About the ABC

What is the ABC?
The American Business Collaboration (ABC) is a groundbreaking collaboration of leading U.S. companies (Champions) partnering to ensure that their employees have access to quality dependent care programs and services to help them manage their work and personal responsibilities. Current ABC Champion companies are: Deloitte & Touche, Exxon Mobil Corporation, IBM Corporation, Johnson & Johnson, and Texas Instruments.

The basic principle guiding the ABC is the belief that companies can accomplish more by working together than by working alone. By improving dependent care issues to enhance the work/life balance for employees, ABC Champions impact their corporate bottom line and experience measurable business results. During the first nine years, the goal of the ABC was to improve the quality and supply of dependent care programs in the United States. As ABC enters its 10th year, it has expanded its vision of collaboration to include new ways to support employees in the evolving workplace.

1992-2002-Ten years of commitment to dependent care issues
In 1992, a group of leading corporations joined together to form the American Business Collaboration for Quality Dependent Care. They committed $25.4 million to ensure that their employees had access to the quality care needed for young and school-age children as well as elderly relatives. In 1995, the Champions expanded their commitment to $125 million to increase the local supply and the quality of dependent care programs in more than 65 communities where their employees live and work.

Over this ten-year timeframe, more than 1,500 childcare and eldercare projects were funded through ABC's efforts, impacting more than 135,000 children and elders. Innovative programs for backup care, elder care services, intergenerational programs and school-age programs were developed to alleviate gaps between the needs of working families and available services and programs in identified communities across the country. In addition, quality curricula was developed to train caregivers and improve the quality of child-care, school-age care and elder care programs and services. These innovative programs and services exemplify the ABC's belief that through collaboration, companies can accomplish more to improve and expand dependent care resources for employees and make a positive contribution in local communities.

2002 and beyond-Corporate Leaders for the Evolving Workforce
Almost a decade later, now with $136 million in total funding, the American Business Collaboration has reinvented the definition of "corporate collaboration" to include the unprecedented sharing of expertise, information and leadership, in addition to financial resources, between Champion companies to make a greater impact on the needs of a changing workplace and workforce. This year, the ABC will launch three initiatives under this new model of collaboration: a national action-based research study to understand the challenges and issues facing employees who work in a remote work environment; a 2002 school-age pilot project to replicate a successful after-school apprenticeship program model; and broad replication of ABC's most successful solutions-based dependent care programs to improve quality dependent care nationwide. These initiatives will help ABC achieve its goals for 2002 and beyond: to provide corporate leadership on work/life issues and directly impact employees in communities where they live and work.

How ABC Works
Since 1992, the ABC has contracted with WFD Consulting to develop ABC's vision and strategy and implement ABC programs. For more than 25 years, WFD Consulting has pioneered innovative workplace solutions for leading organizations around the world. WFD has helped clients maximize business results through assessing needs and implementing solutions regarding dependent care, workplace flexibility, women's advancement and retention, people-focused work redesign and employee commitment.

ABC companies utilize the services of WFD to design, develop, implement and monitor all aspects of the collaboration and to create strategies that align their ABC efforts with their overall business goals and objectives. Through project management and implementation, WFD tracks employee participation levels and provides technical assistance to service providers to assure program quality and stability.

 

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