Investing in Indigenous businesses leads to greater economic empowerment, job creation and social return for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their communities, a recent report compiled by Australian leader in supplier diversity Supply Nation has found.
According to the report for every $1 spent with Indigenous business, an average $4.41 of social return is generated. The social and economic value created ranges from $1.13 to $10.93.
That means your dollar is working around four times harder when it is spent with Indigenous businesses.
But what do we mean when we say, ‘social return’?
Social return is the added value that relates to environmental, social, and cultural benefits that come from working with Indigenous businesses.
Examples of this include Indigenous-owned businesses strengthening their Indigenous employees’ connection to culture, owners of Indigenous businesses reinvesting revenue into their communities, and Indigenous business owners that were part of the stolen generation using their business to create a place of belonging and healing.
‘Indigenous businesses are more than a means of economic independence: they enable their owners to build resilience and pride in their communities,’ the report states.
‘For their employees, they sustain connection to culture, as well as provide a work environment in which to learn and thrive. For the families of Certified Supplier business owners, these businesses are a proving ground where young Indigenous people develop their capacity to pursue their desired careers and grow into leaders themselves. Certified Suppliers leverage every aspect of their businesses to strengthen their communities and culture.’
It is a statement that resonates well with Asquith Workforce Managing Director, Jillian Asquith.
“As a proud Awabakal woman, it meant a lot to me to not only start a business of my own but to create opportunities for other Indigenous people to pursue the fulfilment that comes with meaningful work,” she says.
“Our recruitment company Asquith Workforce is 100 per cent Aboriginal owned and operated and while we work with and assist people from all cultures and demographics, supporting Aboriginal clients, candidates and those looking to build their own start-up has a special place in my heart because I understand at every level, what those opportunities mean for both the individual and the Indigenous community as a whole.”
“Our recruitment company Asquith Workforce is 100 per cent Aboriginal owned and operated and while we work with and assist people from all cultures and demographics, supporting Aboriginal clients, candidates and those looking to build their own start-up has a special place in my heart because I understand at every level, what those opportunities mean for both the individual and the Indigenous community as a whole…” Asquith Managing Director, Jillian Asquith
So far, Asquith Workforce has secured roles for Aboriginal jobseekers across more than 50 industries including blue-collar and white-collar roles and has also worked hand-in-hand with business start-ups.
‘Supporting Aboriginal business and job seekers is key to ensuring local communities thrive and prosper both financially and culturally,” Jillian says.
“This report is proof that by investing in Aboriginal business, companies can contribute to ensuring both current and future generations of the Indigenous business sector are able to provide financial, cultural, and emotional growth to its communities.”