Good Business Case to Hire People with Disabilities
By John Sobecki
There are numerous facts why it is good business to hire people with disabilities for specific jobs in the United States. In a country where there is a growing labor shortage many companies are staring to outsource work such as data entry and telemarketing to other countries. Unfortunately, there is also a growing labor pool of disabled individuals between the ages of 19 and 65. Some statistics indicate that as many as 70% of this population is unemployed. Without exploring the details of The Civil Rights Act or the Americans with Disabilities Act, the concept of social conscience or federal or state program incentives there are numerous good business reasons to hire individuals with disabilities. These reasons go right to the bottom line.
• The Department of Labor says that there will be 168 million jobs in the US in 2010 with 158 million available workers.
• Individuals with disabilities are not counted in that above stated labor force number and there will be more than 10 million disabled individuals who could fill that labor gap in 2010.
• Disabled workers are known to be as productive or more productive than their non disabled counterparts in similar jobs.
• Disabled workers take less personal and sick time off from the job than their non-disabled counterparts.
• Workers with disabilities are typically more loyal and stay longer on the job than their non-disabled counterparts (i.e. disabled workers are less likely to quit and leave for another job.)
• The cost of reasonable accommodation for workers with disabilities is said to be less than $500 per job. In other words it doesn’t cost that much for an employer to accommodate the job for an individual with disabilities to perform at that job.
• Research indicates that disabled workers are much more satisfied with their work than their non-disabled counterparts.
Here is specific business case example for employers and individuals with disabilities.
In the convenience store industry the average turnover of convenience store clerks is 100% per year. This means that all of the clerks hired in a given year would leave their job with a convenience store for one reason or another. The cost of turnover, not including compensation, is calculated to be at least $10,000 per employee and job. The cost includes expense for advertising the job, placement agency cost, expense for training a new employee and of course the manager’s time used for recruiting and training the new employee. It is known that individuals with disabilities who work in the convenience store industry stay on the job for and average of three years. In other words if you were a convenience store manager you would save at least $30,000 over three years for each convenience store clerk job you filled with a qualified disabled individual. Imagine if you had four full time clerk positions and filled them all with skilled disabled individuals. A convenience store manager/owner could save as much as $120,000 a year and $420,000 over three years by hiring a workforce of all disabled individuals! This is also without counting the improved productivity and lack of sick or loss time!
Now this does not suggest that the disabled should be convenience store clerks! But imagine all those employers who feel they need to outsource jobs such as data entry clerks, telemarketers, programmers and so on. If employers would hire the qualified disabled individuals imagine what it would mean to the profitability their business!
Make more money and hire people with disabilities!
John Sobecki is currently managing partner of the NJIT EmployMe program. He has extensive experience in building businesses nationally and internationally. Moreover, he has been a consultant and trainer for many multinational companies. If you have questions for Jon Sobecki you can e-mail him at email@example.com.