Hiring and retaining qualified employees is the number one staffing issue cited by employers, a concern that will become more pressing with the ever changing and aging workforce. To remain competitive, employers are looking beyond the traditional labor sources to access skilled, qualified candidates. This includes focusing their recruitment efforts on alternative sources of available job candidates, including those who are typically under-represented.
Facts for Employers
- People with disabilities have equal or higher job performance rates, higher retention rates and lower absenteeism than people without disabilities.
- According to a National Survey of Consumer Attitudes towards Companies that Hire People with Disabilities, 92% of the American public view companies that hire people with disabilities more favorably than those that do not. And, 87% of the public would prefer to give their business to companies that hire people with disabilities.
- People with disabilities are experienced problem-solvers with a proven ability to adapt. They bring unique perspectives and experiences to the workplace.
- Job accommodations for people with disabilities are usually low cost or no cost.
- A recent study conducted by the Job Accommodation Network (JAN) revealed that 56% of workplace accommodations cost absolutely nothing. Of those accommodations that did have a cost, the typical one-time expenditure by employers was $600.
Tax Incentives for Employers
Tax incentives can provide an added benefit for employers by offsetting costs associated with accommodating an employee or making their facilities and services accessible. These benefits include:
- Work Opportunity Tax Credit - up to $2,400 per year.
- Small Business Tax Credit - up to $5,000.
- Architectural Barrier Removal Tax Deduction - up to $15,000 per year.
- Disabled Access Credit - encourages small businesses to comply with the ADA. This credit is available to eligible small businesses and is equal to 50% of the eligible access expenditures which do exceed $250 but do not exceed $10,250, for a maximum credit of $5,000 a year.
Other Services Available
There are many additional services offered by a variety of organizations, both national and local, often at no cost to the employer. The goal is to make the employment process as uncomplicated as possible for both the employer and employee. Examples include:
- Situational Assessment - both the applicant and trained staff come to the job site to observe and/or participate in job duties. There is no cost to the employer for this time or service, nor are they obligated to hire this applicant. The assessment is an opportunity for the employer to observe this applicant in the job setting. At the same time, the assessment allows the applicant to see if this job is one they feel they can do and would like to apply for.
- On-The-Job-Training (OJT) - funding may be available to assist employers with training costs. This program can subsidize up to 50% of a person's wages while being trained.
- Job Coaching - trained and certified staff are available to assist the new employee with learning their new job at no cost to the employer. This can be an incredible money and time saver for the employer.
- Follow Along - trained and certified staff continue contact with employer and employee for 90 days to ensure the learning process is progressing as planned.
- American Sign Language Interpreter - certified American Sign Language interpreters can be provided at no cost to the employer for interviews and training sessions during the first 90 days of employment.
Read more about the organizations in our community that provide these services here.
Business Resource Network offers a variety of training opportunities and presentations to businesses large and small at no cost. Topics include:
- People First Language/Communicating with People with Disabilities
- Myths vs. Facts About Employing People with Disabilities
- Do's and Don't's of Employing People with Disabilities
- Employee and/or Employer Panels for your organization or event
- BRN informational sessions
To schedule a presentation for your business, contact Vicki Kerkvliet at firstname.lastname@example.org or 605-215-1760
Every year Business Resource Network sponsors an annual National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM) event in Sioux Falls to celebrate the employment of people with disabilities in our community.
Observed each October, NDEAM celebrates the contributions of workers with disabilities and educates about the value of a workforce inclusive of their skills and talents. Check back soon for details on the upcoming event!
Looking for employees? This video by the South Dakota Retailers Association features three South Dakota employees with disabilities and their employers, showing you why your workforce should include people with disabilities.