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The Top 10 Kenyan employers to work for.

Which Kenyan companies would you give all to work for? Well, you don’t have to travel abroad to find state of the art employers, as some employers in Kenya are really the place to be for workers. They have strived to be the very best, and even expatriate workers have applied to work for them. Before I unveil my list, here is a list of things to look for as you evaluate a prospective employer

- Salary.
Is the salary enough for you to afford a reasonable standard of living?

- Skills acquisition.
Does the company give you opportunities to advance your skills? Does it give you an opportunity to build your career, and have a meaningful impact on people’s lives?

-Promotion and Opportunities for growth.
How often are people promoted in the company? Does the company have an elaborate promotion scheme
for talented employees?

-Bonuses and share ownership
Does the company give generous bonuses when times are good? Does it give a few shares to those who give in the most effort and talent?

-Work load, leave and vacation times.
Even if a company offers you the highest salary in the world, but still overworks you and doesn’t give you any time for relaxation or leave, you will soon burnout, and your social life may be cut off.

In her book, Lean In: Women, Work, and the will to Lead, Facebook Chief Operating Officer- Sheryl Sandberg, notes that one of the reasons why many women have not advanced in the workplace is that many companies are unable to provide an environment that allows women to balance between work and family.

So, without much ado, here are the ten companies I think deserve to be on your top ten list of prospective employers.

1. KPMG.
The beauty of starting a career at KPMG is that it allows you to branch out. You will be in preparation for a middle or senior management role after serving a stint at KPMG. Since it is primarily an auditing and accountancy firm, it tends to favor those with a business, quantitative, engineering, IT, and mathematical background.

2. PWC- Pricewaterhousecoopetrs.
PWC also belongs to Kenya’s- and the world’s big four accountancy firms. It offers the same career progression path as KPMG, although the workload is much more (again speculative), than at KPMG.

3. Bamburi cement.
Bamburi Company is part of the larger Lafarge group, a company that spans many geographical regions. The company has one of the highest starting salaries, and is known to offer a generous stipend to those on attachments and internships. It has been known to encourage more women to apply for its vacant job positions.  

4. KenGen.
As with many energy companies, KenGen offers a very high starting salary, and in the past few years, it has been encouraging more women to apply for positions in the company. One disadvantage is that some positions may be in remote locations, but that is offset by generous travel and hardship allowances, and ample leave times.

5. Kenya Power.
Kenya Power, just like KenGen, also deals with energy, the only difference being that it deals with distribution of energy.

6. Geothermal Development Company- GDC.
This is a new company that was spinned off KenGen, and it deals with extraction of geothermal energy, especially from parts of the Rift Valley. Being a government parastatal, the work hours are also quite flexible. It has been known to offer very high starting salaries.

7. UNEP/ UN agencies.
Even though there are rumours that UNEP may be moved from Kenya, it is still one of the highest paying employers, especially for those with a social science degree. However, many people who work in UN and many NGOs usually have a masters or an advanced degree, because competition for the jobs is very stiff.

8. Deloitte and Ernst &Young.
The reason why Deloitte and Ernst &Young are further down the list is that even though they are among the big four accountancy firms, they are relatively unknown compared to KPMG and PWC.

9. Citizen TV.
Citizen TV is still the most watched TV station in the region, and even though it has been raided by K24 for journalists and news anchors, it still retains the largest market share, albeit with a drop in few percentage points. The reason why it appears near the bottom of the list is that even though the news anchors are some of the highest paid in Africa, the salary scales further down the list are not that lucrative.

This is a trend that is reflected in much of the media industry, where top editors, news anchors, and host presenters generally earn much more than the support crew of camera men, writers, and reporters and sometimes even co-presenters. However, the counter argument is that some presenters actually bring much more income and advertisers to the media companies, and therefore deserve the six or seven figure salaries they get.

10. Strathmore University.
The list wouldn’t be complete without a mention of a university or an educational institution. With the famed business programmes at Strathmore, it is likely that its lecturers and staff make much more than the industry average. The leave times and time allocated for research is also a likely advantage for many that work in this institution.

Do you agree with this list? Which employers do you feel  have been  excluded in this list?

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