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Getting Started

Now that the business case is made, the place where business leaders can go for help on getting started.  Taking action, even if they are small steps to get started.  You will learn about establishing an Employee or Business Resource Group (ERG/BRG), as well as the top benchmarking tool, the Disability Equality Index (DEI).

Disability Inclusion Employee/Business Resource Groups

Bring Your Whole Self to Work: Enhancing Job Satisfaction, Career Advancement and Company Productivity

Employee or Business Resource Groups (ERGs/BRGs) are groups of employees who form a workplace group based on shared characteristics or life experiences. Many Disability:IN partners support and drive the formation of ERGs/BRGs for employees whose lives are affected by disability. In addition to increased engagement from employees, ERGs/BRGs can provide business insight and support a culture of disability inclusion.

When a company disability-focused ERG/BRG develops effective strategies and tools to enable its members to bring their whole selves to work, it will better serve its members and its company. Employees who can bring their whole selves to work as competent and proud individuals with disabilities may find that they are better able to focus on their jobs, advance their careers and contribute to their company’s success. Resources that the ERG/BRGs of the Disability:IN partner companies have found useful are listed under three categories:

  1. Messaging
  2. Events
  3. Connecting and Building Trust

Disability Equality Index

About the disability equality index (DEI) 

What is it? What does it achieve?
• Annual benchmarking tool
• For U.S. Businesses
• Provides an objective score and roadmap
• Joint initiative between the American Association of People with Disabilities & DisabilityIN
• Eligible companies have 500 or more U.S. based full-time non-government employees
• What gets measured, gets done!
• Encourages transparent sharing of best practices
• Insight into broader industry trends
• Provides roadmap for company trajectory
• Additional indicator of potential long-term sustainability for ESG investors

Benefits for Wisconsin Members

• Network with professionals with disabilities and allies across Chicago
• Share best practices and local resources on disability inclusion
•Engage with local, regional and national experts through events on hot topics in disability inclusion
• Connect with local certified disability owned businesses
• Identify local sources of talent with disabilities
• Engage with community resources on inclusion
• Build relationships with local leaders on disability inclusion through affiliate board participation

DEI Scoring Methodology consists of 6 categories below: 

  • Culture and Leadership 
  • Enterprise Wide Access  
  • Employment Practices  
  • Community Engagement  
  • Supplier Diversity 
  • Non-U.S. Operations