Data from the Tech Talent Charter reveals how interest in neurodiversity by tech employers has more than doubled since 2022
It is neurodiversity celebration week this week and findings from the Tech Talent Charter (TTC)’s annual Diversity in Tech report certainly show that the tech sector has got something to applaud. The report from the UK’s leading non-profit driving diversity in tech, shows that interest in neurodiversity has rocketed this year with over half of companies now taking an interest and measuring neurodivergence in their workforce. This compares with only just over a quarter of companies measuring neurodiversity last year, less than half of this year’s figure.
The TTC analyses diversity reporting from 649 TTC Signatories made up of a wide range of companies powering the UK’s digital economy including Global, HP, Lloyds Banking Group, Nominet, PwC and CWJobs. It is estimated that between 15-20% of the population is neurodiverse, the huge rise in the number of Signatories that are recognising the value that neuroinclusion can bring to their organisation is therefore a major finding.
Most formally diagnosed neurodivergent individuals are diagnosed as children but with recent improvements in research and awareness more adults are now having their symptoms properly recognised. Women have however had to fight longer and harder to get the same diagnostic assessment and support as men because typically the symptoms found in men and boys are those that are most studied. It’s only recently that the different and previously unrecognised set of symptoms presented by girls and women have come to be better understood. For example, the onset of menopause can exacerbate the experience of ADHD, leading to the unmasking of neurodivergence at later career stages. The rising awareness of neurodiversity by tech employers and the steps many are beginning to take to support neurodivergent employees is therefore good reason for celebration this week.
Karen Blake, Chief Operating Officer, Partnerships at Tech Talent Charter commented: “It is really encouraging to see tech employers take a much more holistic view to inclusion with so many now focussed on areas such as neurodiversity and mental health. Neurodivergence has variously been described as a superpower or a disability, but individuals can identify differently to one, both or neither labels and the presence of these capabilities does not imply the absence of challenges and vice versa. It is excellent to see companies recognising the value of neuroinclusion in their organisation and taking steps towards ensuring individuals are adequately supported, both for the employee’s own wellbeing as well as the success of the company.”
Kirsty Cook, Global Director of Neuroinclusion at Auticon, a TTC signatory commented: The timing of increased awareness about neurodiversity, including the cognitive benefits conditions present, has synced with a growing talent shortage and skills gap. Leaders are beginning to understand there is a high population of unemployed potential they aren’t yet accessing that could add diverse thought and problem solving to their teams, which in turn will support innovation and growth. We are pleased to be one such company and to be championing neuroinclusion”.