Most reputable employers recognise the value of diversity in the workplace and actively recruit diverse workforces. They are aware this is the most effective way of securing a broad skill set within their employee base that will reflect the diversity found amongst their clients or target markets.
The Disability Equality Duty, which came into effect on 4 December 2006, further places the onus upon employers not to discriminate and to be able to demonstrate that they are being pro-active in ensuring disabled applicants and employees are attracted to their organisation and can progress and succeed throughout their career.
Whilst most employers recruit positively there are ways to help identify some employers who are particularly keen to attract applications from disabled candidates. Things to look out for include:
- Equal opportunities policy statement on company websites
- Profiles of disabled employees on website or company literature
- Evidence of commitment to equal opportunities on recruitment material (including offer of adjustment to materials at application stage and requests for information about adjustments needed to enable optimum performance during the recruitment process or in the workplace)
- Employers who have signed up to be recognised as 'Disability Confident' employers
It is important, however, to note that just because an employer does not appear to demonstrate the criteria above it does not mean they will not be disability friendly. It is also important to select employers on the basis of what roles they offer, not just because they appear explicitly disability friendly.
To be recognised as Disability confident employers must agree to the Disability Confident commitments.
The commitments are:
- inclusive and accessible recruitment
- communicating vacancies
- offering an interview to disabled people
- providing reasonable adjustments
- supporting existing employees.