Join us Saturday, June 1 for the 6th Annual ODC Food Truck Fest at Stauffer Park from 11am to 3pm!

Here at the Occupational Development Center we’re in the business of helping individuals with developmental disabilities find their best possible path to employment. In many cases, that might be in the community.

But, sometimes business aren’t used to thinking about hiring someone with IDD, whether it is to fill a vacant position, or perhaps create a job specifically for such an individual in what is known as “customized employment.”

For National Disability Employment Awareness Month, we thought it would be helpful to list a number of the benefits businesses get from hiring individuals with developmental disabilities. Feel free to pass this along the people in charge of hiring at your place of business. Thank you!

*A printable version of this list is located at the bottom of this post.

13 Benefits of hiring Developmentally Disabled Employees

  1. Employers love them

They win over employers’ (and customers’) hearts with their sincere smiles and willingness to do anything to help. Employers report that their disabled employees have a great propensity to remain open to new ideas and listen.

  1. Increased profits

The majority of employers who have made the leap and hired a disabled employee have seem a positive impact on productivity which, in turn, increases productivity.

  1. They have staying power

Unlike some of their peers, the developmentally disabled are grateful to have a job and do not seek new employment regularly. Lower turnover and higher retention save you money by not having to go through yet another hiring and training process.

  1. They want to succeed

Employers agree that these employees are committed to their work and dedicated to the company and exhibit a very strong desire to succeed and regularly seek more responsibility.

  1. They’re reliable

They were rated higher on taking fewer sick days, arriving on time for work daily, and returning on time from breaks than their co-workers. Lower rates of absenteeism increase overall productivity.

  1. They’re productive

Employers have enthusiastically indicated that they continually meet or exceed the performance their peers, increasing company profitability. They demonstrate high levels of productivity in a wide range of jobs. And increase productivity is contagious!

  1. They continue to improve

Their work performance improves steadily over time. Even those workers with more profound disabilities have shown great improvement, contributing to the bottom line.

  1. They are happy to be there

No attitudes here! Employers say they are extremely satisfied with their developmentally disabled employees because they truly love their jobs, embrace the opportunity to help the company grow, and respect authority.

  1. They inspire others

Employers have witnessed camaraderie and a positive effect on their entire staff. Co-workers seem much more open to teamwork when a developmentally disabled employee is on their team. They have also witnessed other employees enthusiastically helping disabled employees be successful.

  1. Customers like them

Employees with developmental disabilities promote a positive corporate image that increases customer base and loyalty. One survey revealed that 93-percent of customers said they preferred to purchase from a company that employed individuals with disabilities.

  1. They inspire a change for the better

It takes action to beget action. If more companies would hire developmentally disabled employees, others would be inspired to do the same when they witness first-hand what an incredible asset they can be.

  1. There are financial benefits

No-cost consultation and technical assistance is available to help employers hire people with developmental disabilities and provide on the job training. There are also tax incentives available for those who hire individuals with disabilities.

  1. It promotes workforce diversity

Hiring individuals with developmental disabilities promotes diversity in your workforce and is good for the employee, the business, and the community in general.


Interested? Intrigued? Contact us at for more information about how we can help you hire individuals with developmental disabilities.


Dowloadable/Printable version


*Some of these were taken/adapted from 11 Great Reasons to Hire Developmentally Disabled Employees and Top Reasons to Hire Persons with Developmental Disabilities.