The Accessibility Tick Programme is a membership programme to help organisations along their journeys to becoming more accessible and inclusive employers. Designed by Access Advisors, the Programme’s main objectives are:
- To help member organisations be actively inclusive of people with disabilities as employees and customers.
- To help member employers place people with disabilities in positions that are successful for both employer and employee.
Programme benefits and cost
The cost of membership for employers in the Accessibility Tick Programme is $7,000 NZD (plus GST) per year and includes the following benefits:
- Membership in the Accessibility Tick Employers Network (ATEN)
- Annual high-level assessment/gap analysis and report
- Help creating objectives and an action plan to achieve them
- Advice on best practice and setting standards
- Support for managers and team leaders implementing action plans
- 2 disability confidence training workshops facilitated by an industry expert (presently Selwyn Cook, Workbridge Employer Ambassador)
- Training modules for management and personnel to achieve best practice
- Access to resources, guidance material and training modules in the members-only ATEN section of the Accessibility Tick website
- Support with implementing new policies and practices
- Invitations to ATEN events throughout the year including an annual ATEN Chief Executives lunch hosted by Workbridge.
- Discounted rates on additional consulting services and support from Access Advisors
Helping you find and retain talent
We share with our disability sector partners the job types and skills that our members need so that our partners can prepare their clients. We connect member employers with our partners who provide them with candidates and placement support.
Designed for and with you
We don’t believe in a one size fits all approach. All of our services are bespoke. We co-design this with you so that it meets the needs of your organisation.
The Programme in detail
Nine accessibility competencies
Successful organisations have systems in place to manage different facets of their business such as quality, environmental and health and safety. The Accessibility Tick Programme uses an accessibility management system to help organisations understand, benchmark and improve disability confidence to better meet the needs of customers and employees with accessibility needs. The accessibility management system has 9 areas of competency.
The 9 areas of competency are:
This is about the organisation’s visible top-down commitment to continuous improvement on their accessibility and inclusion journey. This commitment will be reflected in policies, procedures and in practice.
- Physical Environments
This is about commitment to providing built environments that are physically accessible when it is practical in your business cycle to do so. We are not expecting you to retrofit all of your sites now, however we do expect that member organisations will consider accessibility with any future builds, leases or renovations of their premises.
- Recruitment and Selection
This competency is about having fair and equitable recruitment and selection practices that are inclusive of all, including people with accessibility needs. We help you get this right, so you can encourage candidates with accessibility needs to apply for jobs with your organisation and support them through the recruitment process.
- Employer Support/ Workplace Adjustments
Employer support is a very broad category. It includes processes for requesting workplace adjustments, providing reasonable adjustments, processes for supporting workers’ mental health, processes for supporting workers to return to work after injury, illness or other incapacity, processes for supporting aging workers and health and safety considerations.
- Communication and Marketing
This competency helps you make sure your internal and external communications and marketing are accessible to all employees, customers and other stakeholders.
- Products and Services
With nearly 1 in 4 New Zealander’s identifying with having an accessibility need, if your organisation is not considering accessibility and inclusion in the products and services that you deliver to customers, you could be missing out on a large share of the market. A great example of this is the 2016 Click Away Pound Survey which found inaccessible websites costs UK retailers 11.75 billion pounds in 2015 alone. This competency is about helping you ensure your organisation is capable of serving the entire community.
- Information Communication Technology
This competency is about ensuring your organisation’s ICT including hardware, software and online environments are accessible for people with access needs wherever possible. Where it is not possible to be fully accessible, alternative solutions are provided.
- Career Development
This competency is about supporting employees with accessibility needs in their career development so they have equal opportunities to progress their careers as their non-disabled peers.
- Suppliers and Partners
This competency is really two-fold. First it helps you ensure that the goods and services that your organisation procures from your suppliers won’t inadvertently create accessibility issues. Secondly, it is about encouraging your suppliers and partners to mirror your commitment to accessibility and inclusion.
Each of these competencies were chosen to align with International best practice. Such as the UK Disability Forum – Disability Standard and the Australian Network on Disability (AND) – Access and Inclusion Index.
Steps in the Programme
- We complete a gap analysis of all 9 competencies and provide you with a report and recommendations for improvement.
- You identify where you want to start and we help you develop long term objectives and a short term (12 month) action plan in line with recommendations from the gap analysis report.
- Your organisation starts taking meaningful steps to implement the action plan. We will be there to support you via phone or email along the way.
- We check in with you quarterly with face to face meetings to see how you are progressing with the action plan, review how things are going and help you make any adjustments as necessary.
- At the end of the year (12-month period), we do another assessment/review and start the cycle over.
The Accessibility Tick
The Accessibility Tick gives public recognition of an organisation’s ongoing commitment to becoming accessible and inclusive for employees and customers with disabilities.
How do employers achieve the Accessibility Tick?
To achieve the Accessibility Tick the first year, member employers need to show commitment to accessibility and inclusion and start making meaningful steps towards becoming more accessible and inclusive. We would require visible commitment from the top down that has been communicated throughout the organisation.
We do not expect organisations to have fully achieved in all of the areas in order to get the tick the first year, but we do expect a commitment (at CEO or MD level) to accessibility in all 9 competencies and that they have started taking meaningful steps towards their accessibility journey. The reason behind our method is that we want organisations to commit and start the journey. If we held back the tick until they had fully achieved in all areas, most employers would put this in the “too hard” basket and give up. Ultimately, we want to close the disability employment gap, but we can’t do it without engaged employers! The sooner we can get their engagement and get them started on the journey, the better.
Keeping the Tick
At the end of each year, we do another assessment and review the progress you’ve made on your action plan for the year. To maintain the tick, you need to show continual improvement. You need to keep moving forward in your accessibility journey without moving backwards in any of the competencies.