Disability and work: towards a systematic approach to skills in the service of companies

According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), people with disabilities represent about one billion people and approximately 80% are of working age. Those who can, however, stay out of the world of work according to the organization’s latest surveys and experience higher than average rates of unemployment and economic inactivity and are more likely to face long-term economic fragility. .

Many companies have policies for respecting and promoting people with disabilities in the workplace. There are those who only implement the recommendations provided for in the law, but a large number of companies act outside this framework and rely on international recommendations in this field to find a competitive advantage. Created in 2006, Ipedis was one of the first expert structures that supported companies in making their digital tools accessible, starting from websites to pdf documents, but also in team training. In 2019, its founders Jackir Assan Aly AND Moses Akbaraly create DocAxessa start-up deep technology dedicated to the development of artificial intelligence.

Work accommodations for people with disabilities can also improve the accessibility of the company in general. The diversity of skills, perspectives and abilities are positive points, improving the ability of teams to solve problems and strengthening the sense of innovation of the whole company.

United Kingdom, accentuation successfully launched a program to raise public awareness of mental health issues and promote a culture of openness within the company. Some employees volunteer to act as “mentors” to other employees. Other companies have replicated the program in Australia, Ireland and the United States.

COMPANY Ericsson Brazil has created a program for employees with disabilities to improve their skills considering their potential. Therefore, their renewal rate has dropped from 40 to 5%.

In France, 5 Discovery experimented with the value of virtual reality training at Esat with its modules on job interview training and emotion management. Sofia Rufin, its founder, wants to promote the transition from the protected environment to the ordinary environment. Workers with psychic and cognitive features showed a strong interest in the process of integrating knowledge through this playful way, to work on communication, attitude and managing their anxiety. Awareness of these special circumstances is also within the reach of all employees of a company to put themselves in the place of disabled people.

Therefore, every company must find the means available to give an example of diversity by improving the competitiveness and sustainability of their activities. Even households where people with disabilities do not live have a better image of businesses that include people with disabilities. They are also more likely to buy their products and services. (Source: Tapping into Hidden Human Capital, Debra Ruh.)

Promoting people with disabilities and encouraging their integration into society as managers, employees, suppliers and consumers finally has an important advantage: companies are better prepared to cope with the lack of skills or the difficulties associated with the lack of workforce by tapping into a new talent pool.

Tribune written by Capucine Lemaire, President of the Disability Policy Observatory

<<< Also read: Technology and disability, a market serving inclusion estimated at more than 20 billion worldwide >>>

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