Engaging the (PWD’s) People with Disabilities Employees – Challenge for Indian Organisations

In India 8551 are disabled employees (PWD), out of which 35.85% are women. The surprising fact is that only 10 companies are sensitive to this issue who are hiring these PWD’s out of which 8 companies belong to public sector. The general perception about the PWD’s is that they are unqualified and not productive, which restricts the Indian organizations to recruit more number of PWD’s. Majority of the companies do not have written policies on PWD employment.

The highest numbers of PWD employees are recruited by State Bank of India with 2692 employees. Among the private sector in India, TCS and Wipro are the biggest recruiters of such talents. Wipro has more than 500 PWD employees in many main stream roles such as consulting, testing, marketing, leadership and HR.

Some of the other prominent employers in private sector in India who hire PWD employees

  • Vindhya E Infomedia Pvt Ltd, Bengaluru:95 % of the employees are from PWD category managing the data management, data entry, data processing, conversion jobs.
  • Titan Industries:It has 4% PWD work force. Titan arranges for special competency mapping, training sessions to the supervisors as well as peer level staff to sensitize them about working with talent with disabilities.
  • Lemon Tree Hotels:400 PWD employees, comprising of 13% of its total manpower. The PWD employees consist of speech and hearing impairment, orthopedically handicapped and even with down symptoms.  In fact one visually impaired employee is working in the corporate office as a part of the President and Executive Director’s team. Employees are spread across the supervisory roles, management roles, semi-skilled in F&B Services and unskilled in Kitchen Services.
  • Shakti Masala:200 physically and mentally challenged employees working at different levels
  • Devyani International(Largest Franchisee of Pizza Hut & KFC)– 200 PWD’s with hearing impairment recruited in all departments starting from dough making, pizza making, delivery, cash handling and record keeping.
  • ITC: 90 PWD’s with orthopedic impairment, hearing impairment, visual impairment and cerebral palsy for secretarial role, desk jobs, sales and reservations.

These organizations feel that such talents are more engaged to their jobs, exhibit more sense of loyalty with low absenteeism and are good at their performance level.

The efforts which organisations need to take to engage the employees with disabilities are :

  • Involvement of Top Management
  • Sound and supportive HR Policies
  • Efforts to create an inclusive environment to support PWD staff among other employees
  • Collaboration with NGO’s to update their skills regularly
  • Modifications in the infrastructure to support the PWD employees
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