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The following excerpt about careers and upward mobility in Africa is based on the book Tomorrow’s Jobs Today, available on Amazon and at Barnes & Noble.

Managing records is a standard function for most businesses, whether they build products or provide services. But most people don’t think of the field as cutting edge because, for centuries, it has been associated with the management of paper records. Today, electronic records have replaced most physical records, yet many of the principles used in records management still apply in the modern workplace.

Millions worldwide are involved in records management, from file clerks and secretaries to software developers and CEOs. This field provides a foundation for many other disciplines covered in this book, from Digital Ethics to Information Governance and eDiscovery. It offers terrific entry-level positions for people just getting started.

One man who knows the importance of this field and professional development is Dr. Ayodeji Oyewole, Chairman of the Board at the Institute of Information Management based in Nigeria. Before leading the institute, he served in senior roles for Swedish IT firms and consulted on cybersecurity projects for the oil and gas industry. Today he serves as the Country’s Chief Data Officer Ambassador for Nigeria on behalf of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He received his BSc in Computer Science from Lagos State University.


Dr. Oyewole’s work developing new practitioners in Africa’s Records Management and Computer Science fields is simply inspiring. His journey to help young men and women who might otherwise not have gainful employment began in 2004 when only a few African organizations implemented data science and information management technology. Poverty and corruption were rampant, and there was a lack of opportunity in the country.

In analyzing Nigeria’s political and socioeconomic challenges, Dr. Oyewole determined that the one meaningful solution he could implement to alleviate suffering was advancing the industry in which he had developed so much expertise—records management. The discipline had gone neglected for decades in Africa. The doctor was convinced that having a society where quality records and information could be easily accessed had to become a priority. At that time, there was a lack of government support for information management, inadequate legislation to address regulations, poorly trained practitioners, and an absence of standards.

His solution—is education. He founded the Institute of Information Management in Africa.

“Most people don’t realize that many parts of Africa, particularly Nigeria, now have sophisticated IT infrastructures despite being considered developing nations,” Dr. Oyewole explained. “I’d like to think we’ve been a part of that progress.”

Indeed, the history of Africa is rich, with much of its potential ready to be unlocked. Technical job opportunities in Nigeria continue to blossom, and there are pools of talent that international corporations are starting to realize are yet to be tapped. Dr. Oyewole says that what we see in Nigeria and many other parts of Africa reflects a belief by young people that it’s becoming possible to pursue success professionally. They resolve to take their careers to the next level and improve their lives.

To learn more about the exciting things happening with careers and technology in Africa, pick up a copy of Tomorrow’s Jobs Today at any Barnes & Noble or Amazon.