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Hire Wisely: The Long-Term Effects of Employing People with Disabilities

January 16, 2017

Benefits to your business can come in many forms – whether it’s making the most of business tax credits or making staffing decisions with long-term benefits, a lot of the destiny of your company’s success lies in your hands.

Hiring people with disabilities is one of those decisions that can yield benefits for many years to come – here are some of them.

Happy customers

Think about your favorite retailers, restaurants, or service providers. What makes them special? Do they take extra care in their interactions with you? Do they keep a tidy store? Do they hire inclusively? National surveys have shown time and again that consumers value businesses that place importance on hiring diverse staff and giving more opportunities to people with disabilities. In fact, 92 percent of customers feel more favorable toward businesses who hire people with disabilities.

Long-term effect? Customers that value your values.

Productive work days

When faced with the prospect of hiring a person with a disability, what effect do you imagine it would have on your company’s productivity? You might have your facts backwards. People with disabilities, in fact, increase productivity of a business when given the opportunity of employment. With low tendencies to show up late or not at all, along with a high tendency to value the chance to work, people with disabilities are highly valuable employees.

Long-term effect? Deadlines and expectations met.

Knowledgeable employees

How much do you value a healthy pool of candidates from which to choose when you have a job opening? If you want your pick of the litter, so to speak, widening your net in the employee hunt is of merit for your business. Don’t count out people with disabilities – many have skills worth looking into next time you’re hiring. Keep in mind that more than 600,000 American scientists and engineers have some form of disability.

Long-term effect? An enviable hiring pool.

Accessible work areas

Particularly if you own a retail space with a lot of consumer foot traffic, having an accessible place of business is hugely important. All the more reason to take advantage of the tax credits that come with upgrading your space to be disability-accessible. These tax credits also positively affect small businesses – if you make less than $1 million in a given year and your employee base is small enough, you could quality for $5,000 in assistance toward making access for people with disabilities within your workplace.

Long-term effect? A fully accessible office, store, or building.

Sources: Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, National Science Foundation

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