To make your application process accessible for people who are deaf or have hearing loss, offer communication support and take a flexible approach.
To encourage more people with hearing loss to apply for your roles, clearly state on the form that you offer communication support at interviews, if required, including a sign language interpreter or speech-to-text-reporter.
Be prepared to have a flexible approach when supporting candidates who are sign language users, for whom English is a second language.
- Ensure the application form is in plain English and avoids jargon.
- Consider offering a job trial as part of the recruitment process. Work trials give the applicant a chance to demonstrate their skill in a practical way, rather than having to do a formal recruitment process that might be inaccessible to them. Employer Advisors at Jobcentres can provide more information about offering job trials.
Employers that have reached level 2 or 3 of the Disability Confident scheme should offer an interview to disabled people who meet the minimum criteria for the job – this applies to people with all levels of hearing loss if they consider themselves to be disabled. For sign language users, this provides an opportunity for them to demonstrate their abilities in their first language at interview, and advertising you are part of this scheme may encourage a broader section of the hearing loss talent pool to apply.