Talent without limits

Creating jobs for people with an occupational disability Watch the video

It is our firm belief that talent has no limits. With that in mind, we make sure there’s room within our organisation for people suffering from an occupational disability. Each year, we formulate targets for all our business units and make sure that the best possible support is in place. Our aim is that, by 2025, the bank will employ 225 colleagues with an occupational disability.

B-Able Desk

To achieve this aim, we have created the B-Able Desk. The Desk is staffed by a team who take all the necessary steps to ensure that the workplace is suited to both new and existing colleagues with an occupational disability. The team provide coaching and training, and are constantly looking for suitable roles. These may be existing roles, but the B-Able Desk also creates new jobs. To date (2018), we’ve been able to offer employment to 150 people suffering from an occupational disability.

Creating jobs for people with an occupational disability

An innovative example of how new jobs are created is the Sign Language Coffee Bar, which is staffed by deaf baristas and where visitors order their cup of coffee or tea using sign language. We’ve installed Sign Language Coffee Bars at our offices in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Breda and Groningen. To name another example, we employ Warm Welcome Officers, who welcome clients visiting our bank branches with a quick introduction and a cup of coffee.

Seeing the talent, not the disability

When helping people with a disability to find a job, it’s important to look at their talents rather than their limitations. We firmly believe that everyone has talent, regardless of whether they have a chronic condition, physical restriction or disability such as autism. To strengthen our lobby, we’ve now established De Ambitie van Zuid initiative. This has encouraged other businesses in Amsterdam’s Zuidas district to adopt our policy and way of working. Our activities and results regularly attract interest. In 2018, for example, we won the Ctalents Diamond Award in the ‘Inspirer’ category, in recognition of the fact that our approach inspires many other companies throughout the Netherlands to launch similar initiatives. We were also presented with a Business Walk of Fame Award by the Lucille Werner Foundation for the second time.

A job or internship for status-holders

The B-Able Desk also supports our Reboot colleagues. In response to a staff initiative, and in partnership with the City of Amsterdam and the Randstad temporary staffing agency, we launched the Reboot Programme in 2017; this programme is designed to offer asylum status-holders a job or internship at the bank. During special ‘speed dating’ sessions, managers from the bank engage in dialogue with these status-holders about the possibility of an internship or job at the bank. To date, we have welcomed several dozen from this group as new colleagues.

Watch this short video for a quick impression of a speed dating session.