Guidant Global take practical steps to inclusion
Emma Buckley, Talent Attraction and Acquisition Manager from Guidant Global, tells the #WorkWithMe community about her experiences of supporting her company in becoming an inclusive employer.
Why did you sign the #WorkWithMe pledge?
Guidant Global signed the #WorkWithMe pledge as it offered us the opportunity to not only take further steps in become a more inclusive employer, but also the chance to learn more about improving attraction, employment and progression of disabled talent within our organisation, as well as sharing our journey with other companies.
When we first embarked on our inclusive journey, we had a couple of challenges. How were we going to make ourselves visible as an attractive employer to disabled talent? And once employed by us, how could we support them and promote further opportunities for career development and progression?
We started off by making our website accessible by using Recite Me, an assistive software that allows website visitors to experience the site in a way that works for them. Our application stage also clearly emphasised offering a guarantee on interviews for disabled talent. In line with that, unconscious bias training was rolled out to all hiring managers and we adopted a strengths-based interview approach.
Our commitment as a Disability Confident Leader, a partner with the Business Disability Forum and RIDI, also meant that the #WorkWithMe pledge would further support us in giving disabled talent the extra reassurance that we’re committed to upholding and leading the way on accessible and inclusive employment opportunities.
What advice would you give to other businesses that want to be more inclusive of disabled people?
The most important factor in making a business inclusive is ensuring that the work environment is a place where everyone is treated fairly, with respect, and that all employees have equal access to opportunities to progress and contribute to the company’s success. That’s we’ve got an internal D&I employee-led ambassador group that focuses specifically on raising the awareness of disabilities in the workplace.
While there are many ways a business can commence its inclusivity journey, ultimately, you need the buy-in and support at the senior level, with hiring managers and HR collaborating to ensure that everyone understands the common goal. Diversity always brings about more competitive skills, so it’s important that companies start thinking about the initiatives that can drive their own commitment to inclusive hiring.
Websites need to be accessible, your blogs and stories on supporting the disabled workforce needs to be told, and you need to develop and deliver content which creates awareness without tokenism. Candidates need to feel encouraged and confident to make an application, so assess your business to see what you can do to demonstrate your proof points and shout about efforts in this area.
Create case studies and surveys to try and recognise people in your business that may have a disability or may want to talk about it. Look at your locations, accessibility and take risk assessments. I truly believe that these crucial foundations must in place first before you can start advertising on disability job boards or trying to encourage applications.
Schemes like Disability Confident are great to sign up to as well as other disability specific companies or partnerships with charities, so use social media and other networking opportunities to develop partnerships with organisations and job boards who can support you on your journey towards inclusive hiring.
What do you want to gain from joining the #WorkWithMe community?
#WorkWithMe is a great example of an initiative that can help to demonstrate a business’s commitment to diversity and inclusion. At Guidant, we’re looking forward to meeting like-minded companies, learning and sharing best practice, and ultimately, bringing more disabled talent to our organisation and into the wider world of work!
Find out more about our current vacancies at Guidant Global.