BAG (Building a Generation) is a gamified platform founded in 2017 by Yusuf Ntwali to bridge the gap between the academic and professional worlds. How is BAG changing EdTech in Africa?
The journey of BAG started with a simple idea to equip students with the necessary skills and experience they need through internships before graduating. BAG is to disrupt the traditional approach to how individuals, particularly students, experience school and build the next generation of problem solvers, just like the name implies: Building a Generation
History of BAG Innovation
BAG was started in 2017 in Kigali City, Rwanda, by Yusuf Ntwali, Rwandan, and Gabriel Ekman, Swedish. Gabriel was a business consultant who traveled to Rwanda to work, and while in Kigali, he met Yusuf, a citizen and a great entrepreneur, and together they founded BAG.
BAG started as an initiative to train students and prepare them for the work industry, and through a couple of years, it has grown into a platform where students and individuals can take self-directed learning, apply for jobs and internships, and gain profound experience to dive into the job world.
This innovation is not only aimed at providing sufficient experience for students and individuals but also preparing them for companies who are interested in hiring great talents for positions, as most companies in Rwanda are complaining of not being able to find qualified candidates for hire. BAG is there to give you the experience instead of being on training probation for 3months after eventually being hired and not being able to be hired for a full-time role. BAG is preparing you earlier and faster, let’s see How BAG is Changing EdTech in Africa.
Milestones of BAG Innovation
In 2019, BAG raised $150,000 in seed funding round from an unnamed local VC firm to help it grow. This funding later led to one of the biggest successes of BAG as it improved the platform and made it accessible to more people.
After raising a seed fund in 2019, the COVID-19 pandemic took over most of the following year, 2020. This led to increased demand for content and training that could be accessed remotely. With the funding received, BAG created a platform where individuals and recruiters can access data and information without moving around.
This platform became a meeting place for recruiters, students, individuals, and employers. Companies looking to hire great talents are allowed to create accounts with just a fee of $100 per month. They can have access to candidates, their educational background, skills, interests, and many more.
The students, on the other hand, can create an account for free, apply for internships, and also take tasks and experiences related to their field. With this, BAG has been able to reach over 12,000 students, partner with over 170 SMEs in Rwanda, and expand its reach outside of Rwanda.
It is also important to mention that in 2022, BAG, among the other six startups in Rwanda, received $100,000 from Google Startups funding. Also, BAG won the Best Innovation Award in 2019 and participated in the Hanga Pitchfest in 2022.
How Does BAG Work
BAG is a self-directed gamification learning platform. It is easy to get started. But first, let’s talk about how BAG works and how BAG is Changing EdTech in Africa.
As a student, you will be able to create an account for free; within your account, you will be required to set up your profile, and this will count as a task.
Tasks are straightforward points you get when you complete a challenge. The number of points you get decides your profile ratings and determines how an employer will see your BAG profile when he/she visits it.
BAG advises you to perform tasks and challenges to get more points, which decides the profile level and many more. The number of points you have shows that you have completed lots of tasks or experiences and have what it takes to get into an internship and get more experience
The features on BAG are many, but we’ll talk about the most important ones;
Tasks are simple challenges or assignments that you complete to get points. The tasks are in quiz form, in three levels: easy, medium, and hard. Each level has an increase in points awarded after completion.
You start taking tasks as soon as you create your profile; adding the necessary details to your profile, like your educational background, previous work experience, and more, is also a task, and you will be awarded as soon as you complete them.
Tasks are easy and fast to complete; the maximum time you will spend completing one is just 10 minutes. Each one you take is recommended to you by your skills, and it is also advisable to take tasks outside your skillset.
These are just like tasks, but experiences give you a deeper dive into whatever skill you are interested in. Experiences give you training on a craft, provide external resources for your learning, and let you take an assessment test that will be graded, and your points will be awarded after grading.
Experiences are much more complex and time-consuming than Tasks, and they work towards your learning and re-learning. Just like tasks, experiences have different difficulty levels, and each one is harder than the last.
Every experience you’ve taken and the points you’ve been awarded will reflect on your resume and be visible to recruiters and employers.
Your resume contains every detail about you relating to work, but BAG adds an innovative approach to how it is crafted. Unlike your traditional resume, which has only your personal information, education, and employment background, the summary you get from BAG includes these details and more.
You can copy a public link to your resume or download it; either way, an employer will be able to see the tasks, experiences, and points you have been able to get through your days as a BAG user.
The name of the tasks and experience, the points, your interests, contact details, education, previous work experience, languages, and more. This proves to the employer your consistency and your quality of getting hired.
Jobs and Internships
Apart from the training on the BAG platform, you can also apply for jobs recommended for you and tailored to your skills.
Another innovative approach BAG takes is the job application process needs to follow the traditional methods of answering a few questions, submitting a CV by email, and preparing for an interview. Relatively every company on BAG registered with them to find high-quality talents, and they use a gamified application process.
Every job application has a task and a pass point, and you have to submit your task before you can finish the job application. Afterward, your task will be graded by the employer, and you will proceed to the next application stage if you meet the pass point for it.
The employer can also view your profile, see your details and how often you complete tasks, and check the total number of points you currently hold; most of these will determine how qualified you are for the role or internship.
How to Start Using BAG
Getting started with BAG is pretty straightforward;
- Open your browser, preferably Google Chrome or Brave Browser
- Visit bag.rw
- If you are an individual or student, click on the “Become a Talent” button
- On the next page, you will be prompted to log in, but click on the “Register” button at the bottom of the page to create an account
- Select “Talent” to store your details as someone looking to get employed
- Click on “Continue.”
- Here, you can choose your signup options; signing up with a Google Account is the best option.
- On the next page, you will be prompted to fill in your details. You can click on the next button after filling in all the entries.
- The next page is to select your interests, and you can choose the skills you are interested in and then click on “Submit.”
- Now, you have successfully created an account and can get started with BAG and its features.
Note that BAG has an automated onboarding process that helps you get familiar with the platform and the urgent tasks you need to complete. With this, it is pretty straight forward to know How BAG is Changing EdTech in Africa.
BAG solves the most significant problem fresh graduates face: needing prior experience to get started in the job world. With BAG you can gain experience, learn, re-learn, and prepare for the job world.