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impact sourcing

Contributor(s): Ivy Wigmore

Impact sourcing is a business process outsourcing (BPO) model in which jobs or tasks are outsourced to economically disadvantaged areas as a means of improving the situation of people living there.

The impact model is not significantly different from offshore outsourcing in general, other than the stated intent: Offshore outsourcing is typically undertaken to minimize costs and maximize profits, while corporate social responsibility (CSR) is the implied goal of impact sourcing. The work is not necessarily sent offshore but may be conducted in disadvantaged areas within the country where the business is located.

In addition to the humanitarian and public relations components of impact sourcing, it typically offers traditional benefits to the organization as well. Attrition rates may be as much as 40 percent lower than is the case with BPO in general, and there are increases in employee engagement and productivity. The benefit to the workers leads to stronger communities and potentially a market for the organization's products.

See a video presentation on the business case for impact sourcing:

This was last updated in April 2016

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