PRESS RELEASE: Multinationals and Call Center Providers Unite to Create Jobs for Refugees in Colombia
February 24, 2022 – Yesterday, the Tent Partnership for Refugees, a network of 200+ businesses committed to integrating refugees; IAOP, the global business process outsourcing (BPO) association; and BPrO, the Colombian BPO association, announced the expansion of their ground-breaking impact sourcing initiative to advance the integration of Venezuelan refugees and support their Colombian host communities.
At IAOP’s OWS22 annual conference, three multinational companies – Amazon, Tigo, and PayPal – announced they are joining Tent’s impact sourcing initiative, pledging to leverage their business operations to scale up job creation for Venezuelan refugees in Colombia. By encouraging their BPO service providers in Colombia to promote job opportunities for Venezuelans – or in the case of Amazon, ensuring that Venezuelans are being hired at its own shared services center in Colombia – these companies will help one of the most vulnerable segments of Colombian society economically integrate in their new communities.
“Impact sourcing”, also known as socially responsible sourcing, is a business practice where a company prioritizes suppliers that intentionally hire people who otherwise have limited prospects for formal employment. Companies with a global presence are increasingly looking to impact sourcing strategies to tap into new sources of skilled talent, while also supporting job creation for vulnerable groups.
Through this impact sourcing opportunity, buyers of BPO services can not only benefit from a stable and motivated workforce, but also strengthen their brand and reputation with consumers and employees who are eager to support companies taking a stand on social issues.
Ileana Cruz, Latin America Lead at the Tent Partnership for Refugees, said: “Multinational companies stand to gain a lot from encouraging their BPO providers to hire Venezuelans. On the one hand, BPO companies will be encouraged to hire a talented, motivated, and skilled workforce they might have initially overlooked, leading to considerable business benefits. On the other, multinationals will be sourcing professional, reliable services while demonstrating a commitment to social issues.”
Latin America faces an unprecedented refugee crisis. Since 2018, six million Venezuelans have fled instability and turmoil in their country. Countries like Colombia and Brazil have gone to great lengths to help Venezuelan refugees economically integrate; yet unemployment among Venezuelans remains exceptionally high. For example, in Colombia, where over 1.8 million Venezuelan refugees have resettled, they face an unemployment rate of 24% as compared to their Colombian counterparts. The Tent, IAOP, BPrO impact sourcing initiative aims to scale job creation for Venezuelans by uniting multinational companies and BPO providers through a coordinated effort.
Debi Hamill, CEO at IAOP, said: “Now is the perfect time for companies and BPO providers to collaborate on impact sourcing opportunities. We are incredibly proud of the companies that joined this initiative today, demonstrating a real commitment to creating job opportunities for vulnerable populations through their global supply chains. We hope more multinational companies will consider leveraging their influence and global operations to help refugees integrate into their new communities, in Latin America and beyond.”
The Amazon customer service team in Colombia is made up of more than 2,500 collaborators. Alejandro Filloy, Amazon’s Customer Service Director in Latin America said: “At Amazon we provide good jobs with great pay, great benefits and great opportunities. As a proud Tent member, we are excited to join this initiative and expand the job opportunities we offer to Venezuelan refugees in Colombia”.
These multinational companies are joining nine leading BPO companies – Alorica, Concentrix, Emtelco, IGT Solutions, Outsourcing Servicios Informaticos, Sitel Group®, Sutherland, Teleperformance, and Webhelp – that launched the impact sourcing initiative in 2021. To date, these firms have already collectively hired over 4,500 Venezuelans in Colombia and intend to continue doing so in partnership with their multinational buyers.
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About the Tent Partnership for Refugees
With more and more refugees displaced for longer periods of time, businesses have a critical role to play in helping refugees integrate economically in their new host communities. The Tent Partnership for Refugees mobilizes the global business community to improve the lives and livelihoods of more than 30 million refugees who have been forcibly displaced from their home countries. Founded by Chobani’s founder and CEO Hamdi Ulukaya in 2016, we are a network of over 200 major companies committed to including refugees. Tent believes that companies can most sustainably support refugees by leveraging their core business operations – by engaging refugees as potential employees, entrepreneurs and consumers. The full list of Tent members can be found here. Find out more at www.tent.org.
IAOP is the global BPO association that brings together customers, providers, and advisors in a collaborative, knowledge-based environment that promotes professional and organizational development, recognition, certification, and excellence to improve business service models and outcomes. IAOP’s members and affiliates worldwide dig deep at IAOP conferences, learn at IAOP chapter meetings, get trained and certified at IAOP courses and workshops, and connect through IAOP social media, all with one goal: better business results. Whether you are a customer, provider or advisor, new to collaborative business models like outsourcing, or you are an experienced professional, IAOP connects you and your organization to our growing global community and to the resources you need to get the results your company deserves and demands. Find out more at www.IAOP.org.
BPrO is the Colombian Association of BPO that was established as a non-profit entity in 2001. It is the first association that groups and represents BPO companies and their value chain in Colombia. With more than 75 associated companies, specialized in customer relations, it is the benchmark for the sector in the country. Find out more at www.bpro.org.