When a leading bank needed help testing a new app, it hired a small Autism2Work team. After seeing the results, it doubled the size of the team.
An American multinational investment bank and financial services company headquartered in New York City was committed to increasing the diversity of its workforce and specifically wanted to boost the number of individuals on the autism spectrum on its teams. Understanding that a diverse workforce drives innovation, competitive advantage, and organizational effectiveness, the firm developed a diversity program, but it lacked the know-how to make it happen. It needed help recruiting, training and integrating individuals on the autism spectrum into the wide variety of distinct cultures across the organization.
Building a Testing Team
With the help of the Autism2Work program, the firm identified a pilot project that would include an experienced quality assurance team lead and four autistic quality assurance testers. The team would be assigned to test a web-based, client-facing application that processed mortgage originations. The testing included manually executing approximately 200 test cases in a continuous regression agile environment with daily code updates.
Autism2Work used its specially structured recruiting and interviewing process to find four qualified local candidates. Once hired, the individuals received significant on-boarding support, on-the-job training and cultural integration guidance. The associates then completed 100 hours of client compliance and application training to prepare them for the technical aspects of the work.
The Autism2Work program supported the firm by managing the project on an ongoing basis, directly supervising the team members and ensuring deliverables were met. As a part of the engagement, the managers and employees of the relevant financial services teams received autism educational training to help the new hires integrate smoothly into the work environment.
After just three months, the new testing team met or exceeded the metrics of their neurotypical peers with two or more years of experience. After six months, the financial services firm decided to add 18 Autism2Work quality assurance associates to the same mortgage group and more in other geographic locations later that year. The very next year, the firm continued to expand the program by adding Autism2Work team members for teams in access management, user acceptance testing, and software development.
The program was so successful that the firm extended permanent job offers to 32 A2W team members who now work in full-time positions in a variety of roles, including business analyst and cybersecurity specialist.
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