All businesses have a responsibility to make jobs as accessible as possible to disabled candidates, but many fall short. If your business isn't as disabled-friendly as it could be, then you're hurting yourself as well as potential applicants. Failure to cater to disabled staff members means you miss out on loads of excellent candidates, and you could risk falling foul of local discrimination laws. Follow the tips below to ensure that everyone has an equal opportunity when it comes to working at your business.
Make reasonable adjustments during applications
Providing reasonable adjustments during the job application process will make your company much more attractive to disabled employees. The type of adjustments you make will depend on the applicant. For example, an applicant with sight difficulties may need assistance in filling out their application form, while a deaf candidate may require a sign language translator to be present during their interview. When it comes to physical difficulties, you may need to adjust the location of an interview - for example, move it from upstairs to a ground floor room.
Provide disabled parking
Providing disabled parking is a must, regardless of whether or not you currently have any disabled employees. Parking that is close to your building and provides plenty of space between cars makes it much easier for disabled clients and job applicants to access your premises. Once an employee is hired, you should make sure that there is always a space available for them. This is particularly important in car parks that are shared between multiple businesses, as use will vary from day to day. Providing reserved parking spaces for all of your disabled employees ensures that they will never have any trouble getting to work.
Install ramps and lifts
Where possible, your entire building should be accessible by wheelchair, with no areas that are off-limits. In older buildings where this may not be viable, you should still aim to make as much of the building accessible as possible, and make sure that your disabled employees will never be disadvantaged by not being able to get to certain areas. Ramps are the best option when it comes to outdoor steps, while wheelchair lifts may be more appropriate indoors, particularly in small spaces. You should also provide regular lifts that are large enough to fit a wheelchair to enable employees to access all floors. Installing handrails is also useful, particularly if there is any uneven ground in your location.