B’Yeah: Turning Job Seekers into Job Creators

LightCastle Analytics Wing
January 19, 2020
B’Yeah: Turning Job Seekers into Job Creators

The Opportunity

Bangladesh, home to 160.9 million people is growing at a rate of 7.9%. Almost 65% of the country’s population is aged between 15-64 years.2 Youth labor force (aged 15-29 years) is the largest proportion of the country’s total labor force which is 31.6%. Thus, this is the right time for Bangladesh to invest in the human capital of its youth population if the country wants to reap the benefits of this demographic dividend. The youth of the country presents a great opportunity to transform the future. Though only 4.2% of people in Bangladesh are unemployed, youth unemployment as a percentage of total youth is as high as 10.6%. Additionally, the share of youth not in education, employment, or training (NEET) as a percentage of the youth population is 29.8%.

In order to address such macroeconomic challenges, Bangladesh Youth Enterprise Advice & Helpcentre (B’Yeah) has been working on the economic and social empowerment of youth through entrepreneurship since 2007. In 2015, “Turning Job Seekers into Job Creators” a four-year project was granted to B’Yeah by Comic Relief to support the underserved youths in a systematic manner with pioneering business ideas through a market-based holistic support package, including capacity development, mentoring, and access to finance. As the project was efficaciously completed by B’Yeah in October 2019, LightCastle Partners Limited was hired to conduct an end-line study to assess the impact of the project in supporting young entrepreneurs and creating a greater impact on the economy.

Our Approach

LightCastle Partners interviewed 84 young entrepreneurs from a database of 300 entrepreneurs who were the primary beneficiaries of the project, 5+ mentors who supported the entrepreneurs with different aspects of business, 1 financial institution who assisted B’Yeah, and the entrepreneurs throughout, and a non-governmental organization, UCEP.

LightCastle Partner’s Enumerator Collecting Entrepreneur’s Data

The entrepreneurs were interviewed to assess the impact of the B’Yeah in enhancing the entrepreneurs’ entrepreneurial competencies, enhancing the lives of disadvantaged young people, creating jobs for the underserved youths, etc. The study showed that the success rate of the project was approximately 92%. The top categories of businesses that the entrepreneurs are involved in are Garments Clothing (19%), Handicrafts (14%), and Hardware/Electronics (12%). Bakery/Catering (11%) and IT Services (5%). From the study, it was inferred that 91% of the entrepreneurs were “Very Satisfied” or “Satisfied” with the training provided by B’Yeah. The services provided by B’Yeah were training on entrepreneurship development, business management, marketing, communication, business plan, business counseling, etc. Entrepreneurs mentioned IT skills, Marketing, and Sales strategies as their major areas of development.

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From the study, it was found that the entrepreneurs were satisfied with their business performances. 12% of the respondents that were surveyed achieved growth in revenue in one year. 77 of the entrepreneurs who identified themselves as entrepreneurs created 63 news (each entrepreneur created .81 jobs).

With rigorous analyses of entrepreneurs’ data and qualitative insights from mentors, and financial institutions, LightCastle Partners created a clear image of the impact of the project on the lives of the underserved entrepreneurs and unemployment.

The results of the data analyses and qualitative interviews indicated that participants of B’Yeah have the potential to create jobs and assist in mitigating youth unemployment rates in Bangladesh. The benefits of the program are not limited to job creation only-the program provides a platform for current and prospective entrepreneurs to collaborate and solve problems and boost the ecosystem for entrepreneurship. To foster a nurturing environment for entrepreneurs specialized recommendations were provided too. Establishing a common forum for entrepreneurs, supporting entrepreneurs with paperwork, raising awareness about the importance of market research, building easy access to finance, digitizing the learning process, and building a mentor-mentee pipeline are some of the scalable and sustainable recommendations that were provided by LightCastle Partners.

The Future

The results of the end-line study were presented in detail by LightCastle Partners on November 27 at a Project Learning and Sharing event organized by B’Yeah.

We expect more NGOs to come forward in order to address youth unemployment and create a sustainable solution. More successful projects like these will help develop an inspiring and informative ecosystem for the youth of Bangladesh. An informative data platform with updated sector-specific information will encourage more youth to start a business on their own and create a great impact on the economy.

WRITTEN BY: LightCastle Analytics Wing

At LightCastle, we take a data-driven approach to create opportunities for growth and impact. We consult and collaborate with development partners, the public sector, and private organizations to promote inclusive economic growth that positively changes the lives of people at scale. Being a data-driven and transparent organization, we believe in democratizing knowledge and information among the stakeholders of the economy to drive inclusive growth.

For further clarifications, contact here: [email protected]

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