One of the mainstays for finding employment is networking.  The art of getting out meeting people, meeting employers and making connections in the area of interest for the job seeker.  What this really means is finding a company that is hiring in the field you want to work and then getting to know them.

The Inclusion Alliance is a Consortium of two Employment Support providers for persons with disabilities.  These two companies, Performance Plus Rehabilitative Care Inc. (PPRC) and Job Zone d’emploi (JobZone), have come together to share resources and ideas about how best to serve the clients and businesses of Cornwall, Akwesasne, and the Counties of Stormont, Dundas and Glengarry.  Personnel and Consultants from both organizations are assisting clients that join the Supported Employment Program in securing employment.

Peter Gray is a Job Developer with PPRC that works for the Inclusion Alliance. His role is to prospect for potential employers for current clients and future clients.  He is forever building his connections within the business community to identify potential opportunities and job matches for both the employer and the client.  One of the places Peter goes to meet employers, is the Cornwall and District Chamber of Commerce.  That is where Peter met Lynn Lee the Office Manager for Laptop Parts, they exchanged business cards and a connection was formed.

Mathew Laycock sought out Supported Employment Services and became a client of the Inclusion Alliance.  Mathew talks openly about his disability and how his social anxiety has prevented him from being successful in seeking employment in the past.  Mathew began working with Tanja Skanes the Rehabilitation Consultant and together they built a framework to help him find employment.  The action plan provided for the assistance of Peter Gray in working with Mathew to find potential jobs and then ensuring that the supports were in place to help him be successful.

Peter matched Mathew’s interests with the work at Laptop Parts.  He contacted Lynn and an interview was setup.  “I was nervous”, says Mathew, “my social anxiety was kicking in, but Peter was there with me at the interview and he helped calm the waters before I went in.”

“We hired him right away, he was the type of employee we were looking for, he has been excellent,” says Lynn. Since he has started work with Laptop Parts, Mathew has taken on more responsibility and is assisting in all aspects of the on-line business.  “I work with customers, I answer the chat line inquiries and I research and evaluate products to ensure that the customer is getting what they need,” says Mathew.  “The atmosphere here is great, it is positive and very supportive, and I have been able to adapt in a short time.”

The match between employer and employee is evident when talking to either one. Lynn says, “We really lucked out with Mathew and working with Peter has been easy.”

When asked if they would recommend working with the Inclusion Alliance to find your employment or hiring needs, it was a definite “yes” from both Lynn and Mathew.

Inclusive Hiring is a business mindset that brings benefits to the bottom line, creates opportunities and strengthens your company’s position within the market.

The Inclusion Alliance offers placement services for persons with disabilities at no cost to the employer. This hidden talent pool is smart for business and provides solutions where everyone benefits.

As an individual, or as an employer, if you are looking for employment supports check out the Inclusion Alliance website at www.inclusionallaince.ca.