National Australia Bank taps into autism talent
Dan has been working at National Australia Bank as an analyst for 5 months now, and is loving it.
“The thing I like most about the role is the chance to fix things. Anything where there is a problem, that can be tackled and corrected, I love that kind of stuff” said Dan.
“It is mostly analysing numbers, we have lots of numbers stored in the network and I do lots of different things with them to produce a numerical output.”
As a young adult on the autism spectrum, Dan turned to the employment team at Autism Spectrum Australia (Aspect) for guidance.
Results from Aspect’s “We Belong” research study recently reported 46% of adults on the spectrum identified as being unemployed, compared with 5-9% of the general population in Australia.
“I wouldn’t even have considered applying for NAB bank if it hadn’t been for Aspect, it was entirely their idea. I was struggling in my professional development and I couldn’t see how I was going to get from where I was to where I wanted to go. With this role, there is a much clearer path and I can see a future for myself.”
The team at Aspect offer employers training, mentoring and recruitment support, to create job opportunities for a talent pool of individuals on the autism spectrum.
“NAB has made several adjustments to the role to help me settle in. The work schedule is slightly different, I come in and work slightly later hours, and I am working part time rather than full time. And there is a general attitude of understanding, so I know that I can go to them with any issues or accommodations that I need.”
Peter Roberts, National Australia Bank General Manager, Finance, Markets says the partnership has been “win-win”.
“We have got a great opportunity to tap into talent like Daniel, and there are multiple areas across the bank that can use their skills and experiences.”
“The team are really excited to have Daniel amongst the team, and some of the work being produced is of the highest quality. It’s a win-win for everyone. We have learnt that this is something we want to do more of, it plays to the core values of us as an organisation and as an employer and I am really proud of where we have got to in such short period of time.”
“The most important thing we have learnt is that this program has challenged us, as staff and employers, on how we can make a meaningful difference. It has actually been quite simple, with some really good conversations with Daniel and the great work of Aspect helping us along.”
“It doesn’t take much, just a bit of support, a bit of motivation and it can make a great difference for everyone. At NAB, we have just learnt that small steps can make a big difference.”
For more info about Aspect’s employment programs, visit autismspectrum.org.au or call 1800 277 328.
Research from “We Belong” published in Shining a Light on the Autism Spectrum Experiences and Aspirations of Adults, By Debra Costley, Susanna Baldwin, Susan Bruck, Kaaren Haas, Kerry Ritzrow, 2017 – Routledge.