Even though it’s a young company in the early stages of growth, PairConnex wants to get involved in the community through philanthropic action and initiatives close to its heart. Throughout the year, the PairConnex team likes to give back to various causes for which they are solicited or to get involved as volunteers. Here are a few examples.
For 12 years, the president of PairConnex, Guillaume Fortin, has been an active member of the Club Richelieu Montréal, a group of Francophone businesspeople that helps underprivileged children. In addition to being a member and participating in their bimonthly meetings, he’s involved as a volunteer in their Christmas activity, which consists in organizing a holiday party for 200 underprivileged children from the Centre-Sud neighbourhood. Through his involvement, Guillaume has occupied all positions related to organizing this party. In recent years, he has more specifically been involved in finding gifts for the children. Thanks to an established collaboration with Canadian Tire, each child receives a Christmas present worth $40, mainly in the form of toys, board games and sports equipment. Guillaume also participates in the annual Club Richelieu poker tournament, which aims to raise funds to send underprivileged children to the Camp Richelieu St-Côme summer camp. Each year, he’s able to raise thousands of dollars for this cause that matters to him by leveraging his network.
Another cause that PairConnex cares about is the integration of immigrant workers. The company’s experience working on recruitment projects like ComparJobs has shown it the great injustice faced by newcomers, who are often overlooked in the hiring process. Frequently, these competent and qualified candidates are rejected in the first steps of the process, without even getting the chance to be considered seriously for the job they’re applying to. This behaviour by certain employers is often justified by various prejudices:
These observations led PairConnex to collaborate with the Institut de recherche sur l’intégration professionnelle des immigrants to develop a tool that will reassure employers at the time of hiring. The goal is to help employers realize that their worries about the proper integration of a new employee on their team are not related to the candidate’s ethnic origin but to their soft skills. Often, behaviours related to soft skills are not rooted in a person’s ethnic origin, but in their professional experience and the culture of the hiring company. This project has made a lot of progress in recent years, with a survey of nearly 500 people and some thirty interviews with employers and workers. It will lead to the launch of a new tool to assess soft skills in company culture, scheduled for fall 2019.
In the same vein, while PairConnex was experiencing a very busy period last May, it decided to call on the help of an intern from the Interconnection Program of the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal. For one month, Lydie Gouem Moussio joined the PairConnex team as Administrative Coordinator. When she was hired, Lydie had just arrived to Canada from Cameroon three weeks prior. Throughout her internship, the team invited her to different get-togethers, meetings with clients, and networking activities so she could quickly adapt to Quebec’s business culture. Not long after her internship, she was contacted by an employer for a possible job. Her initial experience at PairConnex allowed her to give her future employer a serious local reference.
Plus, for almost a year, the president of PairConnex has sat as a volunteer on the jury of the Support for Self-Employment Measure for the neighbourhood where the company is headquartered, Mercier-Hochelaga-Maisonneuve. This involvement allows the company founder to share his advice with new entrepreneurs who are applying for startup funding.
To conclude, throughout the year, PairConnex encourages different causes and charitable works for which the team is solicited. The list is long, but its highlights include: the 2019 Leucan Shaved Head Challenge and the Cancer Research Society. Plus, PairConnex offered part of its services in sponsorship and participated in the presidents’ club luncheon for the Moisson Rive-Sud, a food bank in Montérégie. At this event, PairConnex’s algorithm was used for the seating arrangement. Lastly, thanks to encounters made via the Business Clans, a project created by PairConnex in partnership with the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal, the company made a donation to and visited the Charles-Bruneau Oncology Centre at Ste-Justine Hospital.
PairConnex will continue to get involved in its community over the coming years. Organizations and associations that need to hold fundraising activities are encouraged to contact PairConnex for sponsored smart matchmaking services. A unique opportunity to create out-of-the-ordinary events. PairConnex also offers services to pair volunteers with tasks that need doing.