Tips for disabled to use technology to advance careers
Note: Disabled people have extraordinary challenges over others in finding employment and income. However, with the age of technology, there are more opportunities available today to find work and earn those extra dollars. The following offers tips and links for those who are disabled about finding jobs and getting into the workforce using today’s technology.
The number of workers with a disability in the U.S. has gone up, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In 2021, 11.9 percent of the workforce had a disability. Despite the increasing numbers, people with disabilities are less likely to have full-time jobs. If you have a disability, here are some ways technology can help you with your career aspirations.
Build a Strong Resume and LinkedIn Profile
The first task is to update your resume and LinkedIn profile. Point out your top skills and noteworthy career accomplishments. Include a photo on your LinkedIn page and a blurb about your expertise. Consider upgrading to the premium version of LinkedIn so you can connect with more people with direct messages and see who looks at your profile.
Update Skills and Knowledge With Remote Learning
Technology may also be helpful if you need to acquire new skills or certifications. Check out remote learning opportunities for professional development to advance your career options. Post-secondary students may qualify for a 504 plan for accommodations to a learning program.
Find the Right Assistive Technology Tools
Depending on your disability, you may also qualify for assistive technology devices in the workplace. These devices may be dependent on your job duties and your disability. Assistive technology can provide accommodations for people with mobility issues and vision, hearing or learning disabilities.
Educate Your Employer About the ADA
Your employer also needs to be aware of the 1990 Americans With Disabilities Act or ADA. Employers may not discriminate against workers with disabilities, and they must provide certain accommodations depending on the size of the organization. If your employer is not compliant, you can report them through the EEOC.
Look for Jobs With the Federal Government
If you want to start a new career or switch jobs, you can use the internet to help you find a better opportunity. One option is to consider working with the federal government. Federal agencies work to make a more inclusive workforce and specifically aim to hire disabled workers. Go to local job fairs or look online for openings.
Get Job Hunting Help as a Disabled Veteran
If you are a disabled veteran, you may also qualify for specific opportunities, especially in the public sector. Some candidates may get hiring preferences when applying for jobs with the federal government. Disabled veterans may also be able to enroll in free training programs to help them land a new job.
Work as a Freelancer
Technology can also help you land opportunities as a freelancer. If you do any writing, design, consulting, coding or other jobs in internet technology, you can switch up your career plan by becoming an independent contractor. Freelancers enjoy a flexible schedule and more control over their job satisfaction. You’ll need to build up your client base and work on promoting your skills.
Start a New Home-Based Business
You can also take your freelancing career to the next level and start a new home-based business. Technology makes it easier to start a business from your home and avoid the costs of renting an office space. Pursue your passion and make money in the comfort of your home.
Disabled workers have more career options today than ever before with increasing advances in technology. Choose your path and build your career with these strategies that help people realize their strengths and dreams.