Ele.me, one of China's largest meal ordering and delivery services, has announced a new function has been added to its delivery service app to assist disabled staff, especially deaf food delivery drivers, Beijing News reported.
This comes after a screenshot of text messages between one of the company’s deaf delivery drivers and a customer went viral online. The picture, posted by the customer, shows a delivery driver’s apology that as he is deaf, he cannot call him to advise the customer of his arrival.
The post aroused much concern, with many people suggesting the company improve the functions of its app to help delivery drivers with disabilities.
The company has decided to optimize its food delivery app and add more functions that assist their disabled staff.
When a user tries to call a delivery driver with a hearing impairment, the app will show a pop-up window on the user’s mobile phone advising that the delivery driver has a hearing impairment and asking them to communicate via text messages. This avoids the complaints due to communication issues.
A new instant messaging service is embedded in the app to allow their delivery drivers to edit fixed frequently-used phrases, which saves time while communicating. Customers will receive a phone call with a recorded message telling them their food has arrived if they miss the messages, and all this can now be done by clicking a button.
Hearing aids have also been provided for deaf delivery drivers to guarantee their safety on the road, said the head of research and development at ele.me, “These hi-tech functions will be carried out on schedule to improve the efficiency of disabled delivery drivers and guarantee the user experience as well.”
Many measures have been taken to create more job opportunities for disabled workers. For example, screen reading software called “VoiceOver” has previously been put into the Ele.me app to assist visually impaired customers.