Ugandan employees while the Manufacturing (31%), and Trade and Repairs (35%) Establishments had the larger share of Non-Ugandan employees. The Private Sector accounted for about two thirds across all the years.
“Furthermore, across all the years, the share of Non-Ugandans employees was larger (about 90%) in the Private Sector while the rest were in the Public Sector.
“The Public Sector accounted for about one-third of the Ugandan employees while the Private Sector accounted for about two thirds and the reverse is true with the share of Non-Ugandans employees larger (about 90%) in the Private Sector.
“The employees in the Formal Establishments were predominantly males (56%). Professionals constituted at least half of the Ugandan employees in the Formal Sector while Non-Ugandans employees in Managerial occupations comprised at least two thirds.
“Overall, of the 815,500 existing permanent jobs in 2015, 91 per cent were filled. In the Public Sector, 87 per cent of the permanent positions were filled compared to 94 per cent in the Private Sector.”
A third (33%) of the permanent jobs in the Formal Sector Establishments required a minimum of a Certificate. However, more than half of the available Managerial positions (51%), required a minimum of a Bachelor’s Degree.
An estimated 50,100 permanent positions were vacant countrywide of which two thirds (63%) were due to growth while eight per cent were due to replacement.
Nearly half of the Establishments revealed that the permanent posts remain vacant due to budgetary constraints (48%) followed by the issue of long internal bureaucracy (28%).
BY PAUL TENTENA