For Employers

TennesseeWorks Employer Advisors

People with disabilities can bring diversity and innovation to the workplace. Creating an inclusive workplace culture benefits all employees and contributes to overall success. Check out the great employers who comprise our TennesseeWorks Employer Leadership Committee. Hover over the images to read a description of each employer.

The TennesseeWorks Employer Advisors have been formally nominated and agreed to:

· Tell us how employers think by increasing positive attitudes, awareness, and knowledge of employers about hiring and effectively supporting young people with disabilities in their local communities.
· Share strategies for strengthening school-business and provider-business partnerships statewide.
· Tell us what employers need by identifying and addressing key concerns and support needs of diverse employers across the state.
· Tell us how to get the rest of the community on our team by equipping natural partners across communities to support youth employment and to foster community support for inclusive employment.
· Help us get the word out by designing a statewide awareness and social media campaign focused on employment.

Recruitment & Hiring

  • Employer Toolkit
    Author(s): Burton Blatt Institute at Syracuse University
    This guide is designed as an employer resource for incorporating people with disabilities into the workplace. Free
  • Building an Inclusive Workforce: A Four-Step Reference Guide to Recruiting, Hiring, and Retaining Employees with Disabilities
    Author(s): U.S. Department of Labor, Office of Disability Employment Policy
    This guide focuses on recruiting, hiring, and retaining employees with disabilities. Includes examples of inclusive workplaces and links to different resources. Free
  • Employment in Music City Video
  • Work Early, Work Often: Employers of Young Adults with Disabilities
    Author(s): National Youth Transitions Center
    “Work Early, Work Often” is a video series created by the Youth Transitions Collaborative. Together, the three-part campaign highlights the importance of work and work-based experiences in an individual’s transition to adulthood, particularly for young adults with disabilities. In this video, listen to employers discuss how exposing young adults with disabilities to real work experiences can help to meet the needs of a business and improve their bottom line.
  • Hire Gauge 
    Author(s): Think Beyond the Label
    The Hire Gauge tool helps employers to estimate the return on investment of hiring people with disabilities based on Federal credits, deductions, and rebates. It also provides information detailing how hiring people with disabilities can impact the culture of a workplace.
  • Occupational Diploma Fact Sheet. Learn why applicants with occupational diplomas make strong candidates for employment.
  • Steps for Small BusinessesSmall Business & Disability Employment: Steps to Success provides practical guidance for small businesses on how to recruit and retain qualified people with disabilities.

Laws & Regulations

  • Employer Resource Guide
    Author(s): Disability Employment Initiative
    This guide was developed to provide both public and private employers, human resource personnel, hiring managers and supervisors with relevant federal, state, and local level information around their legal obligations, along with resources that can assist in identifying, paying for, and implementing effective accommodation strategies. Free

Retention & Advancement

Financial Incentives

  • Work Opportunity Tax Credit Employer Registration Instructions. 
    Author(s): Tennessee Department of Labor & Workforce Development
    This document provides instructions to employers about how to register for the Work Opportunity Tax Credit.
  • Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) Handbook
    Author(s):TN Department of Labor & Workforce Development
    The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) Program is designed to assist individuals from certain targeted groups who have consistently faced significant employment barriers with re/entering the labor force. The program does so by providing federal tax credit incentives to employers for hiring these individuals. WOTC helps targeted workers move from economic dependency into self-sufficiency as they earn a steady income and become contributing taxpayers, while participating employers simultaneously reduce their income tax liability.
    This handbook describes the WOTC and provides information about how employers can apply for the tax credit.Download the 2012 research study by the American Society of Safety Engineers sharing performance statistics of people with disabilities in Walgreens distribution centers
  • Tennessee Jobs Tax Credit
    Author(s): TennesseeWorks
    This fact sheet provides an overview of the Tennessee Jobs Tax Credit for employers
  • ADA Tax Incentives 
    Author(s): Southwest ADA Center
    This download provides information on tax incentives for employers who hire individuals with disabilities, website accessibility regulations, and architectural barrier removal.
  • Job Accommodation Network (JAN) Tax Incentives
    Author(s): Job Accommodation Network
    The Job Accommodation Network (JAN) is an international, toll-free, consulting service that provides information regarding job accommodations. This publication summarizes tax incentives related to accessibility and the employment of people with disabilities.
  • Business Case Fact Sheet
    Author(s): TennesseeWorks Partnership
    This fact sheet provides an overview of why it makes good business sense to hire people with disabilities.

Creating an Accessible & Welcoming Workplace

  • Need help incorporating disability etiquette into employee orientation or training programs? Use this video
  • Disability Etiquette: Engaging People with Disabilities
    Author(s): Tennessee Disability Coalition
    This guide provides helpful information on disability etiquette. Topics covered include meeting a person with a disability, interacting with a wheelchair user, meeting someone with a cognitive impairment, engaging someone who is blind or has a disability that affects vision, meeting a person with a disability that affects speech, communicating with someone who is deaf or uses an assisted hearing device, using appropriate language, talking about disability, and general common courtesies for engaging people with disabilities.
  • Leading Practices on Disability Inclusion
    Author(s): Business Leadership Network and US Chamber of Commerce
    Business leaders were asked to share their successful disability inclusion strategies. This publication highlights these strategies, which businesses of all sizes can use to create a more inclusive workplace, marketplace, and supply chain. Real-life examples, such as these, are important to help businesses realize the wide range of opportunities available and the potential for replicating success. An assessment is also included as a tool to initiate or enhance your company’s disability-friendly corporate practices.
  • Workplace Initiative
    The Workplace Initiative helps companies recruit, hire, and retain the largest untapped labor pool in the country – people with disabilities. This site offers all the tools and resources your organization needs to embark on its inclusion journey.

Through the TennesseeWorks Partnership, we developed an exciting project called the Employer Outreach Initiative, aimed at changing the employment landscape for Tennesseans with disabilities. Trained presenters shared with employers why hiring people with disabilities makes good business sense.

Check out some of our videos for employers below: