Cherrelle Williams, now a Customer Experience Coordinator, worked in the European Recruitment team for close to six years, leading the charge in supporting and assisting job candidates with disabilities.

Her work was recently recognised when she received one of two annual Disability Initiative Awards for employees who act as champions for disability awareness in Shell.

This is her story.

I started work with Shell in September 2011 as a temporary contractor, screening applications for UK graduate and internship programmes. About 15 months in, I was given the opportunity to join a project focused on working with students who had disabilities and helping them find employment.

I went on to work in this role for the next four years, providing support to job candidates with disabilities, and loved every second of it. It was a challenging and eye-opening position but I had the support of an incredible company that truly cares about its employees and values diversity and inclusivity in the workplace.

Every year I sit on a Q&A panel at an event for students who have disabilities and are looking to gain employment with top companies. One of the most frequent questions that comes up is, “When should I tell a company about my disability?”

My response is always that they should tell us in application or as soon as they can, because then we can support them from the very start of the application process.

Shell wants to give potential new hires the opportunity to put their best foot forward, and if we know about their disability beforehand, we can assist them to do so.

After working in both recruitment and now in a customer-focused role, I believe a company that can connect with its customers is one who understands them. The best way of doing this is to have a workforce who reflects the people you’re serving.

Through a focus on diversity and inclusion, Shell is committed to growing a dynamic workforce who does just that, and I am grateful I have an opportunity to play a part in process.

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