Opinion

Why Impact Sourcing Matters for Your Business

The quality and consistency of any company’s workforce plays a key role in the success of its operations. Business leaders are constantly on the lookout for sources of premium talent, and if those talent pools are associated with low attrition rate, the deal is even sweeter.

One sourcing strategy that has emerged as a clear difference maker in the last several years is known as “impact sourcing.” Also referred to as “socially responsible sourcing,” this strategy focuses on outsourcing jobs and supply chains to economically disadvantaged areas and/or populations.

While impact sourcing is basically philanthropic in nature, it also adds solid business value to progressive-minded organizations. Here are 5 key benefits that impact sourcing can offer for your business.

1. A High-Performing Workforce

Even though impact workers may come from economically depressed areas, or demographics that may not normally have as much access to work-related opportunities as others do, they can still be considered “high upside” employees. In fact, research and experience both suggest that the performance of impact workers is comparable to that of traditional workers in most applications.

What if there is a significant knowledge gap between impact workers and their more traditional counterparts? In many cases, business organizations have managed to bridge any such gap through effective training/onboarding programs. By investing in employees with great potential upfront, companies are in position to reap the rewards of their conscientious efforts for many years to come.

2. Lower Attrition Rate

Imagine yourself in the shoes of an impact worker. You’ve struggled to find stable work that offers a living wage for several weeks, months, perhaps even years. Now, a company offers you a position that can satisfy all of your basic economic needs. How would you feel at that moment? Would you be relieved that your job hunt is finally over? Would you feel gratitude towards your new employer, and determination to live up to the company’s expectations?

The point is, impact workers are in a unique position to appreciate what they have — and are often intensely loyal to the organization that gave them steady, reliable work. With that context in mind, is it really any wonder that there is a significantly lower attrition rate among impact workers compared to other employees? In fact, research indicates that impact workers have 15-40% lower attrition than traditional BPO workers.

What does lower attrition mean for your business? It means that you won’t have to spend as many resources on recruitment, new hire training, and HR administration. You’ll have a stable, engaged, and experienced workforce that can provide exceptional value to your target customers. Isn’t that any manager’s dream?

3. Long-term Cost Savings

DeveloperAlong with low attrition rates come increased cost savings. As mentioned in the above section, companies that hire impact workers often dodge the increased costs associated with a “revolving door” workforce. In the long run, this factor alone makes impact sourcing a high value proposition.

Additionally, impact sourcing typically offers upfront cost savings when compared to more traditional BPO solutions. For instance, impact sourcing in India has yielded exceptional cost-savings: a 35-40% reduction in expenses compared to a traditional BPO model.

In a global economy in which 59% of businesses use outsourcing to reduce their expenses, the impact sourcing model can maximize cost savings without sacrificing productivity and efficiency. It’s truly a “win-win” scenario for everyone involved.

4. A Competitive Advantage

Businesses that utilize impact sourcing also gain a key edge over their competitors in the market. We’ve already discussed the cost saving aspect of this strategy, which in itself constitutes a major advantage. However, don’t forget about the production side of the coin: impact sourcing offers access to previously untapped talent pools that can potentially infuse a company with skilled, innovative, and driven employees.

In the U.S. alone, close to 75 million people represent America’s untapped workforce. This is just one example of huge talent pools available — one from which businesses can readily draw motivated workers, if they choose to do so. This and many other impact demographics enable companies to avoid stiff competition over talent, and damaging “wage wars” with industry peers. Best of all, with a proper training infrastructure in place these impact workers can usually be just as productive as their non-impact counterparts, if not more so!

5. Social Impact

For many years, companies have acknowledged the global nature of supply chain logistics, and implemented strategies to maximize sourcing and distribution efficiencies while minimizing costs. While this approach may work at a purely “dollars and cents” level, impact sourcing aims to shift the embedded “values chain” of a product or service. In other words, this model aims at a more egalitarian approach towards wealth distribution than the purely financial considerations associated with traditional outsourcing models.

Many business leaders feel that this approach offers much more potential for long-term sustainability and growth than models that currently hold sway. It’s a sad reality that primary suppliers are often the lowest paid and most underrepresented links in the entire supply chain. While impact sourcing alone cannot untangle the intricate socio-economic web that traps these producers in varying states of poverty, it does aim to provide some measure of relief to struggling communities. This in turn may relieve some of the economic pressures that primary suppliers face, which is a huge step towards sustainability in of itself.

In simple terms, impact sourcing often creates opportunities for oppressed or excluded groups, which in turn result in a more stable global economy. It’s good business for everyone!

If you are interested in learning more about the benefits of an impact sourcing solution for your business, then you should reach out to an expert in the outsourcing industry for further information. At GlowTouch, we’ve built our reputation on offering world-class outsourcing solutions (including impact sourcing) to a wide range of clients. If you’d like to learn more about how we can help, reach out to us today.

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