Why I’m in Love with Impact Sourcing

Hands with hearts on the palm.

“Impact sourcing results in a more engaged and motivated workforce for companies,
and enables them to increase their global competitiveness.” — The Rockefeller Foundation

You need the work done and there are countries that are disadvantaged, war-torn or underemployed that have motivated, educated workers who can perform the work you need. It truly is the correct choice. Why continue outsourcing to developed countries or countries in which the vast majority of people already have access to the middle class?

Did you know that outsourcing to India is the number one reason it now has a thriving middle class? Are you aware that through outsourcing an entire generation was lifted out of poverty in both China and India? Do you know that when you outsource to a country, it can change the trajectory of people’s lives? In a 2003 speech, Anne Krueger, First Deputy Managing Director of the IMF stated that the impacts of globalization have benefited both India and China by lifting millions of people out of poverty since 1980 and putting tens of millions of people firmly into the middle class. In addition, China has seen their extreme poverty rate fall from 84 percent to about 10 percent largely because of trade, reports the Economist.

>> Learn about Microsoft’s journey to build and implement an impact sourcing program that benefits local and global communities.

Think about all the unbanked people in the world, those are people who are not served by a financial institution, do not have a bank account or are not connected to a mobile money provider. Currently, that figure stands at about 1.7 billion people according to the World Bank Group. By raising people out of poverty, they are granted access to universal financial systems, are able to use financial institutions with reasonable fees versus relying on expensive alternative financing options, and they are able to build credit. 

In India, there were only 300,000 mobile phones nationwide in 1996 and now it is estimated there are 650 million mobile phone users in India, and over 300 million of them are using a smartphone. Think of what their access to global (and local) information now affords them. Think of how this also benefits their access to education, news and business opportunities.

Socially responsible outsourcing and trading companies deliberately seek out workers in some of the world’s poorest places to provide not only jobs but the education, training and career counseling needed to support a thriving middle class in their country. In war-torn regions where jobs for people like engineers, teachers and doctors have become diminished, outsourcing can provide stability and reduces the number of political uprisings. Give a person security and you can also gain peace. In the previously war-torn regions of southeast Europe, you now find an emergence of outsourced workers who work remotely for employers in other countries.

I am in love with the fact that our industry has and can continue to lift people out of poverty all over the world. We can indeed change the world through sourcing! Join us this July for the Global Impact Sourcing Summit in Uganda and you can meet the people who are changing lives and whose lives are about to be changed. Please reach out to me if you would like more information.

I encourage you to raise up those companies who have committed to impact sourcing. SIG is now a proud member of the Global Impact Sourcing Coalition - BSR and invite you too to become members also.

Interested in learning more about the value, challenges and opportunities of impact sourcing? Download this presentation that has insights from Everest Group and Munu Technologies.


Dawn Tiura, President and CEO, SIG

Dawn Tiura is the CEO and President of SIG, SIG University and Outsource and has over 26 years' leadership experience, with the past 22 years focused on the sourcing and outsourcing industry. In 2007, Dawn joined SIG as CEO, but has been active in SIG as a speaker and trusted advisor since 1999, bringing the latest developments in sourcing and outsourcing to SIG members. Prior to joining SIG, Dawn held leadership positions as CEO of Denali Group and before that as a partner in a CPA firm. Dawn is actively involved on a number of boards promoting civic, health and children's issues in the Jacksonville, Florida area. Dawn is a licensed CPA and has a BA from the University of Michigan and an MS in taxation from Golden Gate University. Dawn brings to SIG a culture of brainstorming and internal innovation.