The Business of Impact SourcingOn June 12, 2017, SAP Ariba, a software and information technology company, and Samasource, a nonprofit organization working to fight poverty, announced their partnership. Both organizations hope to fight poverty through collaboration and an innovation known as impact sourcing.

Samasource, founded in 2008, works to fight poverty by using the model also referred to as socially responsible outsourcing. Impact sourcing primarily helps the disadvantaged rather than as a means of saving capital. The model provides impoverished individuals with access to work and training.

Samasource does this by partnering with other organizations interested in increasing the social impact of their companies. Using a business model called “microwork,” Samasource breaks down a company’s large scale data projects into smaller pieces. Then, they outsource the smaller projects to people in need of work in the United States and throughout the world. These new workers are trained in computer (and other necessary) skills.

Samasource helped lift more than 36,000 people out of poverty through this revolutionary model.

But impact sourcing is not limited to Samasoucre. Digital Divide Data is a social enterprise that seeks to deliver high-quality digital content to its customers. The company relies on impact sourcing to assist disadvantaged youth from low-income families secure jobs. Digital Divide Data helped lead numerous individuals out of poverty by doing this since 2001.

ImpactHub is an online platform that seeks to connect businesses with service providers that will match them with “high potential but disadvantaged women and youth.”

Currently, about 1.8 billion people around the world cannot find work and do not have access to higher education. Africa will soon hold one of the largest workforces on the planet, but will not have enough readily available jobs to supply their needs. Impact sourcing is a viable solution to this problem. Today, more than 500,000 people are working because of impact sourcing.

Impact sourcing is a growing business model. Similar to microfinancing, it continues to garner attention and support in the business community.

Rebeca Ilisoi

Photo: Flickr