How we help our clients navigate natural disasters, political instability, and national emergencies in Africa

Natural disasters in Africa

Cyclones, draughts, floods, epidemics, power cuts, fuel outages, political unrest – all these setbacks and more are part of the experience of doing business in Africa.

Unfortunately, these emergencies cannot be treated as problems that will be thought of when the time comes. Because crises like those pose operational, strategic, financial as well as regulatory risks – and you can never know how long they will last, and how long your business will remain stranded as a result.

These issues will happen, and you will have to deal with them.

Here at Africa HR Solutions, we have had extensive experience with these kinds of disruptions and have faced all manners of trouble related to them for over a decade now. Here is how we have weathered all these uncertainties for our clients over the years:

Political unrest in Niger (2023)

In late July, a coup happened in Niger, with the President and his family being detained by an army General. Since then, the situation has unraveled, prompting intervention from the French government, and causing the USA to eventually suspend most of its assistance to the Nigerien government.

Before any resolution could be found in this conflict, bank accounts in Niger were frozen. This effectively halted business transactions and left companies at a loss as to what to do to safeguard their interests and protect their employees.

So, in a situation such as this one, how can Africa HR Solutions intervene? We cannot “unfreeze” bank accounts, nor can we argue for conflict resolution.

What we did do, however, was to always be alert, informed, and present on the ground.

We are always aware of the latest news in the countries we serve because we constantly monitor recent developments, whether it is about a natural catastrophe or political changes.

As such, we noticed that unrest was boiling in Niger – and might soon spill over.

In those cases, it is experience and knowledge of the country that allow us to distinguish an actual threat, a “maybe” from anything else. In any case, we advise caution and prevention to our clients.

So we did not wait for tragedy to strike before acting. Rather, we were prepared and experienced. So we advised our clients well before they could ask themselves: “What should we do?”.

We made suggestions to our clients in Niger and helped them determine:

  1. How they could proceed with their payroll
  2. Which laws and regulations apply to them in emergency situations
  3. How they could support their employees during this time

 

The result? Uninterrupted service to our clients and their employees and making good on our promise to support them come what may.

In this way, our clients were able to sidestep the issue of frozen bank accounts entirely, and they remained 100% compliant all throughout.

Morocco earthquake (2023)

Some events can be anticipated, but what can we do during unpredictable tragedies?

On the 9th of September 2023, an earthquake of magnitude 6.8 struck Marrakesh, causing over 2,900 deaths in the region and leaving thousands more injured.

In the ensuing panic, it is hard for employees and employers alike to think clearly. This time, evidently, we were not aware that a natural disaster would happen. All the same, our teams are always prepared to face emergency situations. This means that when the earthquake happened, we were able to rapidly ensure that employees who had medical insurance coverage, for instance, were able to access the necessary resources.

We were also in constant contact with all our clients and gave them suggestions as to what they could do to maintain activities, and to support their employees. Meanwhile, we handled all their HR functions as per the Africa HR Solutions’ promise.

Following our lead, one client offered an extra allowance to their employees, a move which we swiftly enabled through our payroll service.

Loadshedding in South Africa (ongoing)

Businesses that are beginning their expansion to South Africa may not always be aware of its loadshedding issues – a practice of planned blackouts during which the population remains without electricity for six to twelve hours every day.

Now a day-to-day occurrence as opposed to an emergency, EOR and PEO providers like Africa HR Solutions must still be adequately prepared to deal with loadshedding and its repercussions on clients. This includes ensuring that payroll is processed on time, regardless of loadshedding issues, ensuring that employees are properly onboarded… everything to make sure that business can go on as usual, in spite of the circumstances.

COVID-19 pandemic (2019-2022)

During the pandemic, Africa HR Solutions played a key role in enabling payroll payments and facilitating access to medical insurance to those who were covered by it.

We also assisted our clients as they navigated the rocky terrain of new COVID-19 regulations that were popping up all across the 50+ African countries we serve. Our dedication to 100% compliance made it so that we were able to guide our clients through these difficult legal obligations in an already unprecedented time.

Rely on Africa HR Solutions

It is in times of trouble that you know who you can truly count on. Africa HR Solutions has proved, through and through, that we keep our promises of being there for our clients no matter what the situation. Allow yourself the peace of mind you need for your business to grow in Africa: let your business confidently rely on our trusted PEO, EOR, and payroll services.

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GRANT GERAGHTY - Africa HR Team

GRANT GERAGHTY

HEAD OF CLIENT RELATIONSHIP

Grant Geraghty is the longest-serving member of the Africa HR team. This resident subject matter expert and client champion is responsible for gaining a deep understanding of our clients’ unique HR needs in Africa and providing tailored solutions that align with their business objectives. Grant collaborates closely with our clients to ensure that their requirements are properly implemented, providing ongoing support and guidance throughout the process.

Grant brings a wealth of experience to his role, having served as Africa HR’s longest-serving employee. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree, with a major in Economics and Business Finance, from the University of Natal in South Africa. Additionally, he has completed a certification program in Payroll and Tax Administration from the University of Cape Town, further enhancing his expertise in HR operations and compliance.

His commitment to delivering exceptional service and his extensive knowledge of HR in Africa make him an invaluable member of the Africa HR team.

KEVINA TAKOORDYAL Africa HR Team

KEVINA TAKOORDYAL

HEAD OF OPERATIONS

Kevina Takoordyal has a BA Hons Business Management from the University of Glamorgan, UK, with MBA in leadership and Innovation, MBA General, PMP Certified, and Agile Scrum Master. She currently works as the Head of Operations at Africa HR Solutions Ltd with more than 20 years of proven leadership capabilities in Operations, Business Development, People Management, Process Optimization, and Project Management in the Financial Services, BPO, Banking Industry, and Heath Care Industry. In Senior leadership roles with an international footprint across Europe working and extensive Pan- African experience from a compliance, finance, and operations angle, Kevina comes across with a panoply of cross-functional skills. Kevina also serves on a few Boards, Non-Independent Executive at MioD and for NGOs on a voluntary basis, a coach and mentor to aspiring female leaders across Africa and Mauritius.

Kevina is a firm believer in Servant Leadership with a strong focus and commitment to uplifting others, with the ability to deliver through a highly engaged – diverse team, and works towards consistently synergistic value creation. While being a focused and adaptive thinker and Kevina is actively participating in panel discussions on Innovation, CX, Digital transformation.

Kevina serves as Project Assessor for the National Youth upskilling program. She has been recognized as Global Talent in a few companies, Ceridian, and International SOS Ltd whereby she has been awarded a few scholarships and had the opportunity to be mentored by Senior Vice President in the US. Award Winner in various fields and at a national level and recognized including Super Achiever Leader Award in Africa in 2016, Awarded Africa Women Leader 2018.

VILOSHNA PACKIRY POULLE​

VILOSHNA PACKIRY POULLE

Head of Finance & Business Support

Viloshna is an experienced finance professional with 18 years of expertise in strategic financial planning, financial analysis, cash flow management, systems and controls implementation, financial reporting, and continuous process improvements. She currently serves as Head of Finance & Business Support, where she has successfully automated and leveraged the financial reporting system capabilities to ensure efficient company operations.

Viloshna’s background includes senior roles in a multinational pharmaceutical company and a large listed Mauritian conglomerate. Her meticulous attention to detail and strategic thinking have streamlined financial processes, making her a valuable addition to any finance team. Viloshna is a qualified finance professional with an FCCA qualification and an MBA, bringing valuable expertise to any organization.

In her current role, Viloshna leads the company’s Treasury and Payments function, including the fulfillment of the company’s cross-border payments into Africa. With her strong educational background and extensive experience, Viloshna consistently demonstrates her ability to optimize financial operations, minimize risks, and improve profitability. Her expertise in financial reporting and process improvements make her a valuable asset to any organization.

MARK DU PREEZ​

MARK DU PREEZ

Head of Legal & Compliance

A qualified lawyer who joined Africa HR Solutions in July 2020, Mark Du Preez has experience working in private practice for a reputable law firm in South Africa. He also played commercially focused roles at a leading private bank, wealth management company, and outsourcing firm in South Africa and Mauritius.

Mark has played a pivotal role in Africa HR Solution’s risk mitigation strategy, which positively impacted P&L performance over the years.

He currently leads the Partnerships function of the company including relationships and oversight with in-country partners (ICPs) across Africa.

Alex Daruty - Africa HR Team

ALEX DARUTY

Head of Commercial

Alex has more than 15 years of experience in the global, strategic development of both enterprise and consumer brands in categories including technology, transport, enterprise software, entertainment, and travel.

With experience in roles on both agency and corporate side, he has worked across international brands and has led the development and execution of multi-discipline campaigns across EMEA, NORAM and Asia Pacific.

His focus is on driving meaningful business impact through brand differentiation and building high-functioning, digitally oriented, and analytically driven capabilities. He is motivated by working with, and developing dynamic people, teams, and organizations.

He leads, manages, develops and mentors the Key Account Management department, including line management responsibility for the team of Key Account Managers and Key Account Administrator who represent the Company as the primary communication link between all relevant stakeholders, including clients, third party in-country partners and internal functions.

Originally from Mauritius, he holds bachelor’s degrees in International Business, Finance and Management from the University of Nevada, Reno.