Diversity in its employees is one of the greatest assets a company can have. By employing people with different abilities and backgrounds, companies are able to garner the diverse knowledge and talents of their employees to work together toward a shared mission and vision.
People with disabilities have experienced unique challenges in their lives that have made it necessary for them to adapt in some way. Whether it be a physical or mental disability, those affected have had to change the way they approach a situation or complete tasks that may require a new way of doing things. People with disabilities have overcome certain obstacles and, as a result, can be a tremendous resource for companies, bringing a different perspective and innovative solutions.
Employers who are aware of the benefits of hiring people with disabilities and who make a practice of doing so are gaining access to a largely untapped labor pool. They are gaining employees with talent, dedication, fresh perspective and reliability that are valuable to any business, and at the same time are helping their companies grow in diversity and improve their stance on affirmative action.
According to the Job Accommodation Network (JAN), 57 percent of accommodations cost nothing, while the rest usually cost $500. Knowledge of this fact alone could help employers, considering hiring an employee with a disability, make the decision to do so. Many employers may have a misperception that job accommodations are costly and burdensome, when in reality, this is not the case. Making a one-time accommodation can help improve employee productivity, as well as increase employee job satisfaction, leading to increased loyalty and longevity with the company.
Employees with disabilities can provide companies with innovative ways of doing things and bring fresh perspective to the workplace. In addition to their professional qualifications and the knowledge and skills they bring, their unique life experiences make them valuable resources for any employer.