5 Details Every Entrepreneur Needs Right Now About CAESAR Program

Now, even relatively small companies like Nodeflux–its headcount is still below 50–can score government contracts. Nodeflux analyses images from around 7,000 CCTV cameras in the district, giving the Jakarta Regional Government new perspectives on traffic patterns and other mobility-related insights. It’s now applying a similar solution to help stop travel violations during Covid.

This shift came about with the administration of President Joko Widodo, who ran a furniture business before his political career. Jokowi, first elected in 2014, brought a pro-private sector mindset with him. He won a second term in 2019.

One of the most ambitious PPPs conceptualised as part of Jokowi’s re-election campaign was the Pre-Employment Card or Kartu Prakerja.

The stipend programme started for fresh graduates is now under a lot of stress. Owing to Covid job cuts, not only is it harder for young people to get jobs, but people who had jobs are being laid off.

The government has now not only increased its budget, as mentioned above, but it’s accelerated the launch date from April to March. It’s also rejigged the conditions, so that more people can apply but receive smaller payouts. The original plan targeted 3 million fresh graduates; the post-Covid plan covers 5.6 million people, prioritising those who have just lost their jobs.

The Pre-Employment Card controversy

Original concept: Stipends for 3 million fresh grads. They receive vouchers worth between US$ 190 and US$ 450 for upskilling courses (offline/online mix), as well as a small cash stipend for 4 months

Post-Covid-19: Offer now targets 5.6 million people, prioritising those who just lost jobs. The value of vouchers for classes is reduced to US$ 65 (online only), the cash stipend is bigger

Four major criticisms: Not the right mechanism for Covid-19 relief. The reduced value for courses watered down the quality. Part of the US$ 65 benefits digital platforms that host the online courses. Lack of clarity on which platforms were chosen.

But now the courseware needs to change. As do the conditions of training.

“Initially what they were aiming for is a job-ready curriculum. When it started the price point for the courses was higher, an IDR 3 to 7 million (US$190 to US$450) price point. The course quality and calibre was better,” says Ronald Ishak, the CEO of Hacktiv8, a developer collective which was involved in building the government-facing side of the platform.

Also, due to physical distancing requirements, the entire concept now relied on online learning, Ishak adds.

Originally, Hacktiv8 had planned to offer a coding boot camp, but after the framework was tweaked, this no longer made sense. The course requires physical attendance, and it’s expensive. Ishak and his team prepared some online courses that fit the new requirement of being priced below IDR 1 million (US$65), but he admits they lack the depth of the actual coding class.

Curriculum aside, though, there’s also been a backlash for the government’s choice in partners. It came down to eight platforms which offer educational content, among them Ruangguru.