Sponsored by Sumitomo Life Insurance Company
On the one hand, in the US, Japan and Singapore alone, over 700,000 companies struggle to hire PWDs into their workforce. On the other hand, there are at least 1.2 million PWDs who have the passion, capability and skills to work but do not have jobs. Today, the unemployment rate of PWDs stands at approximately 70-90 percent. Companies across countries struggle to find the right PWD job candidates, create a safe and sound work environment for them, and retain those talent.
Background & Existing Approach
Diversity is no longer a nice-to-have – it is an obligation. Regulators and investors around the world are demanding corporations to harness inclusivity for better performance. For example, the Japanese government has placed a quota of 2.2 percent of overall workforce to be PWDs. However, only half the companies have achieved the quota.
Traditional recruitment agencies alone cannot solve the issue. There are close to 200 recruitment agencies that cater to the PWD segment in Japan but they lack the expertise and deep understanding of the needs and requirements of PWDs because their main business is focused on candidates without disabilities. Because PWDs are generally segregated from the communities throughout their lives, people without disabilities struggle to empathise, relate to, and offer practical solutions to the problems PWDs face.
We aim to establish a first-ever PWD-focused co-working space which offers physically and psychologically safe and sound environment with universally accessible design. Using our two-sided platform connecting the companies who hire PWDs and PWDs who are eligible to work, companies can efficiently and effectively find right PWD job candidates and let PWDs work from our co-working space, thereby saving time and cost to renovate their office to cater to the needs of the PWDs. For PWDs, we will offer an accurate assessment of their capabilities and help present them to potential employers in a convincing manner.
As a trial, this co-working space will first focus on physically disabled job candidates who are versed in IT, art and design.
Impact We Aim to Achieve
A co-working space dedicated for PWDs is a first-ever approach to addressing the difficulties of having PWDs in the workforce. Our digital platform is an efficient and scalable solution to the vast problem we face in employing PWDs. Not only do we help companies achieve their PWD employment quota but also help them cherish and appreciate contributions of PWD workers.
Partners Wanted for Trial Run Sep 2019
We aim to test a small co-working space dedicated for PWDs in Singapore in September 2019. We will also be looking to partner with technology companies to develop a two-sided platform. If you are passionate about making a difference for the companies and PWDs and meet any of the below requirement, please get in touch with us.
Get in Touch with Us
Contact us by 31 July 2019 if you are interested to work with us.
Mike Momota | 百田 牧人
Head of Digital Innovation Lab Tokyo, Sumitomo Life Insurance Company