Article Details

Research Database: Article Details

Citation:  Albright, J.; Kulok, S.; & Scarpa, A. (2020). A qualitative analysis of employer perspectives on the hiring and employment of adults with autism spectrum disorder. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 53 (2), 167-182.
Title:  A qualitative analysis of employer perspectives on the hiring and employment of adults with autism spectrum disorder
Authors:  Albright, J.; Kulok, S.; & Scarpa, A.
Year:  2020
Journal/Publication:  Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation
Publisher:  IOS Press
DOI:  https://doi.org/10.3233/JVR-201094
Full text:  https://content.iospress.com/articles/journal-of-vocational-rehabil...   
Peer-reviewed?  Yes
NIDILRR-funded?  Yes

Structured abstract:

Background:  Understanding factors that impact the successful employment of individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is critical to improving outcomes, including quality of life. Despite employers being critical contributors to the hiring process, the perspectives of these stakeholders have yet to be examined in the literature.
Purpose:  To understand: 1) employers’ perspectives on factors that influence the decision to hire an individual with ASD, 2) employers’ needs in order to hire and integrate an employee with ASD into the workplace, and 3) the skills employers perceive as important to workplace success.
Data collection and analysis:  Interviews were conducted with 13 employers from businesses in the United States to understand their perspectives related to the hiring and employment of individuals with ASD. Qualitative data were analyzed using a data-driven thematic approach.
Findings:  Employers identified several benefits to hiring individuals with ASD, including unique individual skills and broader workplace benefits. Employers also expressed concerns related to how ASD symptomology may negatively impact the workplace. Employers want to understand their employees and want to identify appropriate workplace accommodations in order to integrate an employee with ASD into the workplace. Finally, employers emphasized the importance of both “soft” and “hard” skills to workplace success.
Conclusions:  Although employers expressed concerns, these concerns can be addressed through employee accommodations, vocational rehabilitation programs, and disability diversity trainings. Limitations and future directions of this area of research are also addressed.

Disabilities served:  Autism / ASD
Cognitive / intellectual impairment
Developmental disabilities
Interventions:  On-the-job training and support
Vocational rehabilitation
Outcomes:  Employment acquisition
Full-time employment
Part-time employment