Companies See High Return on Workers with Autism

Each weekday, 24-year-old Bertram Nicholls leaves the three-story home he shares with his mother in Washington, D.C., and takes public transportation to his job in northern Virginia. He works for Freddie Mac, the federal home loan mortgage corporation. For the past year, the Marymount University graduate, who holds a Bachelor of Arts in liberal studies, has been working in software testing and data entry as an intern in support of the company’s business and technology projects.

Nicholls is not that different from most other working people—except that he has autism.

Companies around the world—particularly tech companies—have discovered that Nicholls and other job candidates with autism may be uniquely qualified to help them fill their talent pipelines. Recruiters say that such individuals tend to be meticulous, can focus for long periods and are comfortable with repetitive work. Those abilities can make them well-suited for a range of technical jobs, and those positions often pay very well.

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