50 jobs to be created for people with autism spectrum disorder
Up to 50 jobs for candidates with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) are to be created in the Irish technology sector over the next five years as a Danish organisation sets up in Dublin.
Specialisterne, or the Specialists, aims to create one million jobs for people with ASD throughout the world.
The organisation, which was founded in 2004 by Thorkil Sonne, assesses and helps find employment for high-functioning adults with ASD, allowing them to use their skills in the jobs market and offer them the opportunity to break into the workforce through internships in partner firms.
The organisation will officially launch its Irish operation today at SAP Ireland in Citywest, where its offices will be based.
Specialisterne Ireland’s Peter Brabazon described the service provided by the company as “recruitment and mentoring”, as well as helping to dispel the perceptions of ASD.
The organisation stays in close contact with the partner firm’s HR department, he explained. If a company wants to keep them on a more permanent basis, they can hire the candidate at the commercial rate.
It offers adults with ASD who may have struggled to find a suitable job a way into the workforce by tailoring working environments to suit their particular skills.
“The average person might go from education into a job situation, but for people on the autism spectrum, there may be a bit of a gap,” he said.
The first partner firm to sign up with the organisation is SAP Ireland, but Mr Brabazon said other firms such as Microsoft and Accenture had also expressed an interest in working with Specialisterne Ireland.
Among the characteristics of ASD are skills in pattern recognition, focus, and persistence and accuracy that are particularly valuable in the tech industry in areas such as software testing and data conversion.
The organisation has a particular focus on the technology sector, but Mr Brabazon said high-functioning candidates can also find their skills suited to the financial sector.
“They have a skill set that is very useful for certain types of banking,” he said.
The first candidates are expected to enter the system by mid-way through the first quarter of the year, with people in roles as consultants by the end of the year.