In this modern society, almost everything is managed electronically from bank transactions, to transport, communication and even in the advertisement.
Behind the move, there are individuals who are responsible for designing websites to enable various firms operate smoothly.
In the second largest city of Tanzania, Mwanza, comes Nelson Charles commonly known as Nellychazzy. His office is located at Bwiru corner, a few miles from the city centre.
The 24-year-old says in Mwanza city they are few people with similar knowledge but at times his colleagues visit him for more details and techniques pertaining the profession.
He says he designs websites for people, either for a group of people, individuals, or companies.
Nelson says when it comes to web designing, he is forced to lock himself in one of the rooms to avoid disturbances from colleagues and other customers who come to seek other related services.
“This is not social studies that one will think and fill the paper maybe during examination like we used to do in secondary school. You need to exactly come up with something expected by your customer,” he narrates.
The ever smiling young man says apart from this profession being his dream since childhood, he pursued a degree in information technology (IT) at Strathmore University in Nairobi.
“When I was young, according to my parents, I was very aggressive, I guess I have now grown. I always made my own telephone ‘fake’ kits using match boxes and the ribbon from old radio cassette tapes. I always disturbed my elder sister to connect and get to hear my voice from the other corner,” he remembers.
Nelson went to Nyamaharaga Primary School, a Kenyan school based at its border with Tanzania in Tarime district up to Standard Eight before joining Lake Secondary School, Mwanza in 2008 to 2011.
In September 2012, he joined Strathmore University at Nairobi but according to his secondary credentials, had to begin with a bridging course.
“I was admitted as a non-Kenyan and with rules and regulations, here we consider divisions but our neighbours check on grades so when they did equivalencies, I had to redo some topics before normal admission to join the rest. This took four months,” he narrates.
He graduated in May 2015, with a second upper class honour’s degree from the institute.
With this he knew there could be some jobs to do even in government sector because the course had no boundaries.
“I was full of modern software and hardware’s maintenance skills. Because this was my childhood passion, it became so easy to understand what the tutors were teaching us and the practical as well,” Nelson says.
He says, at his home in Sirari ward, Tarime district, very few people understood what Nelson went to school for. He therefore made his minds to relocate to Dar es Salaam.
Landing a job in Dar es Salaam was tough. For one, he only had one relative, an aged man who was working with one of the security firms. He therefore knew people under the lane of his job.
“I walked along many corridors looking for jobs but the responses were almost similar that they did not have money to pay him, he recalls.
This made him realise to some extent, that the knowledge he had was very valuable.
Nelson therefore opted to leave for Mwanza and do more hustling.
In August 2016, he landed a job with smiles communication as a sales representative within Mwanza city.
He did it for about three months and the contract expired. He had no reason to sign any more again.
“The package was not all that pleasing and because I was staying at my aunt’s place, I never bothered to exhaust myself by covering tens of kilometres doing marketing,” he said.
While working at Smiles Communications, he did some savings.
“I saved about Sh. 600,000/- because they were paying Sh200, 000/- a month. I took this money and handed it to my aunt who is familiar with Vicoba. She got a loan, Sh 2 million with affordable terms,” Nelso.
He initially had this plan in his head. After the purchasing used Apple laptop with all necessary features worth Sh 1.5 Million. He remained with Sh 500,000/- for other devices like modems, routers and some cables/wires.
One of his aunt’s rooms became a temporal office for a start. He was quite sure that with the working tools he had, obviously people with the need for a website will come.
With a few friends he had made in town, he shared the idea to them as well. But this did not work out. For about a month, he received no call that would let him express his potential.
“I was forced again to start walking in big offices in the city advertising myself. Almost all wanted a sample first. I had no option than designing one for a certain governmental office,” he says.
This opened opportunities for me. The old man I made a sample for, shared the message with a score of his colleagues.
Two months down the lane, that was October and November, 2016, I had moved to my own small rental premise which I was able to pay Sh 120,000/- a month.
He says with the flow of people to and from Rock City Shopping Mall, the biggest shopping complex in Tanzania and one of largest in East Africa has made him meet many people, knowing what he does. He works tirelessly.
Every business has its own merits and demerits as he puts it. Website designing entails many things and is categorized according to ones’ desire. The price ranges from Sh200, 000/- to Sh.5 Million and one project can take up to two weeks.
“There are classes of these websites, one will need a lot of decorations, colours and even securities but there are some who requires simple projects and easy to manage. That is why the price varies,” Nelson.
The pioneer projects or websites that he managed to design are, wtanzaniaclassic.com, www.storynzuri.com,www.hadithizetu.com and many more.
He settled the loan borrowed by her aunt on his behalf before even the expected duration.
Apart from the Bwiru Corner’s office which has six staffs, he has managed to open up a new office in Sirari. The one at Sirari also provides tutorial on how to open a simple website and manage it.
“At Sirari, we get different people from both Kenya and Tanzania. Some will need a designing while others will just want to know on how the whole thing works,” he says.
He adds that, at Sirari the office is managed by his campus-mate whom they both graduated with from Kenya. He trusts him. They offer the tutorial at a low cost so that when the number of attendants rise, they will be able to open up a class for lessons.
Additionally, the young man is responsible for her two sisters who are in boarding primary schools in the neighbouring country, Kenya.
“I always pay Ksh. 40,000/- per term which is equivalent to Tsh. 900,000/-. Though I began paying in the middle of this year, however, my parents appreciate my role as a learned person,” he brags.
He confirms that at times customers change their minds towards their intended orders when it is too late. This makes him feels so irrational but has to persevere.
“When I began this task, I would redo a customer’s assignment even twice, most of them just orders online and when they come to have the security and other stuffs, she or he tells you that this is not the right one,” he admits.
Nelson updates that the moment he gets married that is early next year, he will expand the Bwiru Corner office and adds more services like computer maintenance, soft and hardware installations.
“My fiancée is pursuing a diploma course at Sat Augustine University, in Information Technology the time she graduates she will automatically supervise this business here. We agreed that she will not look for an official employment until further notice and she accepted,” Nelson.