SAP Social Sabbatical Supports Social Entrepreneurship in the Philippines

March 6, 2015 by SAP News 0

SAP talent provides pro-bono consulting services to four Philippine social enterprises

Taguig City, PhilippinesSAP SE (NYSE: SAP) today announced that 12 SAP employees have completed a month-long assignment where they worked with four social enterprises in the Philippines to assist with their pressing business needs and share best practices.

This short-term assignment is part of the SAP Social Sabbatical, a unique program for top SAP talent across the world to contribute their time and expertise to helping entrepreneurs and small businesses solve business challenges. The program’s implementing partner is PYXERA Global, a non-profit organization based in Washington D.C.

The 12 SAP employees from different countries leveraged their expertise in areas such as strategy, marketing, IT, HR, finance, and consulting and guided the four social enterprises in the Philippines on issues pertaining to staff skills, capacity building, and operational excellence.

Philippine social enterprises benefiting from SAP Social Sabbatical
Messy Bessy Cleaners Inc., Solar Energy Foundation, Hapinoy and Rags2Riches Inc. were the four social enterprises in the Philippines that benefitted from the SAP Social Sabbatical.

“It has been a great pleasure and privilege for our team to have had the SAP Social Sabbatical team with us for a month. To have a team of outsiders look into our business, and in this case a team of experts map our processes, is extremely beneficial to our growing organization. We are committed to ensuring that the seed that the SAP team has planted will be properly executed and by doing so, the help from SAP will extend to even the young adults that Messy Bessy will take into our program in the years to come. Lastly, having the SAP team with us for a month also opened the eyes of our young adults to the reality that we are all connected as humans, even if we live miles apart and come from very diverse cultures. The SAP Sabbatical is such a beautiful, inspiring and fruitful initiative that I personally wish more companies would follow suit,” said Krie Lopez, Founder of Messy Bessy.

Speaking on the impact of the SAP Social Sabbatical, Jim Ayala, Chairman of Solar Energy Foundation Philippines said, “Millions of Filipino students are unable to study at night because their communities are unelectrified. The Solar Library program of Stiftung Solarenergie – Solar Energy Foundation Philippines enables these kids to keep up at school by making solar reading lights available for them to bring home with their books. The SAP team has helped us enormously by organizing our program around clear phases and activities, and then building a tool kit that will be accessible by project managers and community partners across the country. The tool kit is community-friendly and culture-sensitive, which is important for acceptance and sustainability. Their work will really help us accelerate the roll out of our Solar Libraries!”

The Social Sabbatical selects projects on the basis of their strategic fit with SAP’s Corporate Social Responsibility focus on honing innovative social enterprises and the future workforce.

“The SAP Social Sabbatical was such a great experience for the Hapinoy Team at multiple levels. We were able to get the benefit of world-class talents helping us deeply analyze and strategize our social business model and operations, with very concrete outputs that can really help us catapult even further,” said Mark Ruiz, Co-Founder and President of Hapinoy. “But more than that, their interaction with team was extremely invaluable – they have helped us think and reflect on Hapinoy and our individual work with new, fresh perspectives. We are very, very grateful to Yasar, Michelle, and Koerg – a group we affectionately call our “Magicians.”

“We are very grateful for our SAP fellows! Priscilla, Caroline, and Vineet were amazing partners and advocates. In the short time they have dedicated with us, we felt their dedication and passion. They provided us with process analysis and recommendations for sales and product design,” said Reese Fernandez-Ruiz, President of Rags2Riches, Inc.

SAP’s vision to help the world run better and improve people’s lives
Every year, participants of the SAP Social Sabbatical Program are given the opportunity to turn SAP’s vision of “helping the world run better and improving people’s lives” into reality. They are exposed to emerging market dynamics, diverse teams, and have a number of opportunities to hone their leadership skills. To equip them, SAP offers dedicated sessions on career and personal development as pre-work. The sessions include three coaching sessions per participant to help them reflect on skill development and learning in a structured fashion. The employees also develop action plans on integrating their learnings during the Social Sabbatical assignment back into the SAP work environment.

Kathrin Heyd is a Service Owner for Technologies and Platforms at SAP Germany and one of the Social Sabbatical participants in the Philippines. She said, “I applied for the SAP Social Sabbatical because it offers not one but many unique opportunities – from working together with enthusiastic, motivated and talented colleagues from around the globe to making a difference on an emerging company. We were engaged with all our skills, experience, and gut with the sole aim of changing the world for the better! Even if it’s a small contribution, it’s a start – to breaking out of daily routines and realizing that every step counts.”

Since its inception in 2012, the Social Sabbatical program has seen tremendous success and incremental response from both SAP employees and organizations in the entrepreneurial, social, and education sectors in emerging markets.

“SAP is committed to helping the world run better and improving peoples’ lives by making strategic social investments that have a lasting and sustainable impact on society,” explains Darren Rushworth, Managing Director of SAP Philippines. “Through the SAP Social Sabbatical program, our aim is to empower our best talents in skills-based volunteering. It is an important part of our social investment strategy in order to support emerging entrepreneurs. At the same time, we recognize the potential this program holds for our employees across the globe to practice and hone their skills in diverse teams and markets. We hope to see this program grow from strength to strength in the light of its positive impact.”

About SAP
As market leader in enterprise application software, SAP (NYSE: SAP) helps companies of all sizes and industries run better. From back office to boardroom, warehouse to storefront, desktop to mobile device – SAP empowers people and organizations to work together more efficiently and use business insight more effectively to stay ahead of the competition. SAP applications and services enable more than 282,000 customers to operate profitably, adapt continuously, and grow sustainably. For more information, visit www.sap.com.

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