Advertising a role

Before you even begin to advertise a position in your organisation, there are steps you can take to make practices more inclusive.
One of the biggest barriers to employment for autistic people is the workplace expectation that everyone should be at least average at everything and conform to a standard employee description. If we can define roles more specifically, and isolate the key skills required to deliver success, then we don’t need to assess those attributes that are at best nice to have and sometimes unnecessary.

Be specific about the skills you need in a job description.
Listing unnecessary attributes may deter the very applicant you need!

Defining a role too broadly, can discourage an autistic person from even applying to a position, as they will believe that they won’t be able to perform in the role as they may lack capability that the employer has explicitly requested. Some skills that may unintentionally deter an autistic applicant are:

  • Strong interpersonal communication
  • The ability to work well with a team
  • Flexibility
  • The ability to multi-task

These attributes are undoubtedly important in the workplace and are central to many roles, however there are many roles and tasks where they’re not all required, despite typically being stipulated.

Consider only the skills that are absolutely essential for the position you need to fill. Prioritise and value these skills throughout the process.

Every autistic person is different and will have different strengths and weaknesses. Deciding on a more narrow and precise set of values to guide your recruitment process will improve your chances of attracting and selecting interested neurodiverse applicants. It might also improve your applicant pool in general, attracting employees who can identify their skillset’s relevance for your position.