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How to ask for adjustments for an interview

Interview Adjustments (working individual): Alexis Obue
  • Written byCareers and Employability
  • Published date 22 February 2023
Interview Adjustments (working individual): Alexis Obue
Interview Adjustments (working individual): Alexis Obue

A good interview should assess your skills for the job. What it shouldn't do is put you at a disadvantage because of any impairments. If it can be changed so that your condition does not put you at a disadvantage, then this is a reasonable adjustment. You have the right to ask for changes to your interview and employers must provide reasonable adjustments under the Equality Act 2010.

So how do you ask for adjustments for an interview? Here are a few steps to help you:

  1. Think about specific adjustments you would require

    Many organisations will either ask if you need adjustments during the application process or when you are invited to interview. You do not need to disclose your condition during the application process, however, if you are going to ask for adjustments, you will need to mention your condition.

    Examples of reasonable adjustments

    • A sign language interpreter
    • More time for an interview assessment
    • Wheelchair access
    • Receiving interview questions in advance
  2. Plan out what you're going to say

    Before reaching out to the person who offered you the interview, it might be useful to find out what will take place at your interview and ask for the changes that you feel you need for it. Questions you could ask about: the format of the interview, whether there is an assessment and if it's handwritten, number of interviewers, length of the interview, whether there is level access to the interview room. Don't assume that the person you're in touch with knows anything about disability, therefore, it may be best to go into detail about your condition. For example: "I have an ear condition which means that I would need a room with good lighting for me to work effectively. This is so that visibility is better and I can lip-read. Can you adjust the lighting in the room?"

  3. If they refuse your request

You may wish to reach out as soon as possible as this will increase your chances of getting what you need. However, if they reject your request for a reasonable adjustment, ask if they can come up with alternative ways that they could make the interview accessible while still assessing the skills required for the role. If an agreement cannot be reached, this could be discrimination. If this is the case, you may contact the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (Acas) for advice.