Customised IT systems and support for disabled staff.
”The team worked tirelessly to get me onto systems necessary for my job and, as changes happened to my job and those systems, the team were there every step of the way to make it possible”. HMRC User
As one of the UK’s largest government departments, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has strong employment and disability policies which support their aim to make systems accessible to everyone who needs to use them. The specialist technology and tailored services which help HMRC recruit and retain staff from the widest possible pool, equally including people with specific needs, are made available by the Department’s Information Management Services (IMS) Directorate working closely with Capgemini and their Aspire contract infrastructure partner Fujitsu.
An Accessibility Team, which is dedicated to helping staff with longterm particular needs, tailors HMRC’s standard IT services. The team deploy specialist equipment and software such as voice control to help staff with motor disabilities minimise use of computer keyboards and the mouse, and software that reads onscreen text instructions for visually impaired staff. HMRC implements current best of breed IT and works with other large employers to influence international standards bodies’ and suppliers’ future improvements.
HMRC staff with particular needs have specialist hardware and software to help them work effectively. Achievements include:
- Integrating IT services with HR policies to meet the needs of disabled people
- Making accessibility part of the requirements definition for the design of new systems
- Unsolicited thanks from many staff who consistently rate the service as outstanding or life changing
The ‘assistive technology’ market is still relatively immature. Neither HMRC nor Capgemini underestimate the amount of work required, but believe much has already been achieved and are committed to further improvements.