In August of 2021, QVC knew they needed to fill 450 open positions before the peak holiday season arrived.
To add to the challenge, Allentown’s pool of English speaking prospects was limited. After working with QVC for years, EmployBridge knew that continuing to restrict new hires to English speakers could prevent the company from reaching its goal. That’s when the EmployBridge team developed a strategy for implementing a Spanish Speaking Only (SSO) program for QVC on an expedited timeline.
In 2021, roughly 70% of potential candidates in Allentown spoke only Spanish.
To capitalize on this previously untapped talent pool and help QVC reach its required headcount by the deadline, EmployBridge set out to implement an SSO program.
- Building the Team: The first step to launching the SSO program was building the on-site team. This included hiring a site area manager, three SPMs, and bilingual leads. The EmployBridge team hired one bilingual lead for every 20 SSO employees, or around 25 leads in total. All new team members were trained on the ins and outs of QVC’s and EmployBridge’s policies and processes during September 2021.
- SSO Program Development: With the bilingual leads in place, EmployBridge converted QVC’s entire orientation process from English to Spanish. This included all forms, training documents, presentations, and other onboarding information.
- Marketing Mix: To prepare for the October hiring period, EmployBridge launched an aggressive multi-tactic marketing campaign. With a budget of $150K, EmployBridge leveraged radio ads, broadcast TV, social media, digital marketing, and traditional job boards to spread the word. Word of-mouth advertising and referrals were also popular in the area, driving walk-in traffic once the interviewing process began.
- Starting Pay: The average pay rate for QVC prior to peak season was $18–$18.70/hour. To encourage applications and ensure the headcount was met within the deadline, the pay rate was increased to $21–$23/hour for peak season.
- Interviews: Soon after the interview process began in October, EmployBridge was conducting over 100 interviews per day, as well as 15 orientations each week. This pace continued throughout the remainder of the project.
- Headcount: All 450 open positions were filled by the deadline established by QVC. EmployBridge actually exceeded QVC’s required headcount by nearly 100%, filling 819 positions to prepare for drop-offs and no-shows.
- SSO Program: The Spanish Speaking Only program has been a complete success at QVC. Since implementing the program, QVC has noticed increases in efficiencies and other key metrics.
- Fill Rate: The SSO program has also simplified the process for filling open positions at QVC by dramatically expanding their prospect pool. This has enabled EmployBridge to maintain a 100% fill rate since the program’s inception.