News29th October 2015

Next Gen Text service wins disability award

BT's NGT service has been recognised by the London Business Disability Forum for their work on improving communication.

by Sarah Lawrence

 BT's Next Generation Text service (NGT), a technology service to aid communication between Deaf, hearing, or speech impaired people, has been around for just over a year now and yesterday they took the top spot in the 'Products & Services – Business to Consumer' category at the Business Disability Forum's Disability-smart Awards in London.

The awards are given to organisations that exhibit leading practice within the ten criteria of the world-leading Disability Standard. The judging panel for the awards included leading experts in the area of disability, representatives from BDF's Member and Partner organisations and disabled opinion leaders.

The NGT service enables anyone with hearing or speech difficulties to use their smartphone, tablet or computer to type a message to a BT relay assistant, who will speak the words to the person being called, and type or speak their response. NGT can be used at home, in the office, or on the move to book taxis, use phone banking, order goods, or just chat with family and friends.

Lorna Stephenson, Head of Service Development at BT commented: "We are delighted to have received this recognition for the NGT service, which we are providing on behalf of the wider communications industry. NGT is an example of how innovation can help break down mainstream communication barriers for the many speech and hearing impaired Britons."

 BT say they are setting a new standard for the communications industry by making NGT freely available to all communications providers, increasing choice for users and ensuring it is available to as a wide an audience as possible, not just BT customers.

 The full list of winners for the 2015 awards are:

  • Executive Disability Champion: David Oldfield, Lloyds Banking Group
  • Disability Champion: Neil Milliken, Atos
  • Know-how: HMRC
  • Adjustments: Lloyds Banking Group
  • Recruitment: Sainsbury’s
  • Retention: Barclays
  • Career Development: Civil Service
  • Products and Services, B2B: Nuance
  • Products and Services, B2C: BT
  • Product Development: Sainsbury’s
  • Communication: HSBC
  • Premises: Brent Council
  • ICT: Barclays

The Business Disability Forum’s joint Interim CEO, David Goodchild, said "Every business, regardless of size, industry or sector, should strive toward emulating the achievements of this year's award-winning organisations, by demonstrating a commitment toward getting things right for disabled customers, employees and stakeholders."

For more information on the NGT service, or to download the apps, you can find their website at

Article by Sarah Lawrence

posted in Community / News

29th October 2015