Inclusivity in business involves making sure that all customers and employees are accommodated for. When it comes to workplace design, this includes factoring in disabilities, religious needs and gender requirements. Below are just a few different ways to make a workplace inclusive.
Improve accessibility to those with mobility issues
Some customers or employees may have mobility issues. It’s important that your workplace is accessible enough for these people. There are several things you may want to consider:
- Firstly, is there parking nearby and have you got a designated disabled bay? This can prevent those with mobility issues having to walk far to use your premises.
- If there are stairs within your workplace, you may want to consider adding a lift so that customers or employees are able to access upper levels. There are lift companies that can help you design and install this. Make sure to consider regular lift maintenance.
- When it comes to single steps or small flights of steps, you could consider adding a ramp – this is cheaper than a lift and easier to use.
- Make sure that walkways and doorways are wide enough for a wheelchair. Doorways may need to be widened if they are too narrow.
Consider improving your bathroom facilities
You should also consider your workplace bathroom facilities. Employees and customers may have different bathroom needs that must be accommodated.
First, make sure that both men and women have adequate bathroom facilities. If you only have a single unisex bathroom cubicle, make sure that it is not designed solely around men and that it has features like a sanitary bin.
A toilet with disabled access is recommended in all workplaces. This needs to be larger in order to accommodate a wheelchair and may require adding features like a grab bar and lower sink.
When it comes to restaurants or stores that attract families, it could also be worth adding baby changing facilities. A baby changing table and nappy waste bin in a unisex bathroom area (such as a disabled bathroom) could be the ideal solution.
Add space in your office for isolation
Many offices nowadays are open plan and don’t have much private space other than the bathroom. Such private space can still be useful for employees that may require periods of isolation for meditation or prayer.
These could be particularly beneficial in large busy offices with lots going on. A room that employees can retreat to could be useful for those with anxiety or those that need to pray at certain times. This space could double up as a meeting room or a quiet room for work that requires concentration, so that it gets plenty of good use.