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Multiplying Its Social Impact: Microsoft

(continued from GISA story – 2018 GISA Winners)


Hopper and Fernando Hernandez, Supplier Diversity & Sustainability Director, leveraged Microsoft’s strong $3 billion per year supplier diversity program to advance impact sourcing at Microsoft. This helped spread impact sourcing through Microsoft’s supply chain, a network of tens of thousands of global suppliers. Microsoft started by engaging and learning from social and enterprise impact sourcing service providers and then inviting their multi-national suppliers to share their vision.

As part of its strategic procurement process, suppliers who are completing impact sourcing are favorably viewed. Microsoft also includes targeted language in some RFPs for business owners who want to include Impact Sourcing as part of their outsourcing engagement.

Impact Sourcing in Action

Microsoft also provides philanthropic support to non-profit Impact Sourcing Service Providers through its grant program and has participated in such efforts as taking part in a cross industry/function stakeholder group to develop Impact Employment metrics, joining in over a dozen business cases on impact sourcing, and by making commitments to engage in impact sourcing.

Among its recent efforts are promoting the employment of people with disabilities in Microsoft’s global supply chain and sponsoring an Autism Empowerment Kit working with the Global Impact Sourcing Coalition (GISC) and suppliers. The kit provides employers with guidance, recommendations and resources for providing support and workplace accommodations to empower people on the autism spectrum throughout their employment lifecycle – from recruitment to training and career development. It is available for free download.

“For Microsoft, impact sourcing is about knocking down artificial barriers to employment and allowing high-potential individuals to bring their strengths to the marketplace,” Hopper said. “By partnering with our suppliers, we can bring people in who would not otherwise have an opportunity and support their success in the workplace.”

Both Hopper and Hernandez have seen awareness, interest and progress in impact sourcing pick up momentum over the past few years. Through the continued efforts of the Rockefeller Foundation and the GISC, impact sourcing is now more understood in the industry, and easier to quantify with the newly developed Impact Sourcing Standard and a measurement toolkit. (For more, see

For their parts, Hopper and Hernandez said they were both honored and humbled to accept the GISA on behalf of Microsoft. But even more so, they are excited about the visibility and attention IAOP will help raise for impact sourcing through the new award program.

“The GISA is great and a call to action for people to get engaged and involved,” Hernandez said. “It is a journey to truly make a meaningful difference on society.”

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