Example reasonable adjustments

Understanding how to support your employees and knowing what is a reasonable adjustment is not always easy

Our resource aims to give you ideas of reasonable adjustments that you could offer at different stages of the employment journey
Recruiting
  • Offer the opportunity to complete the application form over the phone instead of paper based or online
  • Provide one point of contact for neurodivergent applications to avoid them having to speak to different people each time they have a query during the recruitment process
  • Offer job trials instead of applications and interviews
  • Do informal discussions as opposed to interviews, do a walk and talk chat and get to the know the person whilst showing them around as opposed to a formal setting
  • Provide interview questions up front
  • Avoid group interviews
Onboarding
  • Ensure a single point of contact, a direct email or a direct phone number to reduce anxiety
  • Keep the person in touch with what is happening, check in weekly to ensure they know where you are up to
  • Invite the person in for an informal chat and pre-start visit to the workplace – give them chance to see the environment and place they will be working in advance to help them adapt
  • Offer a meeting to talk about reasonable adjustments PRIOR to the person starting with you
  • Break information down, do not send lots of information at once. If there is a lot of information, offer to go through it with the person or offer for them to come in and go through it before starting
Introducing to the workplace
  • Provide a buddy or mentor to give the individual someone to go to if they need to ask questions
  • Offer a phased start to allow them to adapt to the new role and new environment where suitable
  • Break the induction down over a longer period, try not to cram too much learning into a short period as this will overload many neurodivergent adults
  • Provide regular check in catch-up where the individual has the opportunity to ask any questions privately of anything they need more guidance with
  • Provide written summaries of information in writing following meetings with key points highlighted
Ongoing support
  • Remember that many neurodivergent adults mask their emotions, just because they seem okay for the first few weeks, do not remove the support meetings and adjustments you have put in place – more often than not the individual is okay because they know the support is there even if they are not always using it. it is reassuring to have a safety net in place.
  • Think about desk positioning, if you use hot desking, consider providing a fixed desk space for neurodivergent colleagues to reduce anxiety
  • Provide regular catch-up to keep checking in – the often used situation of my door is always open theory does not work well for neurodivergent adults as there are so many unwritten rules with this, when is appropriate, worrying about interrupting or being a burden. Ensure the individual has a dedicated time to come and talk to you, even if there is little to talk about – having that option is reassuring enough for many
Consider external support
  • Our team provides ongoing coaching and mentoring through our access to work programme where we can provide weekly appointments with your employee to help them develop strategies for the workplace and reduce anxiety, this support can also help you as an employer to better understand the needs of your employee. Contact our team to setup an initial discussion employmentsupport@autismplus.co.uk 
Find out more about our access to work programme and how we can support your employee
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