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The University of Nottingham understands that people are disabled by barriers in society, not by their impairment or difference (the social model of disability).
Reasonable adjustments are changes an employer makes to remove or reduce barriers in the workplace. This avoids wasting talent, skills, experiences and energy. Adjustments can be agreed or altered at any time, to ensure that they remain helpful. Adjustments can be temporary or permanent, and apply to:
- recruitment processes
- usual working practices
- workplace locations or environments
- workplace equipment, uniform or software
- working hours and patterns
- duties and responsibilities
- development, recreation or refreshment opportunities and facilities
For staff members
If you’re a staff member who needs help or support because of a health condition, injury or other mental or physical difference which substantially impacts your daily life, you may need reasonable adjustments.
Access internal support
First, speak confidentially to your line manager. You may need short term adjustments for just a few days. For example, to work in a ground floor office when you have an injury that impacts your mobility. However, most people need longer-term changes to their work. If this applies to you, your manager should work with you to develop a Reasonable Adjustments Passport.
If you require additional support, Employment Relations can advise. They may be able to tell you what adjustments have been made in similar situations, for example.
Reasonable Adjustments Passport
A Reasonable Adjustments Passport remains private between you and your line manager and it allows you to easily pass on your reasonable adjustments if your line manager changes
If your adjustments might have implications on health and safety, then you or your manager should also connect with your Health and Safety Coordinator. You may need a risk assessment, and your Coordinator can advise.
The Reasonable Adjustments Passport has been designed for disability, but it can be used for other needs; for example, to record pregnancy or menopause related adjustments, the impact of significant caring responsibilities, or during fertility-related treatments. You can adjust the template as needed for these circumstances.
Access Government support
The external national Access to Work programme can also provide support to help people access opportunities to start and/or stay in work. For those eligible, it can help with travel expenses or mentors . Access to Work can also support the university with advice on adjustments.
Complete your staff profile on MyView
There is no automated process to update your staff profile if you declare a disability to your line manager. This allows you control over your personal data. Please do update your profile on MyView.
This aggregated anonymised data is helpful to understand trends and potential issues. For example, if disabled staff members as a group have different outcomes such as rates of appointments, promotion or retention compared with other staff, this alerts the university to investigate as it may point to biases in processes.
For line managers
As a manager you can put in support for your staff without having to seek permission or further guidance. However, you may need training and advice yourself to feel confident providing support to others, especially if your staff member has complex needs, or has recently acquired the health condition impacting them at work and does not consider themselves to be an expert in the adjustments that could best support them.
Check the guidance provided for reasonable adjustments and consider what changes could be made. You are able to make many of these changes independently, but it’s essential that you do so by collaborating with your staff member. Your staff member is the expert in their own health and circumstances.
It is common to set some adjustments and review them a few days or weeks later to see how they work in practice.
You can also adjust the Passport process to capture adjustments supporting staff through menopause, fertility treatments, caring responsibilities or other circumstances, especially where adjustments may relate to non-cost items.
If you and your staff require additional support, Employment Relations can advise. They may be able to tell you what adjustments have been made in similar situations.
As a line manager you can also refer staff to Occupational Health for further advice. This is not required and should not be automatic. Waiting for a referral or a report should also not be a barrier to making some immediate common-sense adjustments. Occupational Health provides guidance, not instruction, and you remain responsible for organising reasonable adjustments with your staff.
If the adjustments or the underlying condition might have implications on health and safety, then please speak to your Health and Safety Coordinator. A risk assessment may be necessary, and your Coordinator can advise you and your staff member.
Costs related to reasonable adjustments are funded from local budgets; however, local resource is not usually an eligible criterion for denying an adjustment or considering it unreasonable especially where the cost relates to the protected characteristic of disability (which may include menopause). If you have queries or concerns about funding reasonable adjustments, the named contact for your area can discuss these with you.
Some staff may benefit from a peer group. You could highlight to your staff that they can join one or more of the staff networks if they wish. Current staff networks which may support staff requiring reasonable adjustments include:
- the Disabled Staff Network
- the Neurodivergent Staff network
- the Carers Network
- The Haven (for staff impacted by fertility issues, miscarriage or the loss of a baby)
- the Parenting Network
There are also other staff networks, including for women, LGBTQIA+ staff and/or racially minoritised staff. Staff network membership is personal to the staff member and they are not required to join, nor disclose to anyone whether they have.
Reasonable adjustments for job applicants
We are committed to inclusive recruitment and want to support you to succeed in our interview and assessment process. Where disability is disclosed on your application and you are shortlisted, you will be contacted to discuss potential adjustments. For example, depending on your needs you could receive questions in advance of the interview, receive test information printed in a larger font, or be provided with a quiet space or break during the process.
You can also contact our Recruitment team directly to discuss adjustments by emailing email@example.com or by calling +44 (0)115 748 4800.
Did you know that if you demonstrate that you meet the minimum requirements for the role, you will be automatically shortlisted as a disabled candidate (unless you opt out)? Learn more about our inclusive recruitment approach and our Disability Confident Employer commitments at our web pages for candidates.
Provision of equipment or changes to working practices for reasons other than as a 'reasonable adjustment'
Sometimes, staff or managers may wish to consider making changes for reasons other than disability or other factors necessitating a reasonable adjustment.
For example, some colleagues may work from different locations, including from home, as part of our agile working practices. You can download the Equipment Provision Guidance which explains more about equipment provision to support agile working and how to access this equipment.
Factors such as lone working, pregnancy, menopause, caring responsibilities, or others may also mean that colleagues require temporary or permanent changes to their usual work pattern, place of work, tasks and responsibilities, or the resources used to get work done.
Sometimes these can be managed using the Reasonable Adjustments Passport approach. However, Health and Safety issues such as lone working and pregnancy are managed through our Health and Safety processes. Health and Safety also support work station assessments.
As with reasonable adjustments, the provision of alternative or additional equipment and furniture for reasons of health and safety is also managed through the usual business processes and funded from local budgets.
Changes intended to empower individuals to work in the way that best suits them (unrelated to EDI or safety issues) are in the discretion of line managers and dependent on local budgets. HR can provide advice where you are unsure which process to use.
Colleagues may wish to visit our Health and Safety pages to learn more about H&S processes.