There are many disabled people in the UK who are looking for work, but it can be difficult to find a job that is disability-inclusive. This means that the employer has made specific efforts to create a workplace that is welcoming and accommodating for disabled employees.
Luckily, there are ways to identify disability-inclusive employers. This blog post will discuss what these methods are and why they are so important.
Why Look for Disability-Friendly Employers
All companies should strive to be accessible and inclusive to all, however, disability-friendly employers often go the extra mile. It is important to identify disability-inclusive employers because they create a happier work environment for disabled employees.
Disabled employees who work in an inclusive environment are more likely to be satisfied with their job and feel like they belong. You are also more likely to stay in your job for a longer period of time. Additionally, disabled employees who work in an inclusive environment are more productive and have less absenteeism.
While not all companies are as supportive as they should be, disability-friendly employers are more likely to already have the knowledge and infrastructure necessary for you to thrive from the get-go.
What are Disability-Friendly Employers?
Disability-inclusive employers are those who have made specific accommodations to create a workplace that is welcoming and accommodating for disabled employees. This includes accessible software and technology such as screen-reading software, as well as physical accommodations such as disabled parking and wheelchair-accessible bathrooms.
Additionally, many disability-inclusive employers also have policies in place that support disabled employees, such as flexible work hours and work from home options.
How Do I Find Them?
Careers with Disabilities
Careers with Disabilities understands that it can be difficult for disabled jobseekers to easily understand which employers are disability-friendly.
We want to help remove this barrier by showcasing employers that are committed to the inclusion of disabled people in their workforce. You can find a list of disability-friendly employers in our Company Profiles page.
We also recommend visiting the Careers with Disabilities jobs board where you can find the latest job vacancies from our network of disability friendly employers.
Disability Confident Scheme
The Disability Confident Scheme is an initiative organised by the Department of Work and Pensions. The aim is to support employers becoming more accessible and inclusive to disabled people. You can access a full list of employers that have signed up to the scheme. Look out for the Disability Confident accreditation on job adverts which demonstrates the organisation is part of the Scheme.
There are three levels to the Scheme: Committed, Employer and Leader. Organisations at all levels have made a commitment to recruit, retain and develop disabled people in their workforce. However, organisations at the higher two levels (Employer and Leader) are actively doing so.
If you choose to work at an organisation that is part of the Disability Confident Scheme, you should feel assured that they are welcoming, accepting and supportive of disabled people in their workforce.
Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Policies
Most large enterprises and all public-sector organisations will hold an equality, diversity and inclusion policy. It is often easy to find these policies on the organisation’s website or careers website.
An equality, diversity and inclusion policy sets out how the business is inclusive to people from diverse, marginalised and underrepresented groups. Creating working policies and practices that support the representation of diverse groups is an integral part of an organisation’s social responsibility.
Reading these policies will help you to understand how the business supports disabled people in the workplace. You may also find out if they offer a guaranteed interview to disabled candidates that meet the minimum requirements for the role.
A great way to find out how an organisation is supportive of their disabled workers is to look for first-hand experience. One method of gaining first-hand insight is through reaching out to employees of the organisation via LinkedIn. Most people will be happy to share their experiences to help you make an informed decision about joining the company.
For further support on finding a career that suits your disability, have a read of our disability advice hub, and visit our disabled jobs board for opportunities with inclusive employers in the UK.