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Grainger Case Study, June 2017

Grainger is a business-to-business, Fortune 500 industrial supply company based in Chicago, Illinois. Grainger joined the USBLN Going for the Gold (GFG) Program in 2014, and like all GFG companies, Grainger was interested in creating a disability inclusive culture and meeting compliance requirements. The company identified a cross-functional team to implement the GFG Program with representatives from Inclusion and Diversity, Talent Acquisition, and Compliance/Team Member Experience and direction from Grainger’s VP of Global Talent & Corporate Functions.

Understanding that Talent Acquisition is the gateway to employment, the GFG team trained all of Grainger’s Talent Acquisition staff, including contractors, on disability etiquette, sourcing and interviewing candidates with disabilities. The training sessions were opened by the Vice President, Global Talent Acquisition and Inclusion & Diversity, and the Manager of Inclusion and Diversity, to highlight Grainger’s commitment to an inclusive workforce at the organization’s highest levels. Training for both talent acquisition and other Human Resources partners was repeated in June 2017.

The GFG team with Grainger created relationships with sourcing organizations, trained staff and sourced candidates for targeted distribution centers (DCs). The GFG team invited sourcing partners from the local areas to participate in the initial meetings and tours of the DCs so that an immediate connection was made between the sourcing partners and the DC staff. Partners were carefully selected and a preparatory phone conversation was required before the DC visits.

The company also forged a strong relationship with the University of Illinois’ Career Center. To further strengthen this relationship, the GFG with Grainger team created a connection between the campus Disability Resources and Education Services and Grainger’s University Relations team. This resulted in an on-campus meeting facilitated by a GFG team member and the recruitment of U of I students with disabilities.

Grainger’s outcomes include:

  • A strengthening of disability inclusion policies and practices across Grainger’s corporate footprint;
  • Ongoing training of its Talent Acquisition and Human Resources team;
  • Since 2014, Grainger has hired more than 200 team members with disabilities; and
  • A 167% improvement in Grainger’s USBLN Disability Equality Index (DEI) score over 3 years.