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ThirtyThree’s Megatrends: The neurodiverse talent pool

How to create an inclusive workplace for neurodiverse employees.

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Savannah Fox Associate Consultant

It is estimated that 10-20 percent of the world’s population are neurodiverse and one in seven UK university applicants reported having Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and/or are autistic.

Making up such a large proportion of the current and future workforce, now, more than ever, we need to understand the differences in how the neurodiverse like to work and what makes work accessible to them.

Download and read the latest ThirtyThree Megatrends – “The neurodiverse talent pool: An opportunity within hybrid working”.  

We unpack how the changing world of work and hybrid working are helping the neurodiverse into work and what employers can do to be better allies. We look at the hiring process, communications, and flexible working, as well as the resources you need to make your workplace more accessible. 

What is neurodiversity?

Firstly, we need to understand what we mean by neurodiversity and why it matters in the workplace. Neurodiversity describes the diversity of the human cognition, from ADHD and Autism to Dyslexia and Tourette Syndrome.

All neurodiverse people will exhibit different characteristics and experience different challenges. So, it’s important not to make generalisations and assume everyone is the same and will have the same needs.

“If you have met one person with autism, you have met one person with autism.”
Dr Stephen Shore

The benefits of neurodiversity in the workplace

Neurodiversity is having its moment and gaining prominence in media as an essential part of the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DE&I) movement. So, workplaces should be taking the needs of this group seriously.  

DE&I is no longer a "nice-to-have" for employers.

76% of jobseekers look at diversity and inclusivity when deciding whether to accept a job offer. And the next generation expect it or will leave their organisation within two years if they are not satisfied with its DE&I efforts.

Harnessing diversity of thought leads to better business results.

Diversity of thought is the idea that each of us have different preferences over the way we think, due to acquiring knowledge and understanding in various and unique ways. Diverse teams are more creative, diligent, and harder working. And according to one study, decisions made and executed by diverse teams deliver 60 percent better results.

Diversity and inclusion must go hand-in-hand 

By providing everyone with room to voice their ideas, and by also representing different groups, you open up the opportunity for problems to be solved differently, for unique perspectives to be heard and for meaningful collaboration to happen.

Employers are missing an opportunity.

25 percent of CEOs are dyslexic and research has shown that teams with neurodiverse colleagues in them can be 30% more productive than those without. Yet many with neurodivergence find the workplace a daunting and difficult place to enter, with many finding barriers in their way right from the first hurdle.

“Neurodiversity may be every bit as crucial for the human race as biodiversity is for life in general. Who can say what form of wiring will be best at any given moment?”
Harvey Blume The Atlantic, 1998

Addressing the needs of this group and helping them get into work will not only improve the diversity and quality of your teams but also help with combating labour shortages by tapping into the economically inactive. 

What can we do for you? 

If you would like more information, or help making your workplace more accessible, get in touch


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