COMPANY CULTURE / AUG. 05, 2013
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Dealing With Disability in the Workplace

Many companies understand that people with disabilities are hard working, reliable and productive employees who bring numerous benefits to the company. Diversity in the workplace is paramount to a successful working environment and many companies are extremely proactive in hiring people with disabilities and integrating them into the workplace.    

Hiring and retention

As a recruiter or hiring manager it is your responsibility to ensure that disabled people are able to successfully integrate into their new surroundings. You will need to have a company policy in place that stipulates your commitment to providing equal opportunities in recruitment and selection, training and development, appraisal and promotion, as well as retirement (where applicable).

In addition you will also need to encourage a discrimination-free environment where equal treatment is given regardless of disability, gender, race, sexual orientation and so on. This can be done in a number of ways, though primarily, it is essential to introduce disability awareness training for employees and managers.

You may also wish to introduce training packages for disabled employees that are aimed at training, hiring and retaining them. Such measures will help to integrate employees who typically find it challenging to enter the workforce.

Accommodating disabled people into the workplace

Bringing disabled people into the workplace begins at the recruitment stage. The first step is to train recruiters on how to successfully interview people with disabilities. This means overlooking ones disability and instead focusing on their qualifications. 

Upon hiring an employee, an assessment should be carried out focusing on their needs, whether by introducing sign language interpretation, captioning services, screen readers, Braille displays, orientation and mobility training, hearing assistance devices, or ramps and power doors. The workplace needs to be as accessible as possible, to ensure a cohesive and holistic environment for all.  

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