Is your company ready for Neurodivergent talent?

Try our Neuro-compliance game and test yourself.

Test your Neuro-readiness

Our game demonstrates that all companies can accommodate neurdivergent individuals with just a few adjustments.

In this game, you’ll answer 6 questions.

You’ll have multiple choices for each question displayed below it. You see the question at the top of the screen, while the answer options are displayed below.

Once you have completed the entire game, you will receive a score that indicates how ready you and your workplace are to hire neurodivergent people.

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See your result in the game above.

How is your Neuro-readiness? If there’s room for improvement, check out our guide for SMEs here.

Not sure about your next step?

At Specialisterne, we build the bridge that connects talent with the need for skilled labor. We’ve been doing it for 20 years.

You get strong IT, tech and data skills at a specialist level for your business.

At the same time, your managers and employees will be equipped to receive neurodivergent specialists, and you will be given tools to address diversity as a strength in your company.

You’ll be guided on how to retain employees with autism and similar qualities and help you create inclusive workplaces.

Fill out the contact form and let’s get your workplace ready for the future together. 

Become Neuro-inclusive: A guide for SMEs

01: Job Postings

Your job postings are crucial for attracting candidates. Many companies automatically seek a generalist, even when they’re actually looking for candidates for specialized roles.

Many neurodivergent individuals are specialists and can bring deep expertise and impressive skills to the table. However, this potential is lost if the job posting is too general or if there are excessively high demands for things like flexibility and self-management.

Tips for writing job postings for specialists:

  • Decide in advance whether the job function requires a specialist or a generalist.

  • Ensure the job title clearly describes the role.

  • Keep the job description simple and precise so applicants know what you’re looking for.

  • Emphasize describing the specific essential skills you’re seeking.

Be cautious about requesting general skills or using clichés like “jack-of-all-trades,” “resilient,” or “able to navigate a fast-paced environment.”

02: Application Process

In Denmark, almost all application processes are conducted in the same way, which is unfortunate.

Many neurodivergent individuals are filtered out in this process, even though they might actually be the best fit for the job.

There are two reasons for this:

In resumes and CVs, neurodivergent individuals often struggle to “sell themselves” as effectively as their neurotypical counterparts, even if their skills are just as good or better.

In job interviews, neurodivergent individuals often struggle to play the social games, which can lead to them being rejected in favor of more socially adept neurotypical applicants.

Tips for application processes that cater to neurodivergent individuals:

  • Place more emphasis on resumes and specific skills in selecting candidates for interviews.

  • Have applicants solve a specific task together with, or instead of, a traditional job interview.

  • Be aware of your own internal biases and be more open when you meet applicants. Often, they’ll function better socially once they’re in a safe environment.

  • Make it possible to conduct interviews online – it may be more comfortable for some applicants.

Provide a structured agenda for the interview and give it to the applicant beforehand. This will increase comfort and make it easier for the neurodivergent applicant to prepare for the interview.

03: Onboarding

The introduction period is something we all know is important for an employee’s success and retention, but it often suffers from busyness and lack of structure.

A good introduction is important for everyone, but for neurodivergent individuals, it’s essential that they settle in well.

Many neurodivergent individuals need structure, predictability, and clear guidelines for their work. They often require relatively close guidance in the initial period of their employment. This upfront investment will, in turn, give you very skilled, quick, and independent employees in the long run.

In other words, it pays off to invest in good onboarding!

Tips for onboarding:

  • Create an individually tailored onboarding program where the new employee learns about both job tasks, colleagues, and the company’s culture.

  • Allocate enough time for the new employee to get to know their new team and become an integral part of it.

  • Allocate enough time to support the neurodivergent employee in the initial phase. They will eventually become very independent and excellent at solving tasks.

Many neurodivergent employees thrive best initially with a relatively limited group of people to collaborate with and only 1 person giving them tasks.

04: Physical Work Environment

The physical work environment has a significant impact on employees’ efficiency, job satisfaction, and collaboration. This is true for everyone, but it’s particularly important for neurodivergent individuals.

Many neurodivergent individuals are more sensitive to noise, light, and smells. Many need more peace because their tasks require high concentration.

For those with sensitive senses, unpleasant sensory environments often drain energy that could otherwise be used for work. It can even lead to symptoms such as headaches, brain fog, tinnitus, etc., which could potentially result in sick leave.

Therefore, it’s a good investment to adjust the physical work environment to be more sensory-friendly.

Tips for a sensory-friendly physical work environment:

  • Think about it in the workplace design, e.g. with separate quiet offices, a “do not disturb” sign, the possibility to work from home, acoustic improvements, etc.

  • Ensure that headphones with active noise cancellation are available.

  • Design the workplace so that employees have access to non-generating light sources.

  • Use fragrance-free soaps and detergents and consider implementing a fragrance policy in your company that restricts the use of perfumes and other fragrances.

Involve neurodivergent employees in the working environment assessment process.

05: Mental Work Environment 

We can all agree that a good mental work environment is good for everyone – and for the bottom line. But it’s challenging to realize in practice.

Creating well-being requires a systematic effort from the company’s side. It’s a big job, but when employees thrive, it will result in higher productivity, less sick leave, and fewer dismissals and people leaving the workplace – and this can be seen on the bottom line.

Tips for a good mental work environment:

  • Actively work on creating a culture where there is room for diversity, being oneself, and vulnerability. It requires an investment of both time and energy.

  • Ensure that both individuals and teams have access to psychological assistance, supervision, or feedback. This way, potential collaboration difficulties and conflicts are addressed before they escalate.

  • Take the results of workplace assessment and well-being surveys seriously and take action on them.

  • Use sick leave meetings to identify problems that have led to sick leave and solve them.

Use dismissals and exits as tools to identify problems with the mental work environment.

06: Social Interaction

You may be used to social interaction being straightforward and not something you need to expend energy on.

But for many neurodivergent individuals, socializing is like a play for which they haven’t been given the script!

That’s why we encourage companies to actively consider how they address social aspects in their workplaces.

Tips for social interaction:

  • Actively work on fostering an open culture that allows individuals to be themselves, with openness and inclusion.

  • Acknowledge that employees’ social needs and preferences vary greatly. For some, coffee breaks are an essential part of the workday, while others consciously avoid them.

  • Take an active stance on the social norms and codes of the company.

  • Create social events with a clear program, such as an escape room instead of a big party.

Create events that end early, are alcohol-free and are smaller group events with fewer people. And let it be okay that not everyone wants or is able to attend large parties, retreats or conferences with lots of people and stimuli.