Often, when executives or human resources (HR) departments consider diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) efforts, the first thing that comes to mind is gender, race, and religion. While DEI efforts should absolutely cover those categories, there also needs to be disability inclusion. 

DEI Effort


Individuals with disabilities can bring a fresh new perspective to the table. Additionally, a recent study by Walgreens found that in spaces where 50% more people have disabilities, productivity was 20% higher. Disability inclusion benefits both the employees and the business.


Wondering how you can improve your DEI practices for individuals with disabilities? The steps below are a good place to start.

Work with a Disability Employment Specialist

If your business does not currently employ anyone with a disability, it may be time to widen your hiring net. A disability employment specialist can help you do this by educating your HR team on recruitment initiatives, proper interview practices, and hiring. 


There are dozens of initiatives and organizations who also work specifically with people who have disabilities in order to give them vocational training as well as resume reviews, hiring tips, and more. Working directly with one of these organizations can make it easier for you to find the right people for your open positions.

Create an Accessible Workplace

Whether your workplace is onsite or completely remote, you need to be sure that you create an environment of accessibility.


For those who are still working in an office (or any other in-person setting), there are a few things that you can do to make the space more friendly for people with disabilities: 


  • Add ramps, elevators, or other ways to directly access the building for people with physical disabilities.
  • Keep aisleways clean and clear of debris. Make sure that the space is also wide enough for people with physical disabilities to maneuver through.
  • If you have an open workspace, provide quiet rooms as well to make it easier for people to concentrate. This is especially important for individuals with sensory processing disorders.


For those that are remote, providing technology and the training to go with it is critical. This might include screen readers, virtual remote interpreters, or specific software. Ask your employees what they need from you to make things more accessible and then be sure to follow through on their requests (as long as they are reasonable).

Train All Employees to be Disability-Friendly

Your organization should be offering regular DEI trainings. Part of these trainings needs to include ways to support fellow employees with disabilities. The more that people are educated and have an understanding about both physical and mental disabilities, the better equipped they are to include individuals who have these disabilities.


If your organization is working on implementing any of these DEI efforts for people with disabilities and could use some guidance, Applied Development can help. We are well-versed in Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance. Additionally, we also offer regular DEI trainings to private businesses in addition to government agencies.


Give us a call today at 410.571.4016 or contact us online to get started.