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SHL Celebrates Purple Tuesday 2023!

In honor of Purple Tuesday 2023, SHL shares its commitment to disability inclusion. Discover how our partnership with Purple and our ongoing research initiatives are driving positive change in the assessment experience for candidates with disabilities.

It’s that time of year again…Purple Tuesday!

For those who are less familiar with it, Purple Tuesday is a global social movement sponsored by Purple, aimed at improving the customer experience for disabled people and their families. The Purple Tuesday movement is celebrated annually on the first Tuesday of November, but work to promote accessibility and inclusivity continues all year round through the fruition of commitments made by participating organizations.

This year’s celebrations were as inspiring as ever, and we were honored to attend the flagship event in London and take part in the Purple Tuesday Sponsors panel discussion. Our colleagues around the world joined in spirit donning their purple attire!

Purple Tuesday Event 2023

Purple Tuesday Event, 2023.


SHL partnered with Purple Tuesday several years ago when we made a “Purple Pledge” to improve the assessment experience for candidates with hidden disabilities. This pledge was the catalyst for establishing our Neurodiversity Research Program in 2019, which aims to define evidence-based best practices for assessing neurodiverse talent. As the global leader in HR technology and psychometric science, SHL is uniquely positioned to gather evidence-based research to inform products and best practices.

Last year, we pledged to translate the findings from our early research into practice to create a more accessible and inclusive assessment experience for all candidates to remove the burden of disclosure. This is particularly important for neurodivergent candidates, who often have the choice of whether to disclose given the concealable nature of many types of neurodivergence and often choose not to in the hiring process given the bias often faced due to stigma and stereotypes.

To deliver on this pledge, since our last Neurodiversity Research Update we have continued to explore:

  1. How candidates perform on and react to a range of assessments so we can identify and proactively address potential challenges.
  2. How we can support the disclosure process by using more inclusive language to help candidates decide whether to disclose and to try to boost research sample sizes.
  3. What kind of accommodations are seen as most helpful - so we can apply universal design to incorporate these in our platform and products?

We look forward to sharing our insights in our annual research report later this year. In the meantime, I’m delighted to share with you some of the ways that we are implementing small changes that can make a big difference in the candidate experience (in addition to those shared in our last blog):

In our most recent disclosure research, the modifications that neurodivergent participants felt would likely be most helpful were changing the contrast options, using a screen reader, and hiding the timer.

  • Many of our assessments allow participants, including those who are neurodivergent, to select from a variety of color contrast options. And many are also compatible with assistive devices, such as screen readers. Throughout this year and into 2024, we will be working with an accessibility expert to ensure as much as possible that our assessments are compliant with WCAG 2.1 AA standards.
  • We are currently working on implementing customization options for the candidate to hide features they may find stressful or distracting, such as the timer and progress bar.
  • We’ve also created a new Neurodiversity Information Hub for Candidates on our website to support candidates, including access to practice tests, resources for identifying accommodations, and FAQs.

We have continued to share our research insights and their practical implications for organizations widely and have presented them at the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology (SIOP) annual conference, as well as the SIOP Leading Edge Consortium. Please check out our Neurodiversity Collection resources for more details and join us on our SHL Live on Thursday, 9th November.

We are proud to continue to partner with Purple and participate in the Purple Tuesday events. This year we have committed to expanding our Inclusive Assessment research program to more broadly support disability inclusion. Research is already underway, looking at enhancing the assessment experience for deaf candidates, visually impaired candidates, and candidates with physical abilities that affect how they interact with computers and other devices. We look forward to sharing more with you at a later date!

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Clare Mottram

Clare Mottram is a Senior Scientist on SHL’s Science team, with over 15 years of consulting experience in the talent assessment industry. Clare heads up SHL’s Neurodiversity Research Program and has expertise in designing, implementing, and evaluating a wide range of assessments. She holds an MSc in Occupational Psychology from Liverpool John Moores University.

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