Advantages of employing someone with disability

Employing an individual with disability is very rewarding for both the employer and the employee.

Australia’s workforce is constantly evolving, with a common aim of accommodating our economic, environmental and social goals. Many industries are experiencing significant skill and labour shortages – especially in areas of growth, as well as battling the slowly rising costs of employing skilled workers.

Therefore, it’s important that employers consider employing a diverse range of skilled and talented people and take full advantage of Australia’s untapped workforce to meet ever growing demands of day to day business.

What are disabilities?

Disability is often invisible. For some people, disability may be episodic, while for others, it may be stable. One in five Australians lives with a disability of some kind, including those living with mental health conditions. It may be permanent or temporary, it may have existed from birth or may have been acquired due to an accident or as a part of the ageing process.

Disabilities range from severe to extremely minor, and people with disability of many different forms are already effectively contributing to the Australian workforce.

FACT: 32% of employees with disability work as professionals or as managers.

Although there may be additional equipment or modifications required at your place of business to accommodate their needs, there is also a lot of support available to help you. It is important to be prepared for your new employee by contacting the relevant agencies up front, to ensure you do not miss out on the benefits you are entitled to.

Reasons to employ someone with disability

Building an inclusive, diverse workforce benefits both your employees and your organisation. With potential employees with disability representing such substantial opportunities to your business, it makes good business sense to ensure that they are a part of your workforce!

These benefits include:

  • Reliability & Related Cost Savings
  • Affordability
  • Brand Reputation & Morale
  • Good Customer Retention
  • Broader Talent Pool
  • Wage subsidies

Reliability & Related Cost Savings

People with disability can often display a high degree of dedication and commitment to their role. Generally, they are known to take fewer days off, less sick leave and stay in jobs for longer than other workers.

These employee attributes create real business cost savings, through reduced staff turnover and lower recruitment and retraining costs.


It is said that the general employment costs for people with a disability can be as low as 13% of those for other employees.

With people with disability having fewer compensation incidents and accidents at work than other employees, studies have showed that their workers’ compensation costs are as low as 4% of the compensation costs for other employees.

Brand Reputation & Morale

Not only does hiring people with disability enhance an organisation’s image in the general community, people with disability boost staff morale and enhance a sense of teamwork.

Studies have shown that both employees and customers are more loyal to organisations that demonstrate they value social diversity and inclusion, and that their workforce treats all members of the community equally. Further to this, it is said that evidence of ‘inclusion’ is being taken into consideration when awarding contracts and tenders.

Good Customer Retention

An organisation that reflects the diversity of the wider community is likely to attract increased customer loyalty and satisfaction.

Employees with disability can help your organisation to understand what your customers or clients with disability may need, giving you an edge over your competitors.

Broader Talent Pool

When organisations keep their workplaces and recruitment processes open to people with disability, they ensure that all potential employees with the relevant skills, qualifications and experience hold the ability to be hired.

Being open to diversity attracts and retains the widest possible talent pool.

Employees within inclusive workplaces are also likely to be more engaged, motivated and productive – and are even included to stay with your business for longer.

Wage subsidies

Your business may be eligible for wage subsidies to support your employees with disabilities.

To be eligible for wage subsidies, you must have an Australian Business Number (ABN) and must not be a government agency, be receiving any other subsidies for this employee or job and have not previously received a wage subsidy for this employee or job

You will need to discuss your situation directly with your Disability Employment Service (DES) provider. This process must be done prior to the employee commending work. Additional paperwork will also be required once the employee commences work to support your application. The amount you receive could be up to $10,000 over a period of 6 months.

Need help?

AimBig have a high performing team of job coaches, each with a strong focus on empowering job seekers and connecting them with the right employers.

Contact us on 1300 034 997 to find out how we can help you.