International hiring solutions

Hiring in Zambia

Compliantly hire and pay employees in Zambia. 

No in-country entity needed.

Hiring in Zambia, located in the heart of southern Africa, presents a unique set of opportunities and challenges for global organizations. With a population known for its warmth and resilience, Zambia offers a diverse workforce eager to contribute to its growing economy. 

Understanding the intricacies of Zambia’s job market is crucial for international businesses seeking to tap into this emerging market. As the nation continues to develop its infrastructure and expand its industries, the need for skilled talent is on the rise. 

Common challenges when recruiting in Zambia

Hiring in Zambia, like in any emerging market, comes with its own set of challenges. However, with the right strategies and resources, organizations can successfully navigate these obstacles and build a talented and productive workforce. Here are some common challenges and practical solutions, along with how Breedj’s services can assist in hiring compliantly in Zambia:

Limited talent pool: Zambia’s talent pool, especially for specialized roles, can be limited. Organizations may struggle to find qualified candidates. To address this challenge, organizations can invest in training and upskilling programs to develop local talent. Additionally, tapping into professional networks and collaborating with local universities can help identify potential candidates.

Regulatory compliance: Zambia has specific labor laws and regulations that must be adhered to when hiring. Navigating these can be complex for foreign organizations. Breedj’s range of services includes compliance expertise, ensuring that organizations meet all legal requirements when hiring in Zambia. This includes assistance with work permits, visa applications, and compliance with labor laws.

Cultural sensitivity: Understanding and respecting the local culture is crucial. Misunderstandings can lead to HR challenges. Organizations should invest in cultural sensitivity training for their staff to ensure smooth interactions with local employees. Breedj can provide guidance on cultural nuances in the Zambian workforce.

Attracting top talent: Competition for skilled professionals is growing in Zambia as industries expand. Offering competitive compensation packages, career growth opportunities, and a positive workplace culture can help attract and retain top talent. Breedj can provide market insights to help organizations tailor their offerings.

Infrastructure: While Zambia is developing rapidly, infrastructure challenges, especially in rural areas, can affect employee mobility. When establishing operations in Zambia, organizations can strategically choose locations with better infrastructure access. Breedj can assist in identifying suitable locations.

While Zambia presents its own set of hiring challenges, organizations can overcome them with the right strategies and support. Breedj’s services, specializing in global workforce solutions, can be a valuable partner in ensuring compliant and successful hiring in Zambia.

Zambia's workforce profile

Understanding the demographic profile of Zambia’s workforce is crucial for international organizations looking to expand their operations in the country. Zambia boasts a diverse and dynamic workforce, and several key factors influence hiring decisions:

Education levels: Zambia has made significant progress in improving its education system. There is a growing pool of educated professionals, especially in urban areas. Many Zambians pursue tertiary education, with a focus on fields like business, engineering, and healthcare. International organizations can tap into this talent pool for specialized roles, but may also need to invest in training to bridge any skill gaps.

Language skills: English is the official language in Zambia, making it easier for international organizations to communicate with the local workforce. However, Zambia is linguistically diverse, with various ethnic languages spoken. Understanding the local languages can be an advantage, particularly for organizations operating in rural areas, where English proficiency may vary.

Specialization: Zambia’s workforce includes a wide range of skills and specializations. Mining, agriculture, and healthcare are among the prominent sectors. International organizations should align their hiring strategies with the specific needs of their industry. For example, the mining sector may require engineers and geologists, while the agriculture sector may need agronomists and agricultural economists.

Urban-rural divide: Zambia experiences an urban-rural divide in terms of workforce characteristics. Urban areas, particularly Lusaka, offer a more educated and diverse workforce. Rural areas, on the other hand, may have a labor force with different skill sets and educational backgrounds. Understanding this divide is essential for organizations planning their operations and recruitment strategies.

Youthful workforce: Zambia has a relatively young population, with a significant percentage under the age of 30. This youthful workforce can bring fresh ideas and energy to organizations. However, it also highlights the importance of offering career growth opportunities and professional development to attract and retain young talent.

Zambia’s workforce profile is evolving, presenting both opportunities and challenges for international organizations. Being aware of the education levels, language skills, specialization, and demographic factors is vital for making informed hiring decisions that align with an organization’s goals and industry-specific requirements.

Country fact sheet


Zambian kwacha (ZMW)




18.4 million (2021)


Southern Africa



Official languages


Compliance guaranteed

Breedj's local employment expertise in Zambia

By partnering with Breedj, you can eliminate the need to establish an in-country entity, and thus, saving valuable time and resources while benefiting from our local expertise to guarantee full compliance for your business operations.

Our platform has been designed to seamlessly take care of every aspect of the local employment environment, while you focus on your core operations.

Employment contracts

We handle employment contracts for both global employees and contractors.

Guaranteed compliance

Breedj ensures full compliance with your workers' local labor laws.

Global payroll

Our platform ensures accurate and timely international salary payments.

Legal expertise

Leverage Breedj's extensive expertise to navigate diverse employment laws.

Tax & contributions

Breedj handles tax & mandatory contributions as required by local labor laws.

Multiple currencies

Your workers are paid in their local currency, directly to their bank account.

Public holidays in Zambia

When operating a business or planning hiring activities in Zambia, it’s crucial to be aware of the official public holidays. These holidays can affect business operations, employee availability, and recruitment schedules. Here is a list of some of the major public holidays in Zambia along with their respective dates:

  • New Year’s Day – January 1st
  • Youth Day – March 12th
  • Good Friday – Date varies (Christian holiday)
  • Easter Monday – Date varies (Christian holiday)
  • Labour Day – May 1st
  • Africa Freedom Day – May 25th
  • Heroes’ Day – July 6th
  • Unity Day – First Tuesday of July
  • Farmers’ Day – August 5th (first Monday of August)
  • Independence Day – October 24th
  • Christmas Day – December 25th
  • Boxing Day – December 26th


These public holidays are observed across the country, and businesses should take them into consideration when planning their hiring processes, office hours, and employee schedules. It’s important to note that the dates of some holidays, such as Good Friday and Easter Monday, are based on the Christian calendar and may vary each year.

Additionally, some holidays, like Independence Day and Labour Day, are significant national observances and often include celebrations and parades. Employers should be aware of these dates and their potential impact on workplace operations.

Understanding Zambia’s public holiday calendar is essential for maintaining compliance with labor laws, managing workforce expectations, and planning recruitment activities effectively. It ensures that businesses can operate smoothly while respecting local customs and traditions.

Labor regulations

Annual leave

24 days

Sick leave


Maternity leave

14 weeks

Paternity leave

5 days

Employee probation

3 to 6 months

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Zambia labor market trends

The labor market in Zambia has been evolving in response to various economic factors and global trends. Here are some insights into the current labor market trends in the country:

Diverse economic sectors: Zambia’s economy is diverse, with key sectors including agriculture, mining, manufacturing, and services. The mining industry, particularly copper mining, has historically played a significant role in the country’s economy. However, there is a growing emphasis on diversifying into non-traditional sectors like tourism and renewable energy.

Job demand in infrastructure: Infrastructure development has been a priority for the Zambian government, leading to increased job opportunities in construction and related industries. Major projects such as road construction, energy generation, and urban development have fueled job demand in these sectors.

Skills shortages: Despite a growing labor force, Zambia faces skills shortages in certain specialized fields. Professionals with expertise in engineering, healthcare, information technology, and finance are in high demand. Companies often struggle to find qualified candidates for these roles.

Youth unemployment: Zambia, like many African nations, grapples with youth unemployment. A large percentage of the population is under 30 years old, and creating job opportunities for this demographic is a priority. Government initiatives and private-sector efforts aim to address this issue through skill development and entrepreneurship programs.

Digital transformation: Zambia is experiencing a digital transformation, with increased internet penetration and the adoption of technology in various industries. This has led to a growing demand for digital skills, including software development, digital marketing, and e-commerce expertise.

Investment in education: To meet the demands of a changing labor market, Zambia has been investing in education and vocational training. This includes partnerships with international organizations to enhance the quality of education and align it with industry needs.

Regulatory changes: Businesses in Zambia should be aware of evolving labor laws and regulations. Staying compliant with labor standards is essential to avoid legal issues and maintain a positive relationship with employees.

Understanding these labor market trends in Zambia is vital for organizations looking to hire and thrive in the country. Adapting to the changing landscape, addressing skills gaps, and investing in local talent development can help businesses succeed in this dynamic environment.

Breedj's platform

Current coverage

54 countries

Focus region


Salary payments

Supports multiple currencies

Time to market

Onboard workers in less than 24 hours

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Confidently expand to Zambia

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Drastically reduce administrative and overhead costs related to managing global employees.

100% compliant

Stay up to date with the ever changing global legislations, policies and local labor laws.

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Get direct access to our global employment experts to mitigate legal risks and penalties.

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Bypass the complexities associated with establishing a branch office or in-country.

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