Northwest Center Partners with Tech Neighbor to Establish National Model of Inclusion
By Sarah Rothman
Director, Project Inclusion
Being located in one of the quickest-growing tech centers in the world, Northwest Center cherishes the opportunity to partner with our forward-thinking neighbors. Our employment team is proud to be working on a sustainable, long-term relationship with one of the largest tech companies in Seattle. Building off of a pilot program in 2015, the long-term objective of the partnership with Northwest Center is to attract and retain a part-time driven and diverse workforce. By developing an inclusive, broad staffing network, we are placing people with disabilities who are looking for part-time opportunities in independent, competitive employment.
A key feature of Northwest Center’s Model of Inclusive Employment is collaboration with a wide variety of community organizations. This allows Northwest Center’s team to recruit talented individuals from a diverse network of organizations, assess candidates through a working simulation interview and support them throughout with a 90-day retention plan with an embedded job coach at the local business site. In 2016, Northwest Center placed 40 individuals in permanent, part-time positions both in Kent, WA and Kirkland, WA.
We have seen incredible successes throughout the Program; our associates demonstrate lower attrition rates, better attendance rates and meet or exceed the productivity and quality rates of the business site average. Northwest Center job coaches support candidates to expand their roles, with many taking on coveted positions in these fulfillment centers. In addition, as the single point of contact on-site, Northwest Center is a valued resource for management by providing trainings to operational staff on working with people with disabilities and facilitating change around inclusion in the workplace.
Northwest Center’s team is planning for a large program expansion with Seattle-based partners in 2017, including more employment placements in the local area and an expansion of the program to other sites across the U.S. We are incredibly excited to work with communities throughout the country and help catalyze a cultural shift in the manner people with disabilities are valued in the workplace.
This. Is. Big.
Northwest Center is passionate about equal rights, anti-ableism, and full inclusion for people with disabilities. Thank you for reading.