Remember ME - You Me and Dementia

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tapping the disabled workforce

Mumbai-based Hari Raghavan, 30, works for IBM India as a specialist in banking and financial services and helps companies in these businesses find technology solutions to business problems. In some ways, Raghavan is the typical software services employee. He works five days a week, up to eight hours a day; most days, he is in by 10am and starts his day by using Google alerts to scan for news related to his areas of interest. But Raghavan, who has an MBA from Mumbai’s Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies (NMIMS), is different in one way: he is visually impaired.

Raghavan reflects a growing trend in India—of companies hiring disabled employees for a variety of reasons, from a corporate social responsibility (CSR) initiative to tapping a larger talent pool. “In a talent-starved economy, it’s highly expensive for companies to have a narrow approach to talent pool,” says Ganesh Shermon, partner and head, human capital advisory service, KPMG India, an audit and consulting firm.

Raghavan, in fact, has the typical MBA’s career progression chart too—in seven years, he has had four jobs, including the IBM one. He has previously worked at Tata Finance Ltd, Jasubhai Digital Media, and GE Money.

In Bangalore, 25-year-old Veerabhadra E. is a team leader at back-office service provider Vindhya eInfomedia Pvt. Ltd. He works six days a week, and over 10 hours a day, and says he loves what he is doing. Veerabhadra is orthopaedically disabled.

The beginning
Companies such as IBM India Pvt. Ltd, Shell companies in India , HSBC India, E.I. DuPont India Pvt. Ltd, Tata Steel Ltd, Hindustan Unilever Ltd and Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd started hiring disabled people as part of their human resources policy of being an equal opportunity employer and increasing diversity in the workplace. The trend has since grown to include several other companies.

Even regional players such as Erode-based Sakthi Trading Co., the maker of Sakthi Masala, Vadodara-based engineering company Jyoti Ltd and Pune-based Sharayu Precision & Associated Manufacturing Co. hire disabled people for reasons ranging from business needs to doing their bit towards corporate social responsibility.
Vindhya eInfomedia began operations in June 2006 with five people. It currently has 90 employees, out of which 75-80 are disabled.


Forget yourself for others, and others will never forget you.

1 comment:

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