In New York, 90% of Uber drivers are immigrants with limited knowledge of various languages.
On Tuesday, July 27, Uber and Rosetta Stone reportedly partnered to give free language courses to the ride-hailing app’s drivers. According to their research, about 90% of all Uber drivers in New York are immigrants with none or limited capability to speak languages.
As explained by Uber, they aim to lessen this problem. Rosetta Stone is a Virginia-based company that offers technology software in creating language courses, and brain-fitness software.
Rosetta Stone’s 24 languages and Uber partnership
The Verge reported last Tuesday about Uber’s plans to give their riders, a chance to have a more stable job. Using the technology company Rosetta Stone, the ride-hailing app aims to help their drivers learn new languages.
As explained in their blog post, the said courses do not mainly aim for drivers to know how to speak in different dialects. After all, a driver that can understand their rider’s language is a good thing for the company.
Uber clarified that they wanted their drivers to take the language courses, for their personal benefit. They admitted that most of their drivers are immigrants. This means, most of them have none to limited knowledge in speaking various languages.
Due to this fact, Uber said they want their drivers to have extra learnings while employed– giving them an opportunity to change careers and look for a more stable job. After all, they said on their blog post that they know drivers are only working for their company as “temporary job.”
How to apply for the course?
Uber drivers, located in specific countries listed on the Uber website, can apply for the said language courses. Another requirement for the course is that the driver should have an Uber Pro app. There, the company said drivers must reach Gold, Platinum, or Diamond status to be considered for the course slot.
If you’re a driver who is also looking for a new job, Uber said on its blog post that all drivers can request a letter to their company as a recommendation. There, the app will detail all the achievements of the driver, including when they first signed up to use the app, the number of trips or deliveries they’ve done, their average customer rating, and top feedback.
As added on the report of The Verge, Uber was accused of not giving proper benefits to its drivers. The company, however, argued that the job gives flexibility for drivers. Thus, the reason of the said issues.
SoftBank withdraws Uber shares
In related news, SoftBank recently announced selling their Uber shares worth $45 million. BBC said the decision came after SoftBank lost money in another Chinese ride-hailing app, Didi.
SoftBank was Didi’s biggest stock owner with the company having over 20% shares. Didi shares plummeted to 40% after the US Market ordered platforms to stop supporting the said ride-hailing app.
Due to SoftBank’s decision in selling Uber shares, their market was also down by 5%.
SoftBank nor Uber have yet commented on the issues.