Workplace Inclusion Now

People | Communities | Employers

Autism Employment Connector Challenge Winners Announced!

Autism Speaks announced on June 13, 2022 the winners of the 'Autism Employment Connector Challenge,' launched in partnership with HeroX, the leading platform and open marketplace for crowdsourced solutions.

Spectrum Designs working on a hat
Photo courtesy of Spectrum Designs Foundation

The Autism Speaks-sponsored Challenge invited innovators including jobseekers, employers, students, recruiters and members of the community, to identify solutions that support autistic job seekers navigating the employment search and application process while effectively communicating skills and abilities to prospective employers. 
After careful review by a team of experts consisting of autistic people, family members of people with autism, service providers, HR professionals and corporations that prioritize inclusive hiring, the three submissions that have been selected as winners include: 

  1. Zensory-Blissful Job Searching for Autistic Adults, submitted by Team Screen Queens (Beatriz Ramos, Sindhu Bhairavi Kannan and T.H.) 
     
  2. JobQuest: One goal. One passion. Inclusivity! submitted by Carlotta Granholm's team (Carlotta Granholm and Wenyan Liu)  
     
  3. Autism Employment Matching Engine (AEME), submitted by Rebecca Beam's team (Rebecca Beam and Hilary Kokenda)

Congratulations to all of the applicants and winners! Read more about the Challenge here!
 

Workplace Inclusion Now (WIN)!

 

Need help finding a job that's right for you? Or are you an employer looking to recruit dedicated and talented employees you may have never considered before? Workplace Inclusion Now (WIN)™ is Autism Speaks’ evidence-based employment system to build and support inclusive workplace culture through a comprehensive suite of resources. 

 

National data shows that most autistic adults are unemployed or underemployed, despite having the skill sets and expertise to excel in the workplace. Autism Speaks, together with our partners, aims to transform employment for those on the spectrum through Workplace Inclusion Now (WIN).

WIN brings together people (job seekers and employees with autism), employers and communities to increase employment opportunities for autistic employees and create a more diverse and inclusive workforce. 

This integrated model aims to:

  • Address disparities in and obstacles to employment;  

  • Equip employers to hire and retain autistic workers; and  

  • Create workplace environments in which people with autism and other intellectual and/or developmental differences can be successful and supported in pursuing their own employment goals.  

Here’s how it works:  

  1. We equip job seekers, students and new employees with autism, intellectual and/or developmental differences (I/DD) with tools and resources to empower them in employment and leadership opportunities.  
  2. We activate employers to create welcoming workplaces by hiring people with autism, intellectual and/or developmental differences, and provide the resources and tools to create a welcoming culture in which all employees can thrive.  

  3. We engage communities to raise awareness and advocate for inclusion and equity for people with autism or other differences.  

These are the key components of WIN: 

  • An accessible, inclusive digital job-sourcing platform will connect job seekers to open roles and employers to candidates outside of traditional talent pools.  

  • Participating employers can offer a digital training series to promote a welcoming workplace culture that helps autistic employees, co-workers and support staff be a part of the business’s success.  

  • Pathways events, a series of in-person or remote workshops and thought leadership conferences, will empower communities with information and insights.  

  • Participating employers can receive direct consultation on how to most effectively recruit, hire and empower a more diverse and inclusive staff.  

Workplace Inclusion Now is part of Autism Speaks commitment to Delivering Jobs, an inclusion campaign with Special Olympics, Best Buddies and the Entertainment Industry Foundation, to create 1 million pathways to employment and leadership opportunities by 2025.