March 13 – March 19 is Neurodiversity Celebration Week, a global initiative that “challenges stereotypes and misconceptions about neurological differences.” Why should neurodiversity professionals be empowered in tech?
March 13 – March 19 is Neurodiversity Celebration Week, a global initiative that “challenges stereotypes and misconceptions about neurological differences.”
In an industry such as technology where there is a significant skills gap, and employers are crying out for innovative talent, the neurodiverse community offers a mass of untapped potential with fresh thinkers who bring unique and powerful perspectives to our industry. So why are companies in this sector still failing to take positive action?
A demographic in evolution
If employers do not assess and adapt their hiring processes to accommodate, support, and encourage neurodiverse professionals – they are actively excluding neurodiverse professionals. In 2022, Sparta Global surveyed more than 500 individuals from organisations across almost every industry sector to understand the unique perspectives neurodiverse professionals present to the technology industry. With these insights, we pulled together a report that shines a light on the powerful potential of neurodiverse professionals in technology and the unique contributions they can present to fast-growing and innovative technology teams.
Of those surveyed who identified as neurodivergent, only 26% were diagnosed during childhood, while 31% were diagnosed as adults. A further 15% told us that they are currently undergoing a diagnosis, while 28% are planning to seek an assessment in the future – it is a growing and evolving demographic.
The global unemployment rate for people on the spectrum sits at around 80%. With the UK government reporting that we could face a shortage of 900,000 skilled IT workers by next year, the neurodiverse community presents perspectives and skills that could be transformative.
Consider people on the autism spectrum. They are known to have extraordinary cognitive abilities linked to memory, concentration, and analysis – skills most relevant in the digital and tech space.
Maddy Kilsby-McMurray is a Performance Engineer at Sparta Global, ADHD role model and vocal advocate for tech accessibility. Maddy says; “Companies that support their neurodiverse employees can only stand to benefit. The best selves of people with ADHD can be brought to work when they are given the right support, every day. ADHD individuals are known to be enthusiastic, spontaneous, creative and inventive. Working with Sparta has already been such a positive experience. My ADHD was first disclosed during my onboarding, and I have been offered support throughout. Sparta offers its employees support and meets them where they are, which is refreshing.”
A commitment to inclusion
At Sparta Global we believe tech talent must be reflective of today's society – innovative, creative and inclusive. This is why we have created a Spartan community that leverages different experiences, backgrounds and viewpoints, encourages creativity and is reflective of today’s increasingly diverse society.
We hire based on attitude, aptitude and potential alone. No STEM experience or formal education is needed, and for those who are neurodivergent, our assessment criteria can be adapted and evolved to give everyone the best chance of success.
Click to download our Equal Tech Report: How neurodiverse professionals bring in-demand perspectives to tech.