Untapped pool of talent

News team

Our new guide — ‘Talented people aren’t always where you expect to find them’ — provides employers with top tips on how to recruit disabled people and ensure they can reach their full potential.

This spring, we spoke to employers about what has worked and what they feel could be done better to attract and support disabled employees.

One of those companies was Millwood Servicing Ltd — a family run and owned small business based in Surrey.

Millwood Servicing Ltd

Millwood Servicing specialised in all aspects of fire safety engineering and fire risk assessments.

The company wasn’t actively seeking to recruit disabled people. But when they recruited a couple of people with disabilities they soon realised they could be missing out on an untapped pool of talent.

Openess, honesty and fairness

The company’s philosophy is based on openness, honesty, work-life balance and fairness.

They communicate this from the very start at recruitment stage to encourage potential recruits to be open about any adjustments they might need.

In second interview they are open about their HR practices, sick pay and adjustments they offer. They feel this encourages people to share their access needs, if they have any.

‘We have two employees with serious invisible illnesses.

‘With their agreement, we decided to share a video with the rest of the company which provided information about the impact of the conditions on people’s lives.

‘This helped other employees understand why sometimes it was necessary for them to leave early, for example.’

Checking in

All managers are entrusted to plan any adjustments their employees may have, in partnership with the individual. Managers will then conduct regular reviews to check the employee is continuing to have all their adjustment needs met so they are able to do their job well.

Adjustments are wide and varied. It could be something simple like letting the individual work around their hospital appointments, changing their responsibilities slightly or allowing them to finish early.

Another example would be trying to arrange it so those with a physical disability only work on jobs which will take them a short while to drive to, to help them manage their energy.

Read our guide for employers

We want more employers to be like Matthew from Millwood Servicing, which is why we've launched our employer's guide.