Disability diversity within the workplace proved to be a huge factor in increased productivity. Workers with disabilities were found to be more effective in the workforce than those who are their opposite. Although not in general, the difference is quite noticeable.
So, what really drives companies that utilise disability diversity toward better performance?
For one, it increases the figure of suitable candidates to fill the gaps of vacated positions by workers who were terminated due to lackadaisical performance. Retaining and recruiting persons with disabilities takes up the space left by a shrinking and aging workforce.
Next, it reflects a wider customer base. As we all know, not all customers are in perfect condition. It is in some specific imperfections that workers with disabilities can be of help. If a customer has hearing impairment, an employee with this type of disability is fast at understanding what the need is by using sign language.
Furthermore, diverse companies are able to boost their productivity phases using a wide assortment of talents. This is due to varying strengths or experiences these people put on the table. Companies designed to hire these individuals will not run out of fresh ideas. With this said, development and progress are not far behind.
With this said, companies may use the best techniques available to lessen disability diversity within the working environment. Below are the top five strategies used by big companies worldwide for a barrier-free organization.
5 Techniques that Promote Disability Diversity in the Workplace
- Audit Accessibility and Develop an Action Plan
Start with a checklist to assess policies and procedures, disability diversity and training. This helps in identifying dark areas or focus points that require changes. From there, an accurate structure for improvement can be laid down.
Considering the types of visible disabilities is crucial but don’t fail to overlook the hidden issues. This action plan will serve as a guide and boost awareness of what needs to be done, accessibility-wise.
Make this plan as a guiding principle to look after the welfare of the other fraction of the workforce. Refer to the AHRC website to see if you have missed something.
- Understand the Company’s Legal Roles and Responsibilities
Employers have various legal roles to perform and there are accompanying responsibilities not only for regular workers. These include workers who have disabilities, too. Let the company legal advisor go over them thoroughly to be fully aware of the entire scenario.
Take a look at:
- Equal Employment Opportunity and Equal Opportunity Act 2010
- Premises standards/Accessibility Guidelines
- Reasonable Adjustment/Flexible Work Provisions
- Workers’ Compensation corresponding to Federal, state, and Commonwealth laws
- Special National Minimum Wages and Supported Wage Systems for workers with disabilities
- Use Modifications on Facilities within the Premises
Those who have disabilities and work in an office setting should be given access to an environment considered safe for their limitations. If the organization thinks that there are more things that can be done to provide accessibility, then, they should start looking at:
- Parking spots
- Toilets and bathrooms
- Physical office or building layout
- Staircases and pathways
- Digital access
- Room accommodations in times of official business trips
- Give Emphasis on Training
Training, as well as support, are two important factors that alleviate the lives of persons with disabilities within the workplace. Creating training programs involving interaction with those who have disabilities is highly essential. Draft anti-discrimination policies and ensure that disability diversity is highlighted on a regular basis.
Train managers, team leaders, or supervisors who have workers with disabilities within their ranks. The purpose of this is to make the majority, if not all, of the processes more manageable. It is also a good idea for HR personnel to work hand in hand with Disability Employment Services. This makes sure smooth handling of these types of employees are in place.
- Employment Assistance Fund
The purpose of the Employment Assistance Fund or EAF, is made available to workers with disabilities. It includes those who are planning to enter an organization, presently working, or those aspiring to work. It also covers the self-employed and others requiring Auslan assistance, as well as needing special work equipment for work.
There is a free workplace assessment provided by the EAF. This is for eligible workers who work from eight hours every week for a period of 13 weeks. This process which can either be initiated by the employer or employee. This helps create a better organisation thanks to utilising disability diversity across working environments.