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Video series educates essential FMCG workers on Covid-19 safety

The right to have access to food is enshrined in the South African Constitution, which is why companies operating in the food manufacturing, retail and supply chain must remain focused on protecting their employees - the people who make it possible to feed South Africans.
Video series educates essential FMCG workers on Covid-19 safety

To help ensure South Africa's ongoing food security and protect the health of workers, the Health and Welfare Sector Education Training Authority (HWSETA) embarked on an educational campaign to ensure that essential workers are aware of the virus and understand how to maintain their own health and prevent its spread. As part of this campaign, the SETA awarded discretionary grants to entities that may be able to help disseminate this vital message. Talent acquisition firm Talent Brand is a recipient of one of these discretionary grants.

The organisation decided to harness its extensive knowledge of the FMCG sector, and for which Talent Brand MD Jo Watt has a particular passion, to educate essential workers in this space. “We have worked with most of South Africa’s major FMCG companies, and therefore have an insider’s view of the industry’s challenges and priorities,” says Watt.

Working with Mobitainment and TTRO, Talent Brand applied these insights to a series of animated videos, crafted to provide essential workers in manufacturing, retail and supply chain industries with information about how to identify Covid-19 symptoms, and how to protect themselves and family members from the spread.

Factual info in multiple languages

The initiative forms part of a comprehensive plan developed by the HWSETA to assist with Covid-19 efforts.

“To date, we have invested over R90m into a variety of projects. Making the correct information accessible was an integral part of the plan and we are very proud of this project and of the quality of the videos. There has been a lack of information available in many languages and we hope that these videos will assist greatly in arming South Africans with the precautionary measures they need to take to stay safe,” says Elaine Brass, CEO at HWSETA.

The animated videos – each under three minutes long – are available in English, Afrikaans, Zulu and Setswana, and aim to dispel myths about the spread of the virus and address critical issues such as physical distancing, when to self-isolate, and how and when to get tested. Watt reports that the content for the videos was created in consultation with key players in the food manufacturing industry, including the likes of Tiger Brands, National Brands, CCBSA and Distell, to ensure that the messaging is on target.

The videos are available in both static and interactive format. The former enables employers to broadcast the videos at plants, canteens and in training rooms.

Incentives delivered through interactive video

Mobile interactive videos have also been developed which can be watched on employees’ phones. They can SMS a short code to get the link and simply click on the web when they are ready to watch. The SMS short code and interactive mobile video can then be viewed without incurring data costs.

These videos contain questions and answers and other mechanisms to test users’ understanding of the content. As an incentive to watch and share the content, users who finish watching can enter into a daily draw to earn a share of R3,000 worth of airtime.

To produce the videos, Talent Brand partnered with TTRO and Mobitainment. Candice Goodman, managing director of Mobitainment, notes that online videos are the most effective channel for transmitting information. According to a February 2020 report by We Are Social, 98% of all South Africans watch online videos. “This case study proves that technology is a great enabler and can be harnessed for the greater societal good," says Goodman.

She explains that the use of interactive video makes it possible to gauge viewers’ knowledge, rewarding them once they display a thorough understanding of the subject.

“Meanwhile, because the videos can be shared on WhatsApp, the most popular app in South Africa, we can maximise the reach of this engaging, educational and rewarding content. But perhaps most importantly, this is an example of solving local problems with local solutions. We’ve addressed issues such as the cost of data by ensuring that the data used to watch the videos is reverse billed, so that the essential worker doesn’t incur any costs.”

Play your part to help flatten the curve of Covid-19: SMS HERO or your company’s name to 30864 at no charge to receive the link on your phone or click to watch the videos (at no charge for mobile data) and stand a chance to earn your share of R3,000 in daily airtime.

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