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Category: inclusion, Disability Confident, inclusive workplace, Business, Opportunity, sainsburys
Every business wants a diverse workplace providing equal opportunities for everyone to reach their potential. Yet when it comes to disability employment, many organisations and businesses haven’t yet realised the list of benefits that it can bring.
There is a lack of representation of disabled people in organisations in the UK with over 7 million people of working age (17.5%) living with a disability or a health condition. New research also shows that millennials want to work for organisations that state good diversity and inclusion credentials as an important value to the company they will work for. Commercially, the companies that are more diverse do perform better.
80% of people with a disability acquire it while they’re in work. This is easy to imagine considering the nation’s workforce is ageing; meaning health issues will come to affect more workers in the coming years. Skilled employees are an asset to any business, so putting in place programmes and workplace adjustments for people who require support is not only beneficial to the company but also imperative to the wellbeing of the employee. Building an environment where health is prioritised will also help reduce absences as a result of sickness.
At a company like Channel 4, the inclusivity agenda is engrained into the company’s culture; people don’t even think about it. Sainsbury’s are making great strides in building a likeminded inclusive atmosphere where the managers feel they can have development conversations with their colleagues; they’re proactively thinking about how everyone can work better together and build a culture that all colleagues can engage with.
Sainsbury’s also want to encourage productivity by having meaningful conversations in order to ask colleagues with disabilities about their needs. Some may benefit from working flexibly one day a week, or splitting their regular five-hour shift into two of half the length. Others may need further aids like adjustments to their equipment which is covered by the government's Access to Work grants which can pay for all sorts of practical support like making changes to computer screens etc. Often, the small changes can help in a big way in order for a colleague to reach their full potential.
Sainsbury’s colleagues receive training in order to learn how to provide assistance for elderly and disabled customers. They have also tried implementing in-store adjustments to make customers with dementia or autism to continue their shopping comfortably. In addition, Some of Sainsbury’s disabled colleagues have provided valuable information, which has aided the design of the training programmes to give our customers the best experience.
Sainsburys is part of the Business Leaders Group, and is chaired by company secretary Tim Fallowfield which was set up by the government earlier this year to share ideas around disability in employment. This is to discuss the benefits disability employment has brought to our organisations, shared real examples, and to explore how to recruit and retain more disabled people. Sainsbury’s and Tim Fallowfield also encourages other businesses and organisations to provide more opportunities to people by starting the conversation about disability; taking part in the government’s Disability Confident programme and sharing best practice with one another to achieve a more inclusive and accessible organisation for those with a disability.
Are you interested in a career with Sainsburys? Please click here.
Vercida works with over one hundred clients who are committed to creating an inclusive work environment. If you are an employer and interested in working with Vercida to promote your diversity and inclusion initiatives and attract the best candidates, please call 02037405973 or email [email protected] for more information.
We are also officially recommended by Disability Confident as a step on achieving Employer status, please click here for more information.