Employment of people with disabilities in Contact Center. Do you know what's coming? (CXBlog, translated from Portuguese by google translate)

Then you got another article on CXBlog. So what is it going to be about this time?

Employment of people with disabilities in Contact Center.

This is very beautiful, yes sir.

It is not because it is beautiful. Simply now is the time.

Why should it be now, Manel?

In October this year, 2018, Parliament passed legislation that aims to impose employment quotas for people with disabilities.
Legislation with this objective has been in place since 2004, but regulation is only now advancing.
All companies with more than 75 employees will be covered.

Explain that better there.

SMEs with more than 75 workers will have to have 1% of workers with a degree of disability equal to or greater than 60%.
Large companies will have to have 2%.

Ah. This is not even that much.

Currently, the average in the state is over 2%. But in the private sector it is 0.2%.
A concrete example - a contact center outsourcer with 1000 jobs may have to employ 20 people in these conditions.

Nobody will do that, you already know what this country is like.

Companies that fail to comply with quotas are subject to fines and other penalties.

You say that. And is anyone in the government concerned about this?

Ana Sofia Antunes - Secretary of State for the Inclusion of People with Disabilities - gave an interview to DN on December 2, where she mentions, regarding the quotas:
“The quotas will work. What was approved by the AR is that all companies, medium and large, will have to hire workers with disabilities, some 1%, others 2%, within four years. This will take effect, is regulated and fines for non-compliance and accessory sanctions are foreseen.
Now, we want this to go well and not to be hired just for hiring or not getting a ticket. It is really necessary that all of us, and when I say we, the INR and the IEFP, help to create structural solutions for approximation and mediation between those looking for a job and those who are willing to give a job opportunity to a person with a disability. To help bring employers and people with disabilities looking for work closer together. That's what we set out to do. ”

Okay, okay. I got the idea. But in good tuga way, as soon as you smell the fine, everything will find a way to comply. It's okay.

Yeah, but tuguismo is not enough for everything.
And Spain, right next door, is an excellent example. The role of ONCE and many other organizations in supporting the employability of people with disabilities in the labor market is well known. For decades. And the legislation that imposes quotas has been in force for several years.
But even with a culture of employment for people with disabilities that is much stronger than ours, the truth is that the quota is demanding and many Spanish companies find it difficult to achieve it. For reasons of accessibility and adaptation of spaces and technologies, but also for some prejudice that still exists.
And the same will happen in Portugal.

But what does the CX Blog and the contact centers have to do with it?

Everything. Contact centers can play a very important role.
Returning to the Spanish example, there are thousands of service positions throughout Spain that exclusively or almost exclusively hire people with disabilities.
There are outsourcers specialized in these contracts and who sell their services with the argument of helping the Client Companies to achieve the expected quotas and thus avoid fines. And with the same levels of quality.

Are you serious?

If you like, do a search like “empleo con disapacidad contact center españa” and you will find ads all over Spain and for various functions.
Eh there! This is going to be a manna! I'm going to say goodbye to the CX Blog and set up a specialized outsourcer there somewhere.

I didn't say it was a bed of roses! Do not send the termination (already)!

So say what you REALLY think about this, go

I believe it will work. But it will be a lot of work.
I believe that only with legislation to "force" companies to accelerate this process will we get there.
Nowadays there are relatively inexpensive software that allows, for example, the blind to work with some ease. The contact center facilities are already adapted for people with wheelchairs. And there are even a number of other shortcomings that do not require such profound adaptations.

And then? What do you think remains to be done?

I have spoken with several IPSS working in this area and it is agreed that there are two things to start with:
1. Change the culture of organizations and people. It is necessary, for example, to start working on mentalizing the contact center recruitment and selection teams. Or begin to anticipate changes in companies' physical spaces and support technology to increase accessibility: some of these changes do not have very significant costs.
2. IMPROVING and IMPROVING the image of the contact center sector. People with disabilities, despite much higher unemployment rates, have a bad image of the sector and it is not seen as something "friendly" for people with longer learning times or with higher space / access needs. Working with IPSS in this area can be a good start.

And besides escaping the fine, what do companies gain from this?

Contact centers need other sources of recruitment and many of these workers will have a loyalty and dedication to work that is not easily found. And people with disabilities need more adapted job opportunities.
Well done, it has something for everyone. It benefits workers and ends up benefiting even the social responsibility of the sector.

Are you not going to tell me that you are still going to make a reference to tip 186 of your book "610 tips for a contact center of excellence" that talks about this, or remember that your next conference is exactly on this topic?

No, I would be incapable.


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