Universal design makes good business sense. It’s simple: the more people who can access your business, the more customers you’ll attract for your business to flourish.
Modern business is competitive worldwide. Business owners realize that here, in Newfoundland and Labrador, we’re contending with a rapidly-growing aging population, a recent baby boom and a large community of persons with disabilities. As such, businesses need to change to reflect the needs of their customers.
One example is our provincial real estate and construction industries, which are beginning to see an increased demand for residential homes and public spaces that work for everybody. The strong value of universally-designed spaces is being widely recognized by both builder and buyer, which appeal to the needs of users of all ages and abilities.
Embracing universal design is also a measure in practicing good corporate social responsibility. Your business or organization can, with universal design, create a meaningful, productive and successful user experience for all visitors – existing and prospective clients alike. In addition, your leadership in ensuring inclusivity and accessibility will not go unnoticed. Indeed, there is well-earned pride in being a leader in your community, setting a strong example for other businesses.
Where would you start? Your efforts could begin with having an accessible website so that more people can engage with your business or organization online. Offering a facility with level entryways and other accessible features throughout will encourage and enable visitors to interact and have a positive experience at your business.
Universal design is a leading, worldwide trend. Airports and shopping centres are increasingly user friendly. Shoppers using wheelchairs or strollers who can take their equipment, bags and children into a larger sized washroom or changing stall will stay and shop longer.
There’s also the added bonus of building repeat business and word of mouth praise from customers who’ve had a positive, enjoyable experience.
Don’t forget the importance of making your business inclusive to your employees as well, who will be of varying abilities. With the right workplace atmosphere and attitudes, everyone can thrive.
Interested in learning more about universal design? Explore this site for helpful resources, tips and guidelines.