workplace diversity including disability as a strategic business advantage n.
Skip this Video
Loading SlideShow in 5 Seconds..
Workplace Diversity – Including Disability as a Strategic Business Advantage PowerPoint Presentation
Download Presentation
Workplace Diversity – Including Disability as a Strategic Business Advantage

Loading in 2 Seconds...

play fullscreen
1 / 46

Workplace Diversity – Including Disability as a Strategic Business Advantage - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

  • Uploaded on

EEOC Executive Leadership Conference. Workplace Diversity – Including Disability as a Strategic Business Advantage. Louis Orslene Job Accommodation Network (JAN) May 3 rd and 4 th , 2011. Disability as a Strategic Business Advantage . Overview About JAN Debunking the Myths Business Case

I am the owner, or an agent authorized to act on behalf of the owner, of the copyrighted work described.
Download Presentation

Workplace Diversity – Including Disability as a Strategic Business Advantage

An Image/Link below is provided (as is) to download presentation

Download Policy: Content on the Website is provided to you AS IS for your information and personal use and may not be sold / licensed / shared on other websites without getting consent from its author.While downloading, if for some reason you are not able to download a presentation, the publisher may have deleted the file from their server.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - E N D - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Presentation Transcript
workplace diversity including disability as a strategic business advantage

EEOC Executive Leadership Conference

Workplace Diversity – Including Disability as a Strategic Business Advantage

Louis Orslene

Job Accommodation Network (JAN)

May 3rd and 4th, 2011

disability as a strategic business advantage
Disability as a Strategic Business Advantage


  • About JAN
  • Debunking the Myths
  • Business Case
  • Effective Communication
  • The Interactive Process
  • Creating an Inclusive Workplace
  • Effective Practices

About JAN

  • Established in 1983 as a national, free service
  • Specialize in job accommodations and the employment provisions of the ADA
  • Assist with the interactive process
  • Give targeted technical assistance
  • Provide comprehensive resources
  • Maintain confidentiality
  • Communicate via telephone, chat, text, TTY, relay, email, and social networks
  • Offer live and archived training
  • Work as a partner in making model employers

About JAN

  • Employers
  • Individuals
  • Service Providers
  • Others

About JAN

  • 36,500 contacts per year - 10,000 electronic contacts
  • 3,200,000 million Webpage requests per year

Debunking the Myths

Accommodations are too expensive -

  • More than half (56%) were made at no cost
  • Of those employers who experienced a one-time cost to make an accommodation, the typical cost of accommodating an employee was $600

Low Cost, High Impact (2010) JAN Study


Debunking the Myths

Accommodations aren’t effective –

  • Employers were asked to rank the effectiveness of accommodating a worker on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being extremely effective
  • Of those responding, 76% reported accommodations were either very effective or extremely effective

Low Cost, High Impact (2010) JAN Study


Debunking the Myths

People with disabilities do not have the talent and skills needed in business

People with disabilities have been among the greatest leaders and contributors to business, science, the arts, and society.

People with disabilities have a higher than average absentee rate

A recent DePaul study of 314 employees across several industries indicates participants with disabilities had fewer scheduled absences than those without disabilities, and that all participants had nearly identical job performance ratings.

People with disabilities leave jobs more frequently than workers without disabilities

Hire Potential, a hiring and staffing agency found that their placements stayed on the job an average of 50% longer than those without disabilities and Marriott employees hired through their Pathways to Independence Program experienced a 6% turnover rate versus the 52% turnover rate of their overall workforce.

Fortune Magazine reported that after Carolina Fine Snacks, a small business in Greensboro, NC, started hiring people with disabilities, employee turnover dropped from 80% every six months to less than 5%; productivity rose from 70% to 95%; absenteeism dropped from 20% to less than 5%; and tardiness dropped from 30% of staff to zero.



Business Case

What is the strategic advantage of including disability in the diversity efforts?

  • Aging of the U.S. workforce and accompanying rise of impairment
  • Increase of qualified youth with disabilities entering the workforce
  • Broadening of the ADA and stricter enforcement of Section 508 and Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act
  • Recognition that people with disabilities and their families have significant disposable income
  • Availability of assistive technology has enhanced productivity

Business Case

What is the strategic advantage of including disability in the diversity efforts?

In Ernst & Young's latest survey on globalization, James Turley, E&Y CEO writes:

“we found that the majority of respondents believe diversity of teams and experience improves both the financial performance and reputation of their organizations.”

James S. Turley, CEO, Ernst & Young


Business Case

What is the strategic advantage of including disability in the diversity efforts?

“Some 58 million adults - 34 percent - age 18 to 65 have at least one chronic condition, and 19 million adults - 11 percent - have two or more chronic conditions…It is estimated that by the year 2020, half of the U.S. population will have at least one chronic condition and one-quarter will be living with multiple chronic conditions.”

From Center on an Aging Society, Georgetown University

Data from the 2000 Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, from the National Health Survey.


Business Case

What is the strategic advantage of including disability in the diversity efforts?

“83% of working-age people with disabilities have high school diplomas or a higher education.”

National Organization on Disability, Harris Poll (2010)


Business Case

What is the strategic advantage of including disability in the diversity efforts?

“…87% of survey participants specifically agreed that they would prefer to give their business to companies that hire individuals with disabilities.”

A national survey of consumers attitudes towards companies that hire

people with disabilities by Neil Romano and Gary Siperstein (2006)


Business Case

What is the strategic advantage of including disability in the diversity efforts?Employer Reported Benefits of Accommodation 88% - retaining a valued employee 72% - increase in the employee’s productivity 59% - elimination of costs of training a new employee 52% - increase in the employee’s attendance 43% - increase in diversity of the company 39% - saving in worker’s compensation/other insurance costs 11% - promotion of an employee with a disability Low Cost, High Impact (2010) Resulting from the JAN Study of Employer Customers


Business Case

Why is disability a federal sector issue?

  • Executive Order 13448 – Increasing Federal Employment of Individuals with Disabilities
  • LEAD Initiative – Expedited Process for Hiring with Schedule A
  • Broadening of the ADA with the 2008 Amendments
  • An stricter enforcement of Section 501, Section 508 and Section 503 (Federal Contractors) of the Rehabilitation Act

Effective Communication

Language Tips

  • People First Language
  • No One is a Victim
  • Adults do not have special needs
  • Disabilities have various levels of impairment i.e. hearing, blind, autistic, etc.
  • Mental Illness, correct? Not denigrating descriptions such as “nuts”, “crazy”, etc.
  • Intellectual disability, correct? Not mental retardation

Effective Communication

Meet and Greet Tips

  • Just like you, right?
  • Write down what you want to say
  • Meeting and talking with a person with blindness
  • Sit down and relax
  • Intellectual disability
  • Cosmetic disfigurement
  • Service animal
  • Speech impairment
  • Ultimately if you are unsure about how to communicate, ask the person

Effective Communication

General Tips at Work

  • Abilities First
  • Adaptive devices and assistive technology
  • Communicate directly – eye contact - with a colleague with a disability
  • Gaining the attention of someone who is deaf
  • Communication preference
  • Ask the person first before providing assistance

Effective Communication

Supervising a Person with a Disability

  • Orient them to the evacuation procedures
  • Learning to navigate the office
  • Respect Privacy and do not make small talk about disability
  • Productivity tools - Just do it
  • But, if a person discloses and asks for an accommodation then begin the interactive process – communicate frequently and document

Effective Communication

Interviewing a Person with a Disability

  • Provide training to all the employees who might be in contact with a person with a disability
  • Focus on essential functions of the job
  • Disability does not need to be disclosed
  • Voluntary disclosure – affirmative action only
  • How to reply to a disclosure of disability

JAN’s Interactive Process

Step 1:

Recognizing an Accommodation Request


  • Err on the side of caution
  • Act quickly
  • Assign responsibility
  • Conduct training

JAN’s Interactive Process

Step 2:

Gathering Information


  • Find out the limitation and problem
  • Get information from the employee when possible
  • Remember rules for medical inquiries

JAN’s Interactive Process

Step 3:

Exploring Accommodation Options


  • Keep an open mind
  • Invite the employee to suggest


  • Ask the employee’s medical

provider for ideas

  • Use JAN when needed

JAN’s Interactive Process

Step 4:

Choosing an Accommodation


  • Consider the employee’s preference
  • Consider a trial period

JAN’s Interactive Process

Step 5:

Implementing the Accommodation


  • Make sure all necessary steps

are taken to implement the


  • Communicate with essential

personnel about the



JAN’s Interactive Process

Step 6:

Monitoring the Accommodation


  • Check on effectiveness
  • Maintain the accommodation
  • Encourage ongoing



Creating an Inclusive Workplace

  • Recruitment – Is your company disability friendly? Disability Outreach, company marketing, website, position descriptions, recruitment process, policies.
  • Selection – Recruiters, Hiring Manager, how to interview PwD, appropriate questions, accommodations.
  • Performance – Do you focus on performance vs. the disability, do managers have a performance standard for supporting disability employment? Coach, Mentor, Engage and Retain
  • Succession – Do individuals with disabilities know what positions they may aspire to, is internal upward mobility practiced for all?
  • Development – Are training programs, educational opportunities and internal learning programs accessible, are people with disabilities invited & encouraged to attend?
  • Transition – Are policies and practices for layoff, severance, retirement, etc. written and practiced consistently regardless of disability?

Graphic credited to



Creating an Inclusive Workplace

  • Websites
  • Online HR Systems
  • Intranets
  • Service Centers
  • Products and Services
  • Promotions – Marketing & Communications
  • Procurement

Debra Ruh, TecAccess (2011)


Creating an Inclusive Workplace

General Tips

  • Visit organizations with operational accessibility programs and benchmark their processes.
  • Enforce small, easy to make compliant issues first. Build employee/management expectations that accessibility is not difficult nor expensive.
  • Create a Road Map and Plan of Action
  • Offer training for several years. It is the second year that everyone starts to believe you are serious about accessibility

Debra Ruh, TecAccess (2011)


Creating an Inclusive Workplace

J.P Morgan Chase uses a top down approach…

  • Champion in the “C” Suite
  • Everyone from the Board to the CEO to senior division heads needs to lend their collective weight
  • Needs and direction of the new initiative should come from the top
  • Institutionalized channels of communication should be used to inform everyone company wide

Joan McGovern, Vice President at Corporate Diversity, JP Morgan Chase

creating an inclusive workplace
Creating an Inclusive Workplace

Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield uses a strategic approach to disability…

  • Establish a diversity recruiting commitment
  • Develop a diversity performance objective
  • Build a diversity and inclusion strategic plan
  • Train, train, train
  • Set a centralized accommodations budget

Tammie McNaughton, Getting formerly Director of Corporate Diversity & Work Life at Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield

creating an inclusive workplace1
Creating an Inclusive Workplace

Start by:

  • Indentifying internal champions
  • Developing an internal and external communication or outreach plan for the company
  • Developing a baseline and goals
  • Identifying external partners to assist
  • Developing a company-wide training program
  • Testing the accessibility of your systems
creating an inclusive workplace2
Creating an Inclusive Workplace

Start by:

  • Developing internal expertise concerning issues of disability
  • Updating your accommodation policy and procedures
  • Identify current employees with disabilities who are open about their disability and willing to for instance help start an employee resource group
  • Provide champions with information to dispel the myths about disability when they arise
creating an inclusive workplace3
Creating an Inclusive Workplace

As part of your internal communications - what everyone needs to know:

  • Who are you top champions
  • Who the point person and internal expert is for disability related questions
  • What to do if someone discloses
  • How are accommodations funded
  • How will they be held accountable
effective practices for recruiting and on boarding
Effective Practices for Recruiting and On boarding
  • JAN - Disability awareness and effective communication training; Readily available accommodation process information for applicants and hiring staff
  • CAP (Computer Electronic Accommodations Programs) – After partnering with CAP, you can then tap their resources to provide assistive technology and training to a new hire with a disability.
  • Your state vocational rehabilitation to identify qualified applicants with disabilities
  • Internship programs specifically for young people with disabilities i.e. Workforce Recruitment Program (WRP), Emerging Leaders, Entry Point, Career Opportunities for Students with Disabilities (COSD), etc.
  • Disability related job banks such as, One More Way Foundation, Ability Jobs, Disaboom, etc.
effective practices for recruiting and on boarding1
Effective Practices for Recruiting and On boarding
  • Have a process in place to follow up with applicants or candidates who disclose
  • Accessible and usable on-line application system
  • Accessible collateral hiring materials
  • Accessible tests required of the applicant or candidate
  • Voluntary, confidential self-identification form
  • Accessible training materials for new employees
effective practices for retaining and advancement
Effective Practices for Retaining and Advancement
  • Again partnering with JAN, CAP, your state VR agency or other local organizations
  • Have an accommodation team with a single point of contact for accommodation requests
  • Have a centralized accommodation fund
  • Have a confidential and objective process in place for determining accommodations
  • Practice universal accessibility by insuring:
    • software or hardware accommodation operates with your database systems and intranet
    • company training materials are accessible
    • company multimedia is accessible
    • company communications are accessible
    • Physical site is accessible

Job Accommodation Network (JAN)

Select Resources:

Recruiting -

  • One More Way
  • Workforce Recruitment Program (WRP)
  • EARN
  • Emerging Leaders Program
  • Career Opportunities for Students w/Disabilities (COSD)

Computer/Electronic Accommodations Program

  • CAP

Hardware/Software/Website Accessibility Issues-

  • TecAccess
  • SSB BART Group Inc.
  • WebAim

Leaders in Inclusive Workplaces -

  • US Business Leadership Network

Guidance, Publications, & Research -

  • SHRM Disability Resources
  • ADA National Network (DBTAC)
  • Diversity Inc.(Disability page)

Job Accommodation Network (JAN)

  • Contact
    • (800)526-7234 (V) & (877)781-9403 (TTY)
    • &