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“Untapped Potential”: The Autistic Worker Experience

By making autistic voices central to our policies, Aspiritech has become a supportive workplace where attention to each individual’s communication style and environmental consideration is the norm, not the exception.
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While many organizations struggle to successfully employ autistic adults, Aspiritech stands out as a leader who has figured out how to tap into the talents of this population. A recent study conducted in the UK surveyed 225 autistic, 64 neurodivergent, and 64 non-neurodivergent adults to find similarities and differences in their experiences with job application processes.  The study illuminates common challenges autistic employees face, underscoring why Aspiritech’s approach is so progressive. The researchers found that many autistic adults “experienced difficulties obtaining and sustaining employment” and “feel stigmatized” in workplaces that do not accommodate their needs.

 

In contrast, Aspiritech has created an autism-inclusive culture with over 90% of employees and 85% of managers being autistic. We provide the flexibility and support autistic workers require, like noise-canceling headphones, dimmed lighting, remote work options, straightforward onboarding, and mentors. As the UK study notes, autistic adults benefit from workplaces that offer “autism awareness training” and “early, ongoing vocational support”.

 

The study also highlights how autistic employees value consistent routines and prefer direct communication over ambiguous social norms. Aspiritech’s direct style of communication and predictable routines allow autistic employees to thrive. According to the research, organizations must recognize both strengths and challenges in order to reveal the untapped potential of autistic workers. At Aspiritech, we continually emphasize abilities over perceived limitations.

Interview Process: Practical Skills Assessment over Social Skills

All groups surveyed wanted more practical assessments of skills over social skills in the interview process. Autistic and neurodivergent participants especially needed accommodations like adapted environments for those skills assessments. Autistic participants faced unique barriers like hiding traits and worrying about discrimination if disclosing their diagnosis. To improve experiences, employers could offer alternative application methods, clearer process information, better autism understanding, and accommodations.

 

 

By making autistic voices central to our policies, Aspiritech has become a supportive workplace where attention to each individual’s communication style and environmental consideration is the norm, not the exception. Our success demonstrates that with the proper hiring, training, accommodations, and culture, companies can build inclusive environments where autistic adults excel. We are proud to model employment practices that counter stigma and recognize the enormous contributions autistic individuals offer.

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