Thursday, April 11, 2013

By Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator, Thursday, April 11, 2013

RBC criticized on social media over foreign-worker outsourcing

Canadians took after Royal Bank of Canada on social media today after revelations of an outsourcing deal that will see some of its staff lose their jobs to foreign workers.

But in the end, the issue that sparked the interest of the federal government appears to focus on just one worker.

This all began on the weekend when CBC reported that RBC is subcontracting some of its investor services back-office work to iGate Corp., which will cost 45 RBC employees in Toronto their jobs. The iGate group, in turn, had to apply for temporary foreign worker permits, which the government said unacceptable if it turned out the rules were not followed.

RBC distanced itself from the events, saying it outsourced the function, and it’s up to the supplier to stick to the rules.

As The Globe and Mail’s Grant Robertson now reports, of the 21 workers iGate is using to handle the outsourcing, just one is in Canada on a temporary work visa. A further 13 are in Canada to work on a short-term basis only, and the rest have been hired locally.

Initially, there was no word as to the breakdown, or how long the workers would remain in the country.

In a message to RBC staff, chief executive officer Gordon Nixon stressed that RBC hasn’t hired any temporary foreign workers to displace Canadians.

“In keeping with standard business practices, when transitioning activities, our vendor has temporarily assigned a number of their employees on site at RBC to affect this transition with a small number remaining on a go-forward basis,” Mr. Nixon said. (Source; Globe & Mail)