Skip Navigation
Close-up of faces of four people in a business meeting. All appear to be in discussion while looking down at the same object.
Benefits and OpportunitiesEmployer ToolkitTestimonialsADA OverviewBusiness ResourcesEmployer Etiquette

Case Studies

Golden Key Award Recipient

Smead Manufacturing

The hiring practices of Smead Manufacturing have made employment opportunities available for individuals with significant disabilities. They have examined their work demands and identified work that could be done by individuals with significant disabilities. Over the past year, Smead has hired 35 individuals from the Danville Employment Program. Their work assignment is to package file folder tabs that are then inserted into boxes prior to distribution.

To prepare for a successful experience for both supervisors and the new employees, Smead brought in a local psychologist to conduct a group seminar and discussed topics such as how to communicate, accept, and supervise individuals with significant disabilities. This activity set the groundwork for a successful endeavor for both the company and the new employees.

All employees are invited to the company parties, outings, and employee meetings. A special occasion day was designated as “Danville Day” and was enjoyed by all employees. It provided an opportunity for able-bodied and people with disabilities to get to know each other better. They continually reward departments for meeting their goals and ensuring a safe work environment. In January they rewarded the Danville crew for sorting over 20 million folders and gave each of them a $20 gift certificate. These are just a few examples of Smead’s efforts to inte-grate and recognize their employees with disabilities. One employee wrote, “I enjoy working with the entire crew at Smead. They make me feel like I am wanted and appreciated.”