There is a growing trend that we are witnessing today to promote inclusivity and integrate the specially-abled into the mainstream functioning, thanks to the continuous efforts made by various non-profit organizations and government bodies. While all the energies are aimed to enable people with disabilities to gain universal access, equal opportunities for development, independent living and participation in all aspects of life, the pertinent question corporates and businesses need to ask is – Is inclusion merely a social responsibility initiative, or have we moved beyond social trends to looking at hiring them from a business perspective? Time to change our lenses?
3 key reasons why it makes sound business sense to hire differently-abled individuals
Corporates need to understand the various benefits of hiring differently abled employees, in order to find a large pool of untapped talent. Listed below are key attributes that differently-abled professionals would bring to the workplace.
A sense of loyalty
In today’s economy, people are moving from one job to another, like never before. Hence, hiring decisions made by the employers have to be absolutely right. This is because each hire brings along with it investment in terms of time, training and energy. A bad hire can cost a business and the replacement task can be quite troublesome. This has led to many businesses to look deeper into diversity hiring. Companies agree that differently abled workers are far more loyal, less distracted, more focused and do not resort to absenteeism as compared to able-bodied workers. They are proud to do meaningful work and gain a sense of belongingness to the place and people around them
Interestingly, when differently-abled workers are appreciated and valued for their good work, it creates a positive pressure on them to perform better and go out of the way. This not only boosts their confidence, but creates an optimistic environment which is extremely conducive for growth of the organization and its employees. In addition to this, people with any sort of disabilities are found to have a positive outlook and attitude towards life since they already have triumphed from their hardships. This motivates other employees to push themselves to their fullest potential and appreciate the unique value they bring to the table
Creating a compassionate workplace
The biggest benefit of bringing the differently-abled into the fold is that it creates an integrated workplace, creating a sense of equality among all. It instills a sense of compassion and empathy among people, thus fostering an environment of caring and sharing
While we understand that there is great amount of time and cost that goes behind training these employees, there is nothing that stops corporates and firms from translating this possibility into a reality. With technology as a backbone, there is hope of change in the society, towards creating a fairer, more inclusive and humane work culture. A world where every person deserves the chance to reach his or her full potential and become an asset in the true sense of the term.
A success story
A pioneer in water purification systems and a leading health and hygiene company in 2011 conceptualized the world’s largest customer care call center, managed by physically challenged individuals. Having products which require great maintenance and care, the company required a dedicated workforce to look after the call management function. In addition to the physically challenged individuals, the aim of this call centre now is to include the visually challenged into becoming competent executives. The vision is to achieve a five-fold increase in employees, going from 107 to 500 plus, in two years from now.