For staff - what is reasonable adjustment?
One way the University seeks to support staff is through “reasonable adjustment”.
Being aware of individual differences is the key to becoming a disability confident employer. Sometimes it may be necessary to make a few changes to the work environment to allow an employee with disability the best possible opportunity to be successful in a position.
Modifying the working environment or making changes to the way a job can be performed is called making reasonable adjustments.
A reasonable adjustment can be as simple as relocating a person with a mobility impairment closer to amenities, or installing a particular type of software on a computer for a person with vision impairment.
Making reasonable adjustments is a way in which employers can confidently recruit, retain and support people with disabilities. Under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (DDA) it is unlawful not to make reasonable adjustments for a person with a disclosed disability unless that adjustment would cause unjustifiable hardship to the employer. For more information on employers’ responsibilities and the rights of staff with disabilities visit the Australian Human Rights Commission website.
Many people with disabilities do not need adjustments, and those who do will generally be able to discuss the kinds of adjustments they believe will be effective in meeting their needs.
What is reasonable when making adjustments?
What is considered ‘reasonable’ will depend on the facts and circumstances of the particular situation.
Under the DDA an adjustment would be considered reasonable unless it causes “unjustifiable hardship” to the employer or organisation. Unjustifiable hardship could be in the form of significant financial cost, an amendment to the physical building that is not possible due to council or other restrictions, or an adjustment that would unfairly disadvantage other employees.
There are a number of factors to take into account when considering whether an adjustment is reasonable such as:
- effectiveness of the adjustment in assisting the employee with disability to perform their job
- practicability of the adjustment
- financial or other costs of the adjustment
- extent of the organisation’s financial and other resources
- extent of any disruption caused
- availability of financial or other assistance to help make the adjustment
- nature of core organisational activities and the size of the organisation.
Flexible work practices
Developing a flexible workplace is one example of a reasonable adjustment. Read the Flexible Working Arrangements Policy to find out about the range of options available at the University A flexible workplace is one where managers and team members can work together to decide what working arrangements will be most effective for staff and the organisation.
Some examples of flexible work practices include:
- flexible start and finish times
- flexible rostering or scheduling
- flexible leave arrangements
- part-time work
- rostered days off or time off in lieu
- regular or occasional working from home
The aim of a flexible workplace is to create a working environment that is mutually beneficial to both the organisation and the employee.
Flexible workplaces may lead to improved productivity, reduced absenteeism and staff turnover, improved morale and greater staff loyalty.
Microsoft windows accessibility features
Learn about Windows accessibility options and other ways to customise your computer to work the way that best suits your needs. These built in features cover a broad range of functions including:
- display and readability
- sounds and speech
- keyboard and mouse
- accessibility wizard and utilities
For further information please refer to the ICT training website