E-commerce and the digital economy continue to create amazing new opportunities for women in many African countries, as evidenced by the latest IFC report indicating that women own up to 51% of businesses and operate up to 63% of businesses in major economies like Nigeria and Kenya. Clearly, women are key business influencers committed to making great things happen in Africa.
Despite their fast-growing role in the continent’s e-commerce sector, women still face many challenges in Senegal and elsewhere due to existing cultural constraints that confine them to non-pivotal roles in the economy. For example, driving delivery vehicles and handling packages in warehouses is considered a man’s job by many people in Senegal, a country that lags in terms of women’s advancement. This is just one of the challenges facing African women in e-commerce in Senegal.
Success stories of the Women in Jumia Senegal
With these challenges in mind, combined with a clear dedication to expanding women’s participation and ultimate success as leaders in e-commerce, Jumia’s Senegal leadership team has embarked on a mission to mentor and support women employees, customers, and sellers with new programs designed to bring about positive change in the months and years ahead.
An example of Jumia’s commitment to women is evidenced by its comprehensive effort to support female employees in logistics with the goal of encouraging them to succeed at high levels in various company departments.
“I started as a logistic agent and today I am an Inbound manager managing a team of eight people, five of whom are men. I had to persevere and give the best of myself, despite the fact that I am surrounded by men in a job where persistence, energy and courage are essential,” says Adama Gueye, a Jumia Inbound Manager in Senegal. She oversees the arrival of thousands of products to the warehouse in Dakar daily and adds that “Having undergone training in logistics like my male colleagues, I can affirm that our intellectual and professional capabilities do not lie in the fact of being male or female, but in the capacity and will to execute and reach our objectives.”
Jumia also supports qualified women and encourages them to flourish in other departments. Islamia Osseni, another woman star on Jumia’s Senegal team, is a master’s degree holder in audit and management control and a mother of four. She serves as Jumia’s Head of Accounting, leading a team of four people.
Additionally, Jumia’s commercial team is integral to securing buy-in from various sellers regarding price-driven strategies, and we are glad to have women on this team getting sellers to back the availability of competitive offers on our platform. One of the outstanding talents here is Marcelle Siayojie, who is currently the Head of Brands for Jumia Senegal, having previously offered her versatility in other areas such as Acquisition Management, Seller Management and Category Management.
While top-to-bottom representation in the workforce is a common benchmark that various companies pursue, we wanted to transcend this concept. Therefore, Jumia has emphasized cross-functional representation so that women’s input isn’t restricted to a few areas. Consequently, they can contribute in a manner that ultimately attracts more women to sell or shop on our platform.
Head of Human Resources - Jumia Senegal
Khadyiatou Ndiaye is the Human Resources Manager of Jumia Senegal. She has a Master’s Degree in Social Relations and Salary Engineering and a Master’s degree in Labor Law. She studied in France, and subsequently gained professional experiences in sectors such as professional training, recruitment, and trade before returning to Senegal in 2015 to participate in the development of the country.