Having adisability creates a limitation in the competitive world of employment, with somany applicable candidates, a disability lands a person on the fine line toautomatic rejection. This is just a typical issue occurring in the Autismcommunity, as “the combined unemployment and underemployment for young adultswith autism is estimated at 90 percent nationwide,” according to Joseph Erbentrauta writer for Huffington Post. With unemployment rates higher than the nationalaverage, it is apparent that businesses are more focused on the stereotypicalchallenges of hiring within the autism community, then the benefits they wouldgain.
But four major companies: Microsoft, SAP, Walgreens, and Freddie Mac haverecently reached out in employing in the autism community, which allows them tolook differently in the labor market. It is highly misunderstood that peoplewith autism will not provide any beneficiary value to the company, but in factthey are quoted to be “model employees”, due to them “having excellent rotememory, being extremely focused; being innovative; following rules androutines; attention to detail and accuracy; and being honest and loyal”according to Nicole Lyn Pesce a writer from Moneyish.com. These characteristicsfound in adults with autism allow them to be successful in companies such asGoogle, who have yet to reach out employment in the autism market.
Which leadsto the contention, that Google should consider employing in the autismcommunity due to the benefits they would gain.In order tounderstand why Google should recruit employees in the autism community, theremust be an understanding what autism is. Autism is a “complex developmentaldisorder that causes problems with thinking, feeling, language and ability torelate to others; also considered a neurological disorder” (NationalInstitute of Mental Health); and in recent ratings, it was foundthat autism affects one in 68 children nationally.
With the autism populationincreasing, so is the demand for jobs; as schools are educating and preparinghigh school students due to the IDEA federal special education law that”requires that school districts help students with disabilities make thetransition from school to work and life as an adult.” (Autism Speaks) This demonstrates that adults and young adults withautism have the skills they need to prepare them for employment. But sinceautism spectrum encompasses a group of complex disorders of brain developmentcharacterized to varying degrees by difficulty with social interaction andverbal and nonverbal communication, their interpersonal skills are weak, butmany autistic individuals are quite intelligent and high functioning (. Roughly60% of people with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) have an average or aboveaverage intelligence. This strips away the stereotypic view of how autisticindividuals lack intelligence.
Individuals with autism having qualitytraits could help add beneficiary value to companies such as Google.Individuals with autism are found to be extremely creative since autistic mindsare wired differently. This should be taken advantage of since these ideas canlead to brilliant new concepts and creative ways to solve problems. They have agifted ability to identify patterns and anomalies in data and to focus andperform high-quality repetitive work. These are valuable characteristic foundin jobs such as “data analysis, IT, software design and multimedia” (J. Che,Huffington Post).Tim Weiler, a Willis Towers Watson consultant states, “Theyperformed really well, and they opened our eyes that we should consider themfor jobs in HR, technology and benefits administration.
“(J. Che, HuffingtonPost) Although individuals with autism struggle with communication and socialinteraction, Google should take a chance to acknowledge these valuablecharacteristics, as stated by Tim, “They’re diligent and capable of a period ofprolonged focus. If you can alter your sourcing strategy by not unconsciouslyscreening them out when you interview them, you can solve management issues.
“(J. Che, Huffington Post) Google should acknowledge the benefits thatother companies are gaining after opening up programs or employing in theautism community, and they should do the same. After SAP, a German softwarecompany launched its Autism at Work Initiative in 2012, the company saw anincrease in sales growth of 3.65% the following year.
Microsoft, who launch asmall pilot program and a collaboration with Specialisterne, a firm thattrained people with Autism, in 2015, saw an increase in revenue that followingyear. This shows that companies expanding and diversifying their group ofemployees are learning and benefiting from their differences. The autismpopulation is increasing, and so the need of getting employment for theautistic individuals as the underemployment and unemployment rate is higherthan the national average. It has been trending that major companies areemploying autistic individuals, and seeing a boost in their company.
Whichshould lead Google to consider employing in the autism community due to thebenefits they would gain. This is not only a good opportunity for Google tohelp underserved labor, who not only could do productive work but who have foryears struggled to find employment. Google diversifying into the autismcommunity allows to learn about their differences but would benefit from ittoo. Google employing in the autism population does not allow their company toflourish, but it will impact individuals who have struggled due to theirdisability.