Around 700,000 people in the UK have Autism Spectrum Condition (ASC). People with ASC often have remarkable attention to detail, focus and ability of recall, especially in linguistic and numerical fields. They have strong visual acuity, perseverance, and understanding of concrete concepts, patterns and rules.
Yet only 15% of people with ASC in Britain are in employment.
That’s where Specialisterne comes in. It means “The Specialists” in Danish and it helps people with ASC to turn their condition into an advantage in the jobs market by employing them as business consultants on tasks like software testing, programming and data entry.
Since starting up in Copenhagen in 2004, Specialisterne has spread to 13 countries across the world and placed employees with organisations including Microsoft, the BBC, the NHS and Lockheed Martin. And German software company SAP, which works with Specialisterne, is aiming to employ 650 people with ASC – 1% of its workforce – over the next few years.