Accessible goods and services: a guide to making reasonable adjustments
Good business means anticipating what your customers need and want, and this includes the needs of disabled customers, and their families and friends. It is also a good idea to talk to your customers about any issues they may have when using your services, such as parking, getting in and out of your premises, using the facilities, and any recommendations they may have to help improve access.
An enjoyable customer experience
Imagine you are a customer - take a typical journey through your own service. You want to make it as easy as possible for all of your customers.
Remember, a little can go a long way
Many small changes to the way you work, how you present information and your premises can have a significant impact on the number of your customers and can be carried out at little or no cost. Some adjustments are relatively easy, such as making menus easy to read, clearing circulation space, putting grabrails in a toilet, or a handrail by a set of steps. Staff training, good customer service and positive attitudes towards disabled customers can often make the difference. Other measures, such as installing an accessible toilet, or creating a step-free main entrance can involve more work and may require technical planning, advice and finance.
Think broadly about a range of impairments too, such as:
- mobility impairments, including stick users and wheelchair users
- visual impairments
- hearing impairments
- arthritis and limited dexterity
- mental health
- learning difficulties
- learning disabilities
If you have noticed that few disabled customers use your services, this may be because your business is not known to them and their families as providing suitable access. In addition to existing customers, think about what improvements would attract new customers.