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RBC Apologizes

It took them awhile to do some damage control. And in fact, at first it seemed as though nothing would be done at all, unless the government intervened as they said they would. But, after a long week of heated debate and downright outrage on the part of the Canadian public, RBC has issued an apology. And you can’t say that the bank didn’t go to great lengths.

RBC knew that a quiet statement on their website wasn’t going to suffice with this one. Major, national fires needed to be put out, and they needed to be doused quickly. So, RBC took out a full-page ad in all six of the major national newspapers. Within that ad is an apology to the workers that were laid off, an apology to everyone and anyone else that was upset by their recent move, and an explanation of sorts that what the bank is going to do to make sure this kind of thing never happens again.

To read the letter in its entirety, you can find it here. Otherwise, here is a summary of the main points made.

First, they make sure that readers know their name is clear.

“The recent debate about an outsourcing arrangement for some technology services has raised important questions,” the ad begins.

“While we are compliant with the regulations, the debate has been about something else. The question for many people is not about doing only what the rules require – it’s about doing what employees, clients, shareholders, and Canadians expect of RBC. And that’s something we take very much to heart.”

Then, the apology, along with the assurance that no one is losing their livelihood.

“First, I want to apologize to the employees affected by this outsourcing arrangement as we should have been more sensitive and helpful to them. All will be offered comparable job opportunities within the bank.”

Then, the bank emphasizes that they are looking at different suppliers they use, but that they will always continue to be a place of employment primarily for Canadians.

“Second, we are reviewing our supplier arrangements and policies with a continued focus on Canadian jobs and prosperity, balancing our desire to be both a successful business and a leading corporate citizen.

Third, our Canadian client call centres are located in Canada and support our domestic and our U.S. business, and they will remain in Canada.”

After that the letter pretty much goes on to state what great work RBC has done over the past many years, and how they will continue doing such good work – such as providing employment opportunities – for the duration of their existence.

What do you think of RBC’s letter? Is it purely a PR effort, or do you think they honestly believed they were simply outsourcing, and didn’t see the problem with it?

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