oPuce | Deloitte Impact Foundation

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Supporting oPuce

Providing equal job opportunities for people with a cancer diagnosis, supported by the Deloitte Impact Foundation

Since 2016, the Deloitte Impact Foundation supports the organisation oPuce in their mission to improve the life and career after cancer. In this article Deloitte colleagues talk about the different phases of this initiative from the development and signing of a covenant, to designing, developing and being featured on an online platform which enables people with this particular history to accessibly get in touch with HR-professionals who warmly welcome them into their organisation.

Improving life after a cancer diagnosis

Isabelle Lebrocquy, the founder of oPuce, developed colon cancer in 2011. Shortly after her diagnosis, she was fired from her employer at the time. Once she recovered, she discovered how difficult it is to find a suitable job again after cancer. She decided not to give up, but to tackle the problem and come up with solutions. The result: the foundation of oPuce in 2012. oPuce is an organization that focuses on finding paid and decent work for people who have recovered from cancer.

Collaborating to make an impact

A former Deloitte Partner (Martin Eikenboom) introduced Isabelle Lebrocquy to the Deloitte Impact Foundation after hearing her story and her mission to help unemployed cancer survivors finding work. In The Netherlands 1 in 4 cancer patients lose their job because of cancer. Once unemployed it is very difficult to find another job and have to deal with other major obstacles, such as the impossibility of getting a mortgage or life insurance. 

The collaboration between Deloitte and oPuce started in 2016 when a team of Deloitte colleagues started their pro-bono project for the oPuce Foundation to help them promote the transition to full employment with the return to the workplace after cancer, by inspiring society and employers to look at the situation from a different perspective. Together, they looked at solutions which benefit both employers, employees and cancer survivors. 

Covenant ‘Werk en Kanker’

In 2017, Deloitte supported in developing and subsequently signing a covenant to give people who have been cured of cancer, or who are fighting this disease, equal treatment in the workplace as any other employee. Martin Eikenboom (Partner Deloitte): ‘It has been very inspiring to work with a group of Deloitte colleagues on the realization of the covenant. A wonderful opportunity to make a real impact from Deloitte.’ Watch the Media coverage of this milestone with Isabelle Lebrocquy and Deloitte’s previous COO Mario van Vliet on EenVandaag.

Data analysis by Deloitte and Amsterdam UMC

The developments in the labor market after a cancer diagnosis were researched by a ‘State of the State’ research team from Deloitte and the Amsterdam UMC, commissioned by oPuce. View the research here.

The CBS dataset consists of a patient group (all 64,228 Dutch people who were diagnosed with cancer and who were treated for cancer for the first time in the hospital in 2013) and a four times larger control group consisting of people who did not receive the first treatment in the same year on the basis of their first cancer diagnosis.

Isabelle Lebrocquy: ‘This research is a huge breakthrough. The collaboration between scientists and big data experts finally underpins what I regularly hear: on the one hand that a cancer diagnosis and work often go together very well. On the other hand, the same diagnosis often affects young people and especially young women in their careers. I hope this is the beginning of structural research. The support of Deloitte made the impossible possible.

Practice what you preach: online platform ‘The Talent Connector’

Signing the covenant was a first step, which was followed by the ongoing partnership in which Deloitte continues to support oPuce in its mission to help people with a cancer diagnosis. Not only with strategy advise but also with the development of digital solutions and a Platform for Work and Cancer (The Talent Connector).  Isabelle Lebrocquy: ‘Especially in this remarkable Convid-19 times cancer survivors must have our attention by providing equal job opportunities.' Read more about the launch of the Talent Connector in the AD.

Laurens van Wonderen (senior manager at Deloitte and projectlead Talent Connector): ‘In 2019 we started the design and realization of a platform that helps jobseekers who have recovered from cancer find a paid job. The first version of the platform is ready for further development. The platform helps cancer survivors to easily come into contact with companies that are open to people with this background. This platform also contains all kinds of tips and tricks to increase the chances of this group of jobseekers.

Visit the platform on www.talentconnector.nl (via your mobile, for the best experience). Deloitte colleagues from the teams Business Operations Engineering, Customer & Marketing and Enterprise and Risk Privacy Services designed and technically helped realise the platform.

Accelerating our impact

Laurens: ‘The great thing about this project is that cancer survivors offer a new perspective on a job. Not only by offering a digital wheelbarrow to a great company, but also all kinds of tools, tips and tricks to increase job opportunities. We are expanding the platform step by step and using the most modern techniques. This is always taking into account experiences and new possibilities. The collaboration between the participating companies is also inspiring as we work in an eco-system. For the participating companies, it is a great way to make large corporate companies more part of our society.

Our next step is the expansion of the oPuce Business Network with at least 100 companies participating on the Platform for Work & Cancer. For this platform we are developing additional digital tools to help cancer survivors in their return to work and in their job retention such as a quickscan developed with occupational physicians, and a serious game in job retention.

The Talent Connector

Isabelle Lebrocquy: ‘The support of Deloitte by the endorsement of the Deloitte Impact Foundation has been above expectation. It is a dream come true. Everything is possible. We first grew the oPuce Business Network with prominent employers, we started developing the digital solutions I was dreaming of to help cancer survivors in their return to work, and I finally got the data I had been looking for many years.

The Deloitte Impact Foundation

Through the Deloitte Impact Foundation, Deloitte is committed to bring a positive impact to society. We share our core competences, knowledge and network in societal initiatives to make an impact in the fields of education & employment, sustainability and endurability. Read more about the Deloitte Impact Foundation and view our other initiatives.

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