Hiring people with disabilities makes good business sense and it provides opportunities to individuals who are looking for a work identity. If your business is not making disability employment a priority in 2016, then you are falling behind. Here are the main reasons why you should be prioritizing disability hiring in 2016:
You’ll be complying with legislation
We all want to comply with local and national legislation- it’s pretty important right? In 2014, new regulations for Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act were put into place, requiring all federal contractors to maintain a 7% utilization goal for people with disabilities. In addition to the utilization goal, these contractors are also required to encourage employees to self-identify, keep records of disability employment and more. What does this mean to your business? You should strive to hire more people with disabilities, and perhaps try to reach your own utilization goal. If your company has 15 or more employees, you are required by the Americans with Disabilities Act to provide reasonable accommodations. Why not go above and behind to integrate people with disabilities into your workforce?
Your business will gain a new perspective
Hiring people with disabilities will help your business keep an open mind. Sometimes we tend to generalize people with disabilities and assume what they can and cannot do. People with disabilities are no different than you or me- we all have different skills sets. Look again at the job description you’re posting- what are the skills you need? How could reasonable accommodations be made? By considering these options, it will be easier to hire than ever before. Once you’ve brought on new employees, you may gain a renewed sense of moral or energy. People with disabilities want to work at a job they are passionate about- what could that new energy mean to your business?
Cut down on your training and retention costs
People with disabilities tend to stay on-the-job longer in high-turnover positions. What would it mean to your business to cut down on training or retention costs? Think about that extra money in your budget- the possibilities are endless! There are also quite a few tax incentives for businesses as well. Not sure what’s a good fit for you? Read all about tax incentives in this previous Blogging4Jobs post.
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You’ll gain customers and brand fans
Consumers want to support businesses that are doing good and giving back to society. In 2014, Nielsen conducted a study, 42% of respondents reported they would pay extra for products or services from companies committed to positive social impact. Wow- what an opportunity for your business! With such a competitive market, disability employment could increase your loyal brand fans. Gain amazing employees and more customers- that’s a win-win!
You can utilize local and national resources
Now that you’re hooked on disability employment (or at least considering it), where do you look for resources? Every state has it’s own set of regulations and employment agencies or nonprofits that could help your business make disability employment a reality. Visit Career One Stop, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Labor, to find local resources that could benefit your business.
There are many more reasons why you should prioritize disability employment beyond the ideas discussed in this post. Disability employment is the wave of the future! Look beyond “doing good” and make a difference in someone’s life. It’s guaranteed to make a big difference to your business as well.