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Saturday, 13 September 2014

From bottling industry to IT, India Inc finds right fit in differently abled as they bring more dedication to job : Delhi

A couple of months back when Prasad Corporation hired 50 people with disabilities, it unknowingly discovered a perfect fit for its digital film restoration division. Unlike its normal staff, the new hires with hearing and speech impairment, could cope better with high noise levels in the division. The company is now looking at hiring 100 more differently abled people this fiscal.

"Initially, they were a little slow, but they picked up after a couple of months. Now, they are better than the average employee in the division," said Sree Suresh, manager (talent acquisition) at Prasad EFX. "Other employees tend to take hourly breaks, but people with disabilities put in longer hours." Around 100 employees at Cafe Coffee Day who brew coffee are hearing and speech impaired.
Coca-Cola India too has employed many such people at its factory as bottling inspectors. Companies like Microsoft, IBM, Lemon Tree hotels, the Park, etc are all actively looking to hire differently abled people in various roles. Many companies are finding "right fit" employees among people with disabilities and are discovering that differently abled people are better than others in several job profiles.
Coca-Cola is one example. "In the factory bottling line, where the bottles are constantly clanking, hearing impaired persons are more suitable than other workers. We are continuously looking at engaging more people with disabilities," a company official said. In fact, Coca-Cola along with American India Foundation(AIF) is engaging other companies to find employment and train 1,000 people with disabilities by this fiscal end.
As part of its campaign, Coca-Cola through AIF is placing 600 differently abled in companies like Titan, Lemon Tree, Vodafone and National Association for the Blind by the fiscal-end. These companies have committed to absorb around 600 people by this fiscal-end, a Coca-Cola official said. Salman Khan's Being Human and Rage Frameworks have committed funds for the cause to Coca-Cola.
Realising the potential in the hearing and speech impaired, Cafe Coffee Day (CCD), is looking at adding more of such employees to the cafes across the country. "People with hearing and speech disability are the best brewers across all our stores," said K Ramakrishnan, president-marketing of Cafe Coffee Day. "They have a heightened sense of smell, this is very important for brewing coffee." Lemon Tree has engaged close to 260 people with disabilities and is looking at adding another 100 by the end of this fiscal.
Every month, the hotel chain conducts a sign language certification programme for all its employees. "To enable a smooth communication between employees with disabilities and the rest of our staff we religiously hold the certification programme where participation is compulsory," said Santosh Kumar Nayak, GM fromRed Fox Hotels (Lemon Tree). The Park, Hyderabad has hired around 10 persons with disability as a pilot project. The hotel sensitises all its guests on the floor before these employees take up the house cleaning task under a supervisor.

Source : Economic Times , 5th September 2014 

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