Headlines: November 5th, 2007

The public sector is performing well according to a benchmark study by the Employer’s Forum on Disability. In the last year it outperformed the private sector by an average of between 4 to 8 per cent. The study also indicates that the public sector is motivated by a duty to promote disability equality while the private sector, without such a duty, recognizes the overall benefits of pursuing equality and is treating it as a business issue.

The results of the Disability Standard 2007 show that on average 56 per cent of public sector organisations have board level responsibility for disability, compared to an average of 43 per cent of private sector respondents. Results also show that 60 per cent of public sector organisations who took part in the Disability Standard have a clear and public commitment to achieving disability equality by senior managers. This compares to 43 per cent of private sector respondents.

The private sector motivation of business benefit shows through in the responses to questions about training and development. An average of 50 per cent of private sector respondents have effective measures in place to ensure that training and development is accessible to disabled employees. The public sector average is 36 per cent.

The Disability Standard is the only management tool that enables organisations to accurately measure their performance on disability, in every way it affects the business, and to put in place action plans that deliver real business improvement. The leading high scoring organizations must demonstrate that there is a visible top team commitment to disability equality. They must tell people what they need to do and train in disability specific competencies for employees involved in recruitment, career progression and customer care. The best performers also measure managers’ disability related performance and can demonstrate how disability confidence brings benefits to the business.