To determine the most appropriate support, (reasonable adjustments), a workplace assessment should be carried out by a dyslexia workplace consultant. This is not something that you or your employer should do.
An employer has a duty under the Equality Act to implement reasonable adjustments for a disability. Workplace assessments should be undertaken approximately every 3 years or sooner if you have had a promotion, or your day-to-day duties have changed substantially. A new diagnostic assessment does not need to be undertaken.
There are two types of workplace assessment:
Free Workplace assessments through Access to Work
You will need to contact Access to Work directly (your employer cannot do this on your behalf).
the name, email address and work phone number of a workplace contact, eg your manager
your unique tax reference number (if you’re self-employed)
the name of your New Enterprise Allowance mentor (if you have one).
You will be asked two screening questions:
Do you consider that you have a disability?
Does your disability affect you at work?
The answer to both of these should be “Yes” if the application is to succeed.
A local adviser will then be in contact with you (and your employer). It is important to keep a note of their contact details in case of further queries.
The workplace assessment will take between 1-2 hours. The assessor will visit you at your place of work, and will need a copy of any diagnostic /screening assessment that you have.
They will talk to you about the problems that you are experiencing at work, ask you to complete a few of your normal tasks, and ask your employer some brief questions about areas of your job that you struggle with.
You will then be sent a report stating what problems you experience at work because of your dyslexia, and what adjustments can be made which can help. This could include assistive technology (e.g as speech to text software), specialist equipment (e.g. a Dictaphone), training (e.g. training to learn how to use new software), and changes which could be made to the working environment (e.g. awareness training for your managers and co-workers on dyslexia). All of these measures are designed to help you achieve your full potential at work.
The report will contain recommendations and quotes for the cost of the reasonable adjustments suggested. It will tell your employer what government funding may be available.
Your assessor will follow up with you and your employer after an agreed period of time (usually 3-6 months), to check that reasonable adjustments have been implemented, if the adjustments are working, and whether or not further adjustments are needed.
For more information please visit the access to work website: www.gov.uk/access-to-work/overview
Private workplace assessment through a private consultancy or dyslexic charity
In some areas of the country, Access to Work may not have a qualified dyslexia workplace consultant available for a dyslexia workplace assessment or your employer may want to use an organisation of their choosing which will do a more detailed assessment. Private assessments are usually 3-4 hours in length.
They will need to pay the costs of this assessment, but can use the report that is produced to apply to access to work for funding to implement any reasonable adjustment which is recommended by the report.
Organisations in Kent who offer private workplace assessments include: