Neurodiversity in the Technology Workplace

Neurodiversity in hiring is often a decision made on diversity metrics, as opposed to the high-performance skills Neurodivergent talent can bring to a business.

Autism, Dyslexia, and ADHD are all examples of neurodiverse disabilities, which also come with talent, skills, and perspectives that can pay dividends in providing a business with a competitive advantage.

Diversity as a whole opens doors to further creativity and innovation. When minds that think differently come together, it allows for the exploration of new avenues, which can be highly advantageous in technology businesses creating new ways of problem-solving and innovation.

Several large companies have already reaped the benefits of this, and have put in place initiatives to keep attracting and supporting a neurodiverse talent pool.

SAP​ were very much ahead of most businesses in this and launched ​The SAP Autism at Work programme in 2013​. This allowed them to achieve significant positive gains, and continues to see them build a truly inclusive workplace.

Many organisations have since followed suit, including the likes of ​Goldman Sachs​ and ​Dell​, who now have Neurodiverse hiring initiatives in place. The positives that come with a diverse workforce are said to include both financial and cultural benefits and are becoming key parts of business hiring agendas.

At Vivo Talent Solutions, we embed Diversity and Inclusion in all our recruiting and hiring practices. In the next part of this article, we’ll share our steps to help you get started with attracting neurodivergent talent.

The first stage in starting a neurodivergent hiring initiative is to research how you, as an employer, can ensure that your business, office spaces, and employment practices can be made suitable and accessible for neurodivergent staff. Below are four reasonable adjustments you can make to start hiring and attracting neurodiverse talent.

  1. It is important that you review your current recruitment marketing and candidate attraction strategies.

1a. Your job descriptions and advertisements should always focus on outputs, as opposed to personality traits that could potentially discount a neurodiverse applicant.                                             

1b. You should also review the language used in your job advertisements to ensure you are as clear and unambiguous as possible.

2. During online application processes, It is highly recommended that you offer access to spelling and grammar checking softwares; this ables you to reduce barriers for those with dyslexia.

3. Transparency is very important during the recruitment process. Candidates with autism, in particular, can show traits of anxiety, so it’s important to offer precise details of what to expect during the interview process to allow them to feel at ease.

4. Across your company inductions and training sessions, it is highly recommended that you have disability training on all topics to raise awareness and understanding within the company. It is also recommended that reasonable adjustments are made at any induction or training sessions to suit neurodiverse individuals and their learning styles.

4a. For example, some autistic candidates may suffer from auditory overstimulation, so offering quiet time or providing noise-canceling workspaces is a change to consider.

Many of these changes can take time, but the overall goal is to create the most inclusive working environment.

If you’d like to talk to Vivo about how we work in partnership with our customers to support their Diversity and Inclusion initiatives, feel free to reach out to one of our consultants for a conversation. [email protected]


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