Coworkers looking at large screen computer
Making Adjustments

Adjusting with Vision Loss on the Job

Oct 19, 2022

Adjusting with Vision Loss on the Job

Legal blindness needs not be a career-ending injury. The need for making adjustments at work may seem like an overwhelming proposition, but plenty succeed while building the skills to continue working to a retirement of their own designation. On the other hand, giving up on a job prematurely is often regrettable. Before you start thinking about leaving a job, think about staying. No one can communicate your specific needs better than you can. Advocating for yourself and finding solutions is the foundation on which you will succeed. Smaller incremental changes are more sustainable than big sweeping changes, so get started early and don’t delay in adapting.

Change Your Mindset

Focus on abilities, not disability. You are an asset, not a liability. You have demonstrated the experience and qualifications to perform the job well and will continue to do that successfully by keeping an open mind to making adjustments at work. Don’t hide your efforts, be open to inspire and educate your colleagues.

A visually impaired business manager is presenting meeting agenda from accessible mobile device
A visually impaired business manager is presenting
meeting agenda from accessible mobile device

Make a Friend in IT

Making your computer at work easier to use is all about accessibility settings and that will require a good IT specialist. The right computer adjustments can go a long way in compensating your visual impairment. There may be a member of the IT team well versed in the needed adjustments, or you can work with them to consult a specialist at Microsoft Disability Answer Desk at: 800-936-5900

Talk to Your Supervisor or HR

An open dialog is always best; attempts to hide changes in vision usually work against you. It is in the employer’s best interest that you get the support you need to succeed. Be prepared to talk about the specific ways your employer can help to accommodate your needs.

Get a Low Vision Evaluation

Consult with a low vision specialist about your changing needs at work and where you need help. They can suggest and demonstrate optical and electronic magnification devices and special lighting.

Consult a Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor

Contact your State Rehab Agency for the Blind or Visually Impaired to learn more about services that can help with technology training and safe travel.

Listen to Hadley Presents Podcast

Keeping Your Job After Vision Loss

Listen to this conversation with the experts to learn about Hadley’s Working with Vision Loss workshops and great advice for finding resources and how to ask for what you need.

More Accessibility Support Phone Lines

For comments, questions or feedback, email us, or connect on Facebook or Twitter. We would love to hear from you!


About the Author: Dorrie Rush

Dorrie Rush is the Chief Content Officer and Visual Accessibility Expert at Ophthalmic Edge Patients (OE Patients), an online resource, presented by the Association for Macular Diseases, providing practical information and empowering advice for living a full and successful life with vision loss.

She is the former Director of the Grunwald Technology Center and Information Resource Service at Lighthouse International 2001 to 2016. Dorrie is known to have an eccentric view, which is particularly useful in compensating for her central vision loss from Stargardt Disease.

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