Why Universal Design is the Best Business Choice

by Mar 25, 2024

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These days, competition is fierce, consumers are increasingly diverse, and the need for organizations to prioritize Universal Design (UD) has never been more urgent. As companies strive to become more broadly welcoming, UD emerges as a powerful strategy to reshape profit centers and drive sustainable growth.

However, convincing decision-makers within your organization to invest in UD requires more than just passion; it demands a strategic approach backed by compelling facts and data.

Here’s how to effectively “sell” Universal Design within your organization, armed with persuasive data and insights:

  1. Demonstrate the Market Opportunity: Studies show that the global spending power of people with disabilities is estimated to be over $8 trillion. By designing products and services with access for all, organizations can tap into this lucrative market segment and gain a competitive edge.
  2. Highlight the Business Benefits: On average, companies that prioritize inclusion achieve 28% higher revenue and double the net income compared to their peers. Additionally, implementing UD practices can lead to a significant reduction in expenses related to retrofits and accommodations.
  3. Mitigate Legal and Reputational Risks: We’re all too aware of the legal and reputational risks associated with accessibility non-compliance. Last year, 4,605 lawsuits were filed due to inaccessible products or environments. By proactively investing in UD, organizations can avoid costly litigation and safeguard their reputation as champions of inclusivity.
  4. Improve Workplace Safety: Slips, trips, and falls account for one quarter of all injuries in the workplace, and more than 6.9 million people were treated in emergency rooms for fall-related injuries in 2021. Universal Design strategies reduce risks and mitigate the negative outcomes of unintended or accidental actions, ultimately creating a safer workplace environment for all.
  5. Drive Innovation and Creativity: UD is a catalyst for innovation and creativity within an organization. Companies that embrace UD principles repeatedly develop groundbreaking products and services that cater to a diverse range of users. For instance, Microsoft’s inclusive design approach led to the development of the Xbox Adaptive Controller, making gaming more accessible to 33 million gamers with disabilities. 

The journey towards embracing Universal Design may require persistence and perseverance, but the case is compelling on multiple fronts. Fortunately, it’s not a journey you need to take alone. My team and I can help you make the case for UD within your organization. Schedule a consultation with me on Calendly to get started.


Schedule a consultation with me on Calendly

Andrew D. Houghton

Andrew D. Houghton

President, Disability Inclusion Solutions

Nationally Recognized Accessibility Expert. Creating Innovative Disability Inclusion Solutions. Certified DOBE.

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