Youth, Skills, & the Workforce of the Future


Kolorob Jobs

Enabling Bangladeshi youth to transition out of exploitative jobs into careers in the formal sector

Team Lead

David Sweeting

Basic Information

Our Solution

Kolorob Jobs

Our solution's stage of development:


Our solution:

Kolorob Jobs, is an open-source web and mobile application that enables young people to transition out of hazardous, dangerous and exploitative jobs, onto career pathways in the formal sector. Kolorob Jobs will be housed in the award-winning Kolorob app for low-income communities in slum areas of Dhaka, Bangladesh.

Our pitch:

The problem:

Bangladesh is a lower middle income country with a high rate of economic growth, 6%, over the past decade. Yet 31 million (20%), of the population aged 15-24 and 30% of Bangladesh’s total population lives below the poverty line. The majority of the workforce earns less than $5 per day. A high underemployment rate of 40% shows that many work only a few hours per week in low paid hazardous jobs. Bangladesh sits on the top 30 list of outsourcing destinations; however the growing ICT sector lacks appropriately motivated entry level workers (Accenture 2015). 

Why our solution will solve the problem:


Kolorob’s theory of change is evidenced in user feedback in Western Sydney University’s evaluation of Kolorob over the 18 months to December 2016.

Target Outcomes

Our target outcomes:

Our target group is the youth population (15-24 y.o)  living in urban and peri-urban areas. Our solution addresses the high rate of young people in Bangladesh who are Not in Employment, Education or Training (25%), youth underemployment (40%), and high proportion of the youth workforce who are in informal, unregulated and hazardous economic activities (95%). Kolorob Jobs includes: 

-Verified youth employment and job opportunities 

-Education and training opportunities with accredited institutions (linked to current and future job market needs)

-User profile matching with suitable employers

-Linking candidates to vocational training certification to provide employers confidence in making the right hire.

How we will measure our progress:

  • Outcome: 200 companies registered with 50% multinationals using the app
    Measurement Plan: App and website tracking
  • Outcome: 1000 verified youth employment and job opportunities
    Measurement Plan: App and website tracking
  • Outcome: 35,000 downloads in Bangladesh
    Measurement Plan: Track downloads on google playstore

The populations we will benefit initially:

  • Adolescent
  • Lower middle income economies (between $1006 and $3975 GNI)
  • Short-cycle tertiary
  • Non-binary
  • Urban

The technologies we employ:

  • Consumer-facing software (mobile applications, cloud services)

Why our solution is unique:

Kolorob Jobs simplifies job placement for young people by digitally aggregating and organizing the highly disorganized informal job market.

It’s a unique, innovative model in Bangladesh and Asia, involving a business, non-profit and education provider collaboration, leveraging the power of market-based tech solutions in addressing social problems.  

Kolorob Jobs will provide information about employment and training opportunities for young people; likewise, employers will be able to identify potential employees through Kolorob Jobs user profiles.   

Combining technology, a commercial focus, and community development programs, such as Save the Children’s vocational training, Kolorob Jobs achieves both development and business outcomes.

Why our solution is human-centered:

The need for Kolorob Jobs arose from Kolorob user feedback. Western Sydney University’s evaluation highlights that the process of co-design engaged the community closely, informing new ways of accessing services and produced “lots of UX changes, job portal and feedback…” “The primary beneficiaries of Kolorob are young men and women (18-25). These are educated, technologically adept, capable and keen to explore and experiment with new devices and apps. They are also significant motivators of wider community engagement”. Our design process is human-centered, with ongoing and in-depth community engagement during prototyping and testing

How people will access our solution:

Kolorob Jobs addresses a known gap in the marketplace. It will be co-designed and built with employers, young people (15-24 y.o.), and training institutes, to ensure we are incorporating their valuable insights on how they respond to employment needs and opportunities. Through our research we understand that 56% of slum households have access to a smartphone; there are currently 10,000+ Kolorob users. The project website, app on PlayStore and source code repository on GitHub will be open-source and free to users, collaborators and staff, and providing a reference point and technical resources 

Technology-Readiness Level:

4-5 (Prototyping)
Business Plan

Our organization:


How we will sustain our team financially:

Kolorob Jobs operates as an in-house start-up led by Save the Children staff in Bangladesh and Australia, supported by a pro bono Project Technical Management Group and Advisory Board (BD Jobs, Seek International and Western Sydney University senior personnel).

Our immediate project priorities include:

-Developing, prototyping the solution, focusing on user experience and job placement outcomes.

-Identifying 3-4 roles which hold broad appeal for jobseekers/employers on Kolorob Jobs.

-Building, growing Kolorob Jobs’ marketplace.

-Scaling jobseeker/employer users. If selected we hope to make use of Atlassian Foundation, Solve and DFAT/InnovationXchange networks to create pathways to scale and improve the business model.

The factors limiting our success:

Three key challenges:

  • Provision of a range of online and offline services catered to the specific needs of young boys, girls, men and women.
  • Securing a sustainable income stream to address youth unemployment and underemployment in the short to medium term.  Further support will be needed to finalize long term projected financials and investment strategies during the pilot phase.
  • Building a user profile capturing and job matching system to ensure job matching is fast, easy to use and effective.  

How long we have been working on our solution:

2 years

How long it will take to develop a pilot:

12-18 months

How long it will take to scale beyond our pilot:

18+ months

Our expected annual budget:


How much of our budget we've secured to date:


Partnership Needs

We're looking for partners in these fields:

  • Technology Access
  • Financial Inclusion
  • Income Generation
  • 21st Century Skills
  • Online Learning

Why we're applying to Solve:

Kolorob Jobs has a bold and ambitious vision to make job matching easier for the youth labour market. We believe the solution will only emerge through a networked-sourced approach to explore and understand the ‘challenge’ (opportunities and constraints) for youth. The Solve challenge provides a platform to develop, grow and scale the solution. The project will take advantage of technical advice, expertise and mentorship through the SOLVE network, to form effective shared value partnerships, enhance user experience and human centered design, and commercialization objectives, including securing growth capital to support scale-up.

Our current partners:

Save the Children Australia (Project lead)

Save the Children Bangladesh (Implementing partner)

BD Jobs (Technology and business partner)

SEEK International (strategy and business partner)

Western Sydney University (research partner)

Solution Team

  • Ms. Moshammet Shahida Begum Program Director-EYE, Save the Children
  • Nazat Chowdhury Save the Children
  • Scott Crighton Save the Children
  • Viet Duong Corporate Partnerships Manager, Save the Children
  • Liam Magee Senior Research Fellow, Western Sydney University
  • David Sweeting Founder, The Urban Platform Studio
  • TS TS
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