Disability in the Workplace
Did you know that there are over 828,000 people aged 18 or over with a learning disability?
If your business and recruitment process is not inclusive and accessible for people with learning disabilities, you could be missing out on hiring some extremely talented candidates. Equality and Diversity should be integral to the workplace whether you are a small business or have hundreds of members of staff.
Let’s discuss this further…
Why is having a diverse workplace important?
Having a diverse workplace is something that every business should aspire to have.
Firstly, it creates an environment that is tolerant and accepting of people from all different backgrounds and life experiences. By doing this, both the business and other employees can broaden their own perspective, learn more from others, and take all opinions into account when making business decisions.
This means that any decisions made ensure that the whole customer or client base are taken into consideration, not just those with a specific background. Employing people with learning disabilities or other neurodiversity ensures that business decisions are relevant to the wider population and not just those who do not have a learning disability.
What more can businesses do to be more accessible?
No matter what, an employee will only be the best they can be with the right support. People with learning disabilities might require extra support during the recruitment process but by not making reasonable adjustments you could be missing out on a lot of potential candidates who will bring a whole new perspective to your organisation. In order to remain inclusive, here are a few things we recommend:
Create a user-friendly application process. Make sure that you keep your wording simple, avoid jargon and be clear about the essential requirements of the role. For example, ‘Have a UK driving license’ is becoming a common requirement however, be sure that it is fully necessary for the role.
Be open about how your business is approaching hiring people with a disability to encourage people to be honest throughout the hiring process.
Make sure that your website is accessible. Add alt text to all of your images to ensure that those with learning disabilities can fully research and understand your business. This means they can be best prepared for the interview similar to other people.
Ask a Learning Disability organisation for help to support candidates and employees with Learning Disabilities.
Royal Mencap has recently released an episode with Morning Live to discuss the importance of delivering Learning Disability Awareness sessions to employers as well as why hiring someone with a learning disability can benefit your business.
You can check it out here: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000nxkq