Since around seven and a half million working age people in the UK have a disability, it’s reasonable to expect the workplace to consist of diverse teams, and for companies to make workplace adjustments necessary to widen their talent pool and secure the best candidates for recruitment and retention.
Consequently, some companies have, signed up to the government’s disability confident employer scheme which is designed to help employers recruit inclusively and not miss out on the skills and talent available in previously under-represented groups. It is designed to encourage employers to recruit and retain disabled people and those with health conditions.
This means that some companies have changed their approach by adapting their processes and established set-ups of recruitment and retention to aid inclusivity.
Though this takes time, currently, around 8,300 companies have engaged in a recruitment and retention of disabled people programme by signing up to the Disability Confident ‘Committed ‘level.
A further 3,200 companies have moved up from that to ‘Employer’ level, where they must take action to deliver on the commitment, while approximately 200 companies have reached ‘Leader’ status. This means that they demonstrate to employees, customers, and communities the positive influence of having a diverse and inclusive workforce.
Companies obviously have to take physical steps and adjustments to provide better accessibility options and workplace availability to cater for disabled employees – and have a clear and consistent core message ingrained throughout the organisation.
Rather than being compelled to act however, it would obviously be more desirable for companies to take a proactive approach to inclusivity.
For those who have, the results have been overwhelmingly positive as they gain the best staff, change behaviours and cultures in their own businesses, networks and communities, and reap the benefits of inclusive recruitment practices.