A Swansea firm has recruited a golden retriever as an Executive Assistant.
Crunch Simply Digital gave one-year-old Tudor his very own title after he qualified as a guide dog with media executive Angharad Paget-Jones.
The firm has been praised by the charity Guide Dogs for its supportive attitude towards Angharad and Tudor during and after training.
“They hired me knowing I was on the waiting list for a guide dog and did so on my skills, not something many potential employers have done in the past.
“I’d been on the waiting list for a guide dog for more than two years, so I wasn’t expecting anything to pop up as quickly as it did. I required a pretty specialist dog for my needs and training would take several weeks.
“Crunch arranged for me to have the necessary leave with Tudor without any issues and have given me extended lunches for my trainer to visit, breaks during the work day to take Tudor outside, and they even changed the office around to accommodate him.
“Tudor can wander freely around the Crunch office instead of being confined to my desk, which he loves, and they’ve made Tudor and I feel more than welcome. We’re not treated as a disabled person and her guide dog, but as valued members of the Crunch team. Tudor has even been made Executive Assistant!”
Stuart Crumlish, managing director of Crunch, said:
“Having Tudor in the office has been an inspiring experience that’s brought positive impact all round.
“Angharad needed 10 days’ leave to train with Tudor to ensure the best working partnership possible. To integrate Tudor, we made office improvements, giving him the right space and ensuring food was away and out of reach. These were immediate changes. Briefing the rest of the team with the right information and giving them time to welcome Tudor was important too.
“Simply, he’s now part of the Crunch team. We’re glad Angharad feels he’s included and not only a working dog. There are times he’s treated as a pet and can roam the office. We’re thrilled Angharad and Tudor are happy and settled in their workplace home.”
Tony Harvey, senior practitioner with Guide Dogs Cymru, said:
“Employers have a duty to make reasonable adjustments so that a disabled person is not at a substantial disadvantage, but Crunch has gone so much further. They have even brought in a new policy for people with a disability based on Angharad’s experience and her need to attend training.”