HireAbility Spokane (HAS) is an employment initiative of Spokane County, working in partnership with Wise, a state-wide, non-profit agency. HAS works directly with local businesses, in collaboration with other non-profit agencies in the Spokane region, to provide education, support and assistance in connecting businesses with capable, skilled individuals with developmental disabilities, who are seeking careers.
Thank you for reading HireAbility Spokane’s first newsletter. This quarterly publication will highlight our most recent employment successes, news and events of interest to the business community, as well as workforce development tips and insights for employers.
In the summer of 2016, HAS began documenting individuals with developmental disabilities, successfully employed in the Spokane region. Each one of these stories is unique, inspiring and exemplifies the value this untapped workforce brings to the work place, as well as the advantages of diversity in work environments.
Brian Walch: Kalispel Linen Services, Medical Linen Sorter/ Technician
Curtis Bash, manager of Kalispel Linen Services knew when he interviewed Brian Walch, he had found a great match for the needs of his company.“He had a great attitude and was very positive when we met. Since then, Brian has lived up to all my expectations and more.”
DID YOU KNOW?
Top Reasons to Employ Someone With a Disability
1. Return on Investment: Businesses that employ people with disabilities turn social issues into business opportunities. These opportunities translate into lower costs, higher revenues and increased profits.
- Reduce hiring and training costs while increasing retention rates.
2. Market: Customers with disabilities and their families, friends and associates represent a trillion-dollar market segment.
- A large number of Americans say they prefer to patronize businesses that hire people with disabilities.
3. Innovation: Employees with disabilities bring unique experiences and understanding that transform a workplace and enhance products and services.
- Stimulate new product and service development through disability-inclusive diverse teams.
Ways to Improve Your Hiring Process
1. Write Better Job Descriptions: Many companies write descriptions with lists of responsibilities and requirements that can alienate qualified employees.
- Focus on what your company can do for potential employees, and you’ll attract better candidate.
2. Fit the Personality to the Job: The right skill set may seem like the most important factor; the truth is that the skills can be acquired but personalities cannot.
- A trait such as empathy would likely be much more important for a nurse than an accountant.
3. Watch Your Reviews: Top candidates may not even apply in the first place if they don’t like what they see on sites such as “Glassdoor.”
- Actively manage your brand by responding to reviews, updating the company’s profile and sharing updates on the company culture and work environment.
We believe you will discover great value in taking proactive steps to include people with developmental disabilities in your next employee recruitment effort. HireAbility Spokane is here and ready to help you do this. Please contact Charly Walters at (509) 217-4142 or firstname.lastname@example.org for an informational discussion about how HAS can partner with you to help diversify your workforce, strengthen your brand, and improve your bottom line.
There is a plan and a purpose, a value to every life, no matter what its location, age, gender or disability. Sharron Angle