Differently abled workers are a necessary part of our industry.
People all over the world are becoming increasingly aware of the importance of inclusion in the workforce.
If you’re a business owner committed to more inclusive hiring practices, you’ve made a great choice.
Companies that hire differently abled workers are contributing to a more inclusive society.
Plus, research shows they experience reduced turnover, increased employee loyalty, and enhanced profits.
So today, we explore exactly how you can make your workplace more attractive for the differently abled.
Revamp your workplace
The first step is to ensure your workplace is accessible for all. This could include practical modifications like adding a wheelchair-accessible bathroom.
Also, look into assistive technology and be prepared to implement it for future employees as needed.
Examples include braille keyboards, speech recognition software, assistive listening devices, and screen reader software.
Make sure to create a budget for such tech going forward.
Create an inclusive culture
Creating a workplace that’s welcoming of differently abled people isn’t just about making physical changes to your office space.
You also need to make cultural changes. Business News Daily explains how to promote a culture of belonging starting from the top down.
Talk to your leadership team about creating a safe space for all employees.
For example, offering seminars on inclusivity and developing anti-bias communication materials are great steps.
Consider flexible working arrangements
Offering more flexible working arrangements is another way to enhance inclusivity.
When possible, give workers the opportunity to work from home at least part of the time.
This can be a big draw for those who struggle with mobility issues, making it easier for them to participate since they don’t have to commute.
Flex hours are another way you can promote inclusivity and build a culture of trust.
Reconsider your benefits
Also, think about the benefits you offer your workers. How can you restructure these to better cater to differently abled persons?
More comprehensive healthcare benefits including mental healthcare are one example.
You might also consider implementing programs for differently abled workers, like internship initiatives, or establishing disability partnerships with organizations like The National Business Disability Council.
Offer career support through continuing education
Another perk you can offer your employees is career planning and development.
Providing funding for continuing education is a great way to show that you are committed to your workers’ success in the big picture.
Whether they’re earning a bachelor’s, master’s, or doctorate degree, online degree programs are a great option, as they allow people to study on their own time while they work.
Tweak your job ads
Putting the perks and processes in place that cater to differently abled workers is a start. However, you still need to attract those workers.
Revamp your job ads, making sure to highlight any benefits or incentives for the differently abled.
You might also want to add an inclusion statement to your ad. Further, consider getting more flexible about your hiring process.
For example, video interviews can be useful for candidates with mobility issues.
Look beyond the company
If you really want to cater to an inclusive workforce, don’t stop with what’s happening within your company’s four walls.
Think bigger. Find causes that you can contribute your time and money to that promote diversity and inclusion.
This can also be a great way to bring together your company behind a movement, solidifying your corporate values.
For example, you might get employees to participate in volunteer opportunities together.
The global workforce is increasingly embracing inclusivity and diversity. As a business owner, you can help support this trend.
By creating an accessible office, funding continuing education, rethinking your benefits, and allowing people to work from home, your business can attract differently abled workers.
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