The Canadian Down Syndrome Society launches a solution to the labour shortage: A first-of-its-kind online employment initiative that evens the playing field for people with Down syndrome.
North America is experiencing an unprecedented labour shortage. With millions of jobs vacant, employers are struggling to find qualified candidates to fill these roles. A solution that has been long overlooked is the Down syndrome community. Over 50% of people with Down syndrome struggle to find paid work, as they’ve been wrongfully perceived as less capable and less valuable within the workforce. An additional barrier to employment is connection: If employers do have interest in hiring someone with Down syndrome, there’s currently no central digital hub to connect with them.
The community will also feature key resources for prospective employers, such as FAQs and additional guides to help them in creating inclusive hiring and training processes.
Inployable solves two key barriers for employers. First, it directly connects them with ready-to-work individuals with Down syndrome, and second, it provides them with resources to close the information gap on hiring them.
When creating a profile for the Inployable community, individuals with Down syndrome have the option to connect with a Canadian LinkedIn Coach, to assist them with the set-up process. The coach can help with profile setup, adding new, relevant skills like punctuality, low absenteeism, meticulous attention to detail, organizing inventory skills, loyalty, to their LinkedIn profiles and teach the individual how to properly use the platform.
“Although many people with Down syndrome have demonstrated abilities and aspirations to engage in meaningful work in the community, a large percentage of the Canadian population with Down syndrome remains unemployed, are under-employed, or may not be working to their full potential,” says Laura LaChance, Executive Director, CDSS. “This initiative addresses that disparity. People with Down syndrome have a right to be employed in the community, where they can work alongside people of all abilities and earn competitive compensation.”
In addition to helping address employee shortages, hiring people with Down syndrome has been proven to have positive impacts on all levels of an organization—including client and customer satisfaction, workplace culture, staff morale, and more. There are also numerous proven benefits at the individual level, such as lower turnover and absenteeism rates, as well as increased motivation, and attention to detail.
The bold “I’m Inployable” video that accompanies the launch stars individuals with Down syndrome sharing their thoughts on how the current hiring system values their resumes: overlooked, underrepresented, and not worth the paper they’re printed on. They want to work, and they want to be seen as valuable contributing members of the workforce. They demonstrate their displeasure with the help of chainsaws, liquid nitrogen, and a wood chipper, making way for a new and better way of hiring — Inployable.
The launch film is being supported by hyper-targeted videos featuring members of the Down syndrome community speaking directly to specific North American companies within sectors most in need of staff. There is a supporting media buy to amplify awareness amongst business owners and HR personnel across North America.
The launch of Inployable is a call to action for the Down syndrome community to join the community and add their profiles to provide a rich resource for employers to find recruits and to post their open roles.
“This year we wanted to portray the Down syndrome community in a different light, to let companies know that there is an untapped community ready to get to work,” adds Andrew MacPhee, Executive Creative Director, FCB Canada, “The Inployable campaign is about providing the community with independence through equal access to jobs and employers.”
Strategy and creative were handled by FCB Canada, with production by Suneeva, editing by Married to Giants, visual effects by Wingman VFX, audio by Grayson, media by Initiative, and Glossy for PR.