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The Four Pillars of Accessible Employment

Updated: Aug 4, 2023

Throughout the work we do, CAN WiN applies The Four Pillars Model of accessible and inclusive employment, helping build employer capacity to successfully hire and retain employees with diverse abilities.

When we connect with new Employer Partners, we start here - with foundational training aimed at increasing the core competence of the recruitment team, enabling them to recruit from this diverse talent pool.

Our four pillars are: Commitment, Readiness, Recruitment and Retention.


Commit to being an inclusive employer. This includes:

  • Creating a commitment to be inclusive which is fully supported by senior leaders;

  • Create employment opportunities for candidates with diverse abilities;

  • Valuing a diverse talent pool with recruitment focused on ability in relation to the job;

  • Exploring and developping community partnerships.


Get ready for change by prepare to shift long-held beliefs about people with disabilities and diverse abilities. This includes:

  • Designating a DEI Lead to facilitate the developed strategic plan with the leadership team;

  • Apply a change management process, preparing hiring managers to shift practices;

  • Provide training and education for leaders and staff to support skills development and a culture of inclusion;

  • Develop and implement recruitment best practices to hire people with diverse abilities.


Adapting the recruitment process to hire diverse talent includes:

  • Actively recruiting people with diverse abilities for career opportunities;

  • Engaging different interview styles and approaches;

  • Encourage and support proactive disclosure of abilities in relation to the position;

  • Screening in candidates instead of screening out to build candidate pools (which often proves to be more difficult in this labour market).


Ensuring full engagement of diverse talent throughout the employment lifecycle, including:

  • Actively fostering a culture of inclusion within the workplace to retain talent;

  • Ensuring adjustments are in place prior to candidate start dates– setting people with diverse abilities up for continued success;

  • Continually providing new employees with appropriate supports and resources;

  • Building internal momentum and capacity.


Animated graphic of the workd with the accessibility emblem pinned to the earth.

Do you want to be a more inclusive and accessible employer?

Take this 15-minute Disability Inclusive Employer Self-Assessment to gain a deeper understanding of where you’re doing well and where there’s room to improve.

Open Door Group and Presidents Group collaborated on this tool, created from recent international research on practices that truly increase inclusion and retention of people with disabilities in the workplace.


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