Organising a job interview

For applicants, being offered a job interview can be exciting and at the same time nerve wracking. The offer of a job interview provides an opportunity to prepare in advance for the interview, in areas such as:

Applicants who have a disability may also need to consider their options about disclosing a disability when an interview offer has been made.

Should Disclosure Occur?

For people with an obvious disability, the personal choice to be made is whether to disclose a disability prior to the interview or during the interview. For people with a hidden disability, the personal choice to disclose a disability can be made prior to the interview, at the interview, when a job offer has been made, when employed in the position or not at all.

The offer of a job interview is an opportunity for applicants with a disability to prepare in advance if, how and when to disclose their disability. Investigation of legislative rights, responsibilities, experiences of other employees and employers with disabilities, and disability services and support networks can assist applicants in composing a plan that outlines effective disclosure strategies.

If an applicant chooses to disclose their disability at the point of being offered an interview, it is important to disclose AFTER the interview has been arranged. This ensures that the interview has been secured before any discussions or negotiation of any adjustments to the interview process is made.

Why Applicants May Choose To Disclose

Troy has received notification that he has been chosen to attend an interview for a position for which he recently applied. Because Troy requires an accessible venue for the interview he has decided to mention his disability and his needs at this stage.

An applicant may choose to disclose their disability when an interview offer is made to:

Why Applicants May Choose NOT To Disclose

When Megan was contacted by phone about an interview for a position she had applied for, she decided not to disclose her disability at this time, having previously determined that she did not require any job interview related adjustments during this process. She is unsure if she will ever need to disclose her disability, but would rather consider her options a little later.

An applicant may choose NOT to disclose their disability when an interview offer is made because:

What To Disclose

Applicants need to be prepared about how they would like to disclose their disability prior to attending the job interview. It is important that the information presented is clear and concise and relevant to the interview process. It is not essential to disclose in-depth medical or personal information about a disability unless there are specific requirements that need to be addressed for the interview.

The type of information presented to the appropriate person may include.

To Whom Should Applicants Disclose

If an applicant chooses to disclose their disability at the point of being offered an interview, it is important to disclose AFTER the interview has been arranged. It is also important for the applicant to identify the right person to disclose to. The most appropriate person to disclose a disability to is the convener of the interview panel or a member of the interview panel, not the person responsible for organising the interview.

The applicant may need to ask who the members of the interview panel are. Inquiries should be made AFTER the job interview has been arranged.

The Purpose Of Disclosing

It is essential that applicants state their purpose in disclosing to the prospective employer, convener of the interview panel or a member of the interview panel. This ensures that the disclosure can achieve a beneficial outcome.

Disclosure is most effective when the applicant is "…knowledgeable about their disability and (is) able to articulate both their disability-related needs and their unique (skills)." (1)

It is generally not necessary to provide a detailed account of the disability or medical condition, but what is most helpful is the ability to provide a clear statement of how the disability may impact on the applicants ability to attend and/or perform in the interview and the specific support required to equally compete for the prospective position of employment.

Applicants: Rights And Responsibilities When Organising A Job Interview

Applicants have a right to:

Responsibilities:

Employers: Role And Responsibilities When An Applicant Discloses Their Disability When Organising A Job Interview

Employers under Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S), Disability Discrimination legislation, and ethical practices , particularly if a person has disclosed a disability prior to interview, should:

It is the responsibility of the Convenor or their delegated officer to:

Footnotes