When an employer starts to build a diversity initiative, they’re often not expanding their scope to hiring individuals with disabilities, and this is a mistake. We know that profitable businesses are built on a workplace that is diverse, comprised of talented people from a wide array of backgrounds who bring their unique perspectives and experiences to projects, and successfully develop relevant and lasting solutions. These diverse teams should included the disabled.
We stumbled upon a few insightful statistics on the subject recently. A 2018 report by Accenture found that employers who included disability hiring in their diversity initiatives experienced higher productivity and lower turnover. This makes a survey by the Kessler Foundation from around the same time puzzling, to say the least. They discovered that only roughly 28% of companies with diversity hiring goals included disability hires. Why is this segment of the population so strikingly overlooked?
It’s likely due to a number of factors from employers being uninformed of the scope of diversity hires, the stigma attached to disabled workers, and simply not knowing where to look. We’re going to be discussing the stigma dilemma and how to combat it in next week’s blog. This week we’re sharing the resources employers should tap into for including disability hiring in their diversity initiatives.
How to advance disability inclusion
Simply put, disability inclusion is the active recruiting of disabled workers as part of a company’s diversity initiative (and if you need a refresher on how to develop one of those, visit our previous blog A Guide to Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace). Here are some excellent resources to help employers do just that.
- This Department of Labor webpage not only shares the organizations employers can partner with for disability hiring but also legal resources such as information within the Disability Act and tax credit materials.
- Every region is likely to have a Vocational Rehabilitation agency that serves as an outreach and support center for disabled workers. Partnering with these agencies is an excellent way to find skilled talent.
- Veteran agencies. Much like a Vocational Rehab agency, these organizations support Veterans returning to the workforce and make for excellent partnerships.
We hope these resources give you a sense of direction in improving your diversity initiative program. If you’re still feeling unsure on how to start, we can help! Eos HR is a team of HR professionals partnering with small businesses to implement smart solutions to meet challenges, large or small. Schedule a free consultation today to learn more.
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