Diverse talent and multidimensional ideas, experiences and perspectives are the foundation of competitive advantage and successful innovation. Inclusion of people with disabilities in the workplace is a compelling opportunity and can lead to inclusive hiring and professional development strategies within every line of business. By demonstrating the depth of talent, the extent of feasible innovation, the increase in market share potential and the outcomes of a cohesive and healthy work environment, I think it is possible to forever change how businesses hire.
- In 15 years, there will be a shortage of 2 million skilled workers (Milner Canadian Labour force report). This is a critical failure, not just for HR, but for organizations, economy & quality of life in Canada.
- If you are looking to recruit the best person to fill a job vacancy you may be missing out on talented potential employees because you are not attracting persons with disabilities.
- Currently 795000 employable PWDs are not employed, of which – nearly half have post- secondary education. (Canadian HR Reporter –April 2015.)
UK: The pool of talented PWDs is over seven million people, or 18 per cent of the working-age population. *
ASIA & PACIFIC: There are 370 million persons with disabilities, 238 million of them of working age. Their unemployment rate is usually double that of the general population and often as high as 80% or more.
Reasons Why Employers Participate in Disabilities Mentoring Day
- To increase innovation—by making our business accessible to a largely untapped pool of talent, we attract diversity of thought, experience, and ways of working.
- To learn from each other: as we share our skills, experiences and challenges, mentees share theirs, helping to break down stigma around employing people with disabilities.
Disabilities affect a significant proportion of any workforce, either directly or through friends and relatives. The skills and expertise that your organization acquires and develops to support employees with disabilities often lead to innovations, and the realization of potential for all employees.
Managers who lead organizational advances in diversity and inclusion, gain skills in change management, and an increased ability to recognize and enable human potential. For sustainable growth and business development, it is vital to create an inclusive environment where every employee thrives, flourishes, and feels that he or she belongs.
In Oct. 2011- the UK Royal National Institute of Blind People found that retaining employees with disabilities benefits employers 2.5 times the initial investment in that employee. Research demonstrates that the total cost of replacing an employee, counting direct and indirect costs, is within the range of 70 to 200 percent of their salary. Reports show that staff retention is 72 percent higher among persons with disabilities, saving millions of dollars each year in recruitment and training costs.
FACT: Being an inclusive employer helps attract, retain and motivate a workforce that reflects the communities in which you conduct business.
“I think we have to consciously change how we think and operate as leaders and innovators at all levels. It is my opinion that we require a culture shift away from the focus of disability, challenge, difference & move towards focus on ability and potential of all, for the greater equation of improving all of our social and economic factors.”
* Sources: Business Disability Forum: http://www.businessdisabilityforum.org.uk/