Having employees from a wide variety of cultures and backgrounds and with different abilities can greatly benefit your business, big and small. But how do you attract new hires with autism, neurodivergence, or disabilities to create a more diverse and inclusive workplace where various viewpoints and experiences merge together? Here are six ways you can promote inclusion and build a stronger workforce within your company, courtesy ofSourceAbled.
Create a Culture of Inclusion
Make everyone feel welcome and valued within your organization byshowing respect to everyone, no matter their place on the corporate ladder or their abilities. Allow everyone to bring up new ideas or voice concerns without fear of ridicule or retaliation. Companies that listen to different perspectives are often more innovative and successful than businesses where employees don’t feel like they have a place at the table.
Make Your Business ADA-Compliant
For people using wheelchairs to get around, creating an office environment where they can safely navigate from room to room is a must. Make sure your company is ADA-compliant by providing parking spaces and curb ramps foremployees with limited mobility, doors that are large enough to accommodate wheelchairs, with access switches or push buttons for automatic opening, slip-resistant floors, handicap-accessible desks, and wheelchair-accessible bathrooms.
Implement the Use of Assistive Devices
You can make your employees with autism, neurodivergence, and disabilities feel more welcome by implementing solutions to make their work easier at the office.Voice recognition software, screen readers, closed captioning, screen enlargement applications, and other assistive technologies and programs can be installed on team members’ computers to allow them to perform their tasks more effectively. Adaptive pencil handles, grips, and holders can also be used for team members that could benefit from fine motor skill assistance.
Offer Continuing Education and Career Planning Opportunities
There are many options for online learning that could benefit employees with autism, neurodivergence, and disabilities by allowing them to study from home and at their own pace. Encouraging your employees to take online classes, for instance, may help them to bridge skill gaps and gain the experience needed to be promoted within your organization. By subsidizing your team members’ continuing education, you’llfoster their buy-in and engagementin your business.
Keep Your Business in Compliance With the State
Keep your company in good standing by following all rules and regulations in effect for the state you're operating in. Failure to do so may lead to fines, penalties, and even the loss of your business. Make sure youmeet your state’s income tax withholding requirementsand obtain an EIN (Employer Identification Number), so you can set up a payroll system and complete transactions with employees. You’ll be able to offer your hires a retirement plan, which is an attractive perk for many workers.
Promote Your Business to Your Community
Next, don’t forget to advertise! Luckily, there are tools to help with this, as well. For instance, in addition to spreading the word via social media, you might want to try a time-tested approach like brochures, which can make a more tactile, lasting impression. If you aren’t sure where to start,give this tool a tryand take advantage of the free templates!
Create More Work From Home Positions
With so manyonline collaboration tools and platformsavailable for businesses of all industries and sizes, it is easier than ever to offer remote positions to people who may not otherwise be able to participate in office life due to a disability or workplace sensory concerns. There are many office and administrative tasks that can be executed from anywhere: accounting, invoicing, payroll, marketing and advertising, customer support, recruiting and HR are just a few of themany roles that can be filled remotely.
Creating an inclusive and diverse workforce and ensuring everyone feels included and respected will lead to business growth and higher employee retention. When employers provide their employees with the tools, accommodations, and assistive technologies they need to succeed in the workplace, they communicate that they care about the wellbeing and success of their employees. The input of diverse employees can be an invaluable asset for your company and for all your team members.
If you’re looking to create a setting where talent is valued and empowered,SourceAbledcan help! If you have anyquestions, we’d love to hear from you.