- Posted July 31, 2020
Technology for Job Seekers with Disabilities
Written by guest author Patrick Young from AbleUSA.info.
The Americans with Disabilities Act makes it illegal for employers to discriminate because of a protected impairment. However, that does not make it any easier to search for a job and to prove that, with reasonable accommodations, you are the most qualified candidate. But thanks to technology, there are many ways to overcome obstacles and land the job of your dreams.
Which Jobs are Best?
There is no hard and fast answer to that question. People with disabilities do jobs of all sorts, from working as software developers to ringing up groceries. The right job for you is the one matches up with your passion and allows you to support yourself and your family. For many people with disabilities, however, working remotely is ideal. By working from home, you ensure that your workspace is set up just for you. You can be more comfortable and more efficient.
Finding a remote job is easy nowadays. Many companies recruit freelancers from online staffing companies that cater to remote workers, whether you’re a software developer, web designer, or blog writer. What’s more, you can easily download an app for most job posting sites that will alert you when any matching positions pop up.
Tools of the Trade
In addition to using tech to find a job, apps and services are also available to give you an advantage after you’ve been hired. Dragon Anywhere is a great example of software that can help you overcome problems, such as speech issues. This product can also adapt to your speaking style, and it learns over time, so the more you use it, the more accurate it becomes. You can also use it to control a device, which minimizes the need for hand-to-keyboard typing.
If you need to interview via video conferencing, there are apps for that as well. Skype and Apple’s Facetime are both options that you can utilize from your phone. Keep in mind, however, that you’ll need a device that can handle the apps, tools, and services you use. In addition to the right devices, you’ll want to make sure you have secure connections as well as virus protection.
Get Your Resume Seen
When you’ve spent days polishing your resume, you want to ensure it gets to the right people. Depending on your disability, the right people might be those actively searching for employees with physical or cognitive differences.
Employers look not only for experience but also training and signs of “soft skills,” which are those that SkillsYouNeed notes are not acquired by knowledge, but are comprised of things like a positive attitude and the ability to handle negative people. As an individual living with a disability, your soft skills are likely exceptional since you have already proven your ability to adapt to your surroundings. If you do find that you need assistance with job qualifications, such as leadership or technical training, you can look online for classes or ask your local Labor and Workforce Development office about programs available to you.
Finding and excelling at a job is not always easy, but there are many tools that can make it less of a hassle. From apps that allow you to type with your voice to mobile devices that keep up with you, the above are just a few things that can help you along the way. Remember, you have a disability, your disability does not have you, and it doesn’t have to hold you back from doing what you love — especially when you have a family to support.