It's another Thursday afternoon and time to take a plunge into Abuja's tech ecosystem, this time with Nkechi Oguchi, CEO of Ventures Park, one of Abuja's largest co-working spaces.

In the short time since I relocated to Abuja, she has shown herself to be an accomplished Abuja whisperer.

Today, I approach her with a problem all founders can relate to—hiring skilled talent.

Her work allows her to meet many professionals, from NGO researchers to developers who work from Ventures Park, so I wanted a few tips on tapping into the talent pool she supports. We sit down to discuss the factors that attract skilled senior talent to companies in the ecosystem.

Some takeaways:

  • Too many local and international companies are chasing the same talent pool, and the issue is felt across the board, as indicated in a Stears Data survey.

  • According to the IFC, technical talent such as software developers and other digitally skilled workers is a crucial indicator of a country's ability to utilise the internet economy and digital trade.

  • A challenge most entrepreneurs building for Africa will face is how to build low-cost products with expensive talent. 

Spoiler: it's tough, especially if you are not a unicorn (or on your way to becoming one).  

During our meeting, she interjects and pulls in a few senior developers—the subject of our conversation. However, the discussion that followed was both illuminating and worrying.

My takeaway?