The Ultimate Guide to Hiring Great Employees in Tanzania

  | 6 min read

One of the biggest challenges that hinder business growth in Tanzania is the lack of adequately skilled and self-motivated human capital. Simply put, companies struggle with finding good employees.

You see, while Tanzania’s education system is good at instilling a lot of information in students, especially in Mathematics and Science subjects. It struggles in fostering critical thinking, analytical skills and innovation – qualities that are highly sought after in the current job market.

Although your business may not be able to change the Tanzanian education system, there are a number of steps you can take during the hiring process to increase your chances of finding great employees. Here are 8 steps that you can take that will guarantee you a better selection of employees:

1. Create the ideal candidate

Before you write a job description, take some time to brainstorm your ideal candidate. In addition to the required skill set to perform the role, what other qualities and skills are important to the position and for the company? What type of personality are you looking for?

For instance, does the position need an employee who is self-motivated, always coming up with new ideas to grow your business and willing to put in the work and give the team direction?  Or, are you looking for a hard worker, who can easily take direction and pay attention to details?

Some other important questions to think about, include:

  • Does this ideal candidate have the desire to get promoted and take on more responsibility?

If the position is one with upward mobility, then having candidates who want that and are willing to put in the work is important. On the other hand, if the position is pretty stagnant, then you know that your ideal candidate shouldn’t be someone looking for opportunities to grow in the up coming future as at some point they will get dissatisfied.

  • What type of personality should your ideal candidate have?

Feeling comfortable in the workplace contributes greatly to employee satisfaction, so it’s important to understand your workplace culture and the types of personalities that will thrive there.

Also, it’s important to find a personality that is compatible with the position. For instance, a sales position shouldn’t go to someone who is shy around people or too aggressive.

2. Write a Great Job Description

Once you understand what type of candidate you are looking for, you are ready to write your job description.

Most job descriptions simply state the skills, educational background and the number of years of work experience needed. This approach leaves out potentially great employees who may not have the degree or specific work experience (industry, job role) that you are looking for.

For instance, someone who is a self-taught graphic designer may not have a degree, but can demonstrate incredible initiative and has a lot of experience. In a world that is constantly changing because of technology, Tanzanian employers need to realize that a degree does not necessarily mean that an individual is perfect for the job position.

Moreover, this is just a poor advertising method, as highly competent workers usually apply for jobs they can get and don’t waste their time on jobs they think they aren’t qualified for. Which is why an employer should be more specific and describe the qualities s/he is looking for.

Therefore, when writing your job description, you should be specific but also flexible. A way to accomplish this can be by saying something like, “Experience with _____ is preferred but not necessary if you can prove that _______” This will give potential candidates a clearer idea of what to expect from the role, and thus attract those who are looking for what you have to offer.

3. Test for skills

In Tanzania, employers receive over 100 job applications for a single position! This makes it incredibly difficult to spot the potentially great employees.

An effective solution to this problem is to test all candidates in key skills, and then look at the resumes and cover letters of only the employees that perform well on the test.

A great assessment tool that highlights great candidates from the masses is the AMCAT employability test. It tests for:

  • Proficiency English and communication skills
  • Logical skills
  • Analytical thinking abilities
  • Job specific skills. So for instance, if you are recruiting for a digital strategist, there is a test for that. If you want to test for upper management skills, there is a test for that.

Learn more about the AMCAT here.

4. Advertise in multiple channels

In addition to advertising on your company website and social media pages, utilize:

ZoomTanzania’s recruitment agency offers a comprehensive 360° solution that will find you the best talent for the job! Contact: to get started.

5. Do background checks

Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for job candidates to lie, exaggerate or forge information in their applications. This is especially prevalent in Tanzania where most employers do not conduct thorough background checks.

So, before inviting candidates to interview, do some fact-checking. This should include:

  • Criminal history
  • Social media accounts
  • Call former employers
  • Contact references they provided
  • Google search their name

6. Ask the right common questions

Check out these common job interview questions to figure out what type of questions to ask.

7. Let other employees interview

It is highly likely that there will be a team of people who will be working with the new employee – so include them in the interview process.

They may have specific questions that relate to the potential employees work style and personality that you may not have thought of. Moreover, they will be able to sense if the person is ‘a good fit’ for the team. It’s important to ensure that your new hire will not only do their job, but also fit well with the company culture.

8. Show them you care

When you finally decide on the candidate you want, it’s your job to convince them to take the job. So make sure you:

  • Pay them fairly (according to their skills, work experience, and job responsibilities)
  • Take care of their basic needs (health insurance, social security, proper leave and other employee benefits)
  • Give them additional perks (training opportunities, bonuses based on KPIs)

Your team will build your business

There is a Swahili saying that expresses this perfectly. Chombo hakiendi ikiwa kila mtu anapiga makasia yake.”  The English translation of this is that a boat doesn’t go forward if each one is rowing his/her own way. No business, no matter how good the product or service is, can achieve great success without a great team.

So, it’s critical that you hire the best people you can find and afford, to achieve the best results in your business.

Luckily, our very own recruitment agency can help! Contact: for more information.



Iman Lipumba
A digital storyteller, experienced in creating content that improves website visibility on search engines, enhances the user experience, and nurtures brand loyalty. With a background in the social sciences, an expert in researching complex ideas, and communicating them in engaging language to multiple audiences.