We’re committed to building an inclusive workplace that fosters a diverse range of skills, expertise and thoughts to navigate our business into the future. We’re also on a mission to become Australia’s most accessible bank, and to achieve this, we’ve been working hard to improve our accessibility policies and practices for both our employees and our customers.

We caught up with Andrew, a Team Leader within Retail Lending Services, who shares how he brings his whole self to work and won’t let his hearing impairment hold him back.

How do you perform your role at CommBank?

I previously had very limited access to sign language interpreters, which meant I found it hard to keep up in meetings, especially when there were lots of people talking. By the time I’d figured out who was speaking, I’d already missed half of what the person had said.

I have an interpreter now, who (until recently) had been coming in to work with me for two hours a day, twice a week. We try to schedule our leadership team meetings for when the interpreter is here and now we’ve got a really good operating rhythm on our days. It makes it so much easier for me to participate and plan.

Has COVID-19 affected the way you work?

Most of us are working from home now, however I’ve  been able to book interpreters to support me virtually for a few hours every day. Firstly the interpreter dials into the leadership team huddle , and then to my team’s huddle. The interpreter then stays on the line for calls that I need to make to my team members, which is especially vital during these times. I’ve always used video calls for my 1:1 catch-ups with my manager and my direct reports, and luckily I’ve been able to continue this while working remotely.

How does your team support you?

The great thing about my manager is that she’s not afraid to advocate for people like me.

We have a lot of stakeholders and not many are aware that I have a hearing impairment. She speaks up for me, helping educate others and raising awareness about deafness.

What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

I started playing Cricket for NSW Deaf Cricket in early 2010 and then I made it into the National Deaf squad in 2011. I got into Deaf Cricket through a colleague who used to work here at CommBank. I took over as captain from him in 2018 when the National Deaf team went to India for the Deaf T20 World Cup. It’s been a huge honour.

Wow that’s great! Sounds like a big commitment – how do you manage work alongside captaining the team?

Before COVID-19, I was working from home two days a week and coming into the office three days. So it meant less travel time and more flexibility for me to manage my training schedule and other commitments. CommBank has been a major sponsor of cricket and has fully funded the Deaf national team since 2017 as part of the ‘A Sport for All’ program with Cricket Australia.

We’re one big family in Retail Lending, and I’m very thankful for the care and support I receive from my team and the bank. 

Interested in joining an inclusive team that supports all abilities?

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