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SAP Launches Autism at Work programme in New Zealand

08 May 2018

SAP New Zealand has launched Autism at Work, an initiative that enables people with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) to find qualified employment in the company.

The announcement came at the HR Connect 2018 conference in Auckland, where local and global experts in people and culture discuss how to connect people to purpose.

“At SAP, we focus on everyone’s unique ability to contribute, rather than a person’s perceived limitations,” says SAP SE chief diversity and inclusion officer Anka Wittenberg.

“By embracing differences, we help spark innovation – while challenging assumptions and inspiring change. Those on the autism spectrum, for example, add enormous value as they often have high-levels of attention to detail in software development and testing, and data analysis as well as other roles in our company such as customer support and marketing.

“It’s fantastic that this award-winning programme continues to expand with the SAP New Zealand launch. This will enable the market to not only drive change within New Zealand, with the launch of the programme here, our intent is to drive greater employment across all sectors and industries.”

Launched in 2013, the programme currently includes over 120 colleagues filling over 22 different positions, and is active in ten countries: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, the Czech Republic, Germany, India, Ireland and the United States.

SAP has an aspirational corporate goal to create opportunities for 650 colleagues on the autism spectrum.

Following on from the launch of the programme in Australia in 2015, SAP New Zealand will be the eleventh country to integrate people with autism into the workforce.

SAP New Zealand will be supported locally by the DXC Dandelion Program and for recruitment and onboarding by Life Without Barriers, JobLife Employment, a leading social enterprise working in more than 440 communities across Australia and New Zealand.

“It’s a pleasure to support SAP’s Autism at Work programme in Australia and New Zealand through the partnership we announced at the United Nations in 2015,” says DXC Dandelion Program executive Michael Fieldhouse.

“Through our partnership, we share information, delivery partners and research that helps improve and innovate our own programmes but also, together, helps promote these types of programmes to other organisations globally.”

Life Without Barriers chief executive Claire Robbs adds, “People with a disability who find sustainable employment benefit from greater independence, increased self-confidence and a number of other positive impacts such as improved overall well-being and social participation. This is a great opportunity to work with SAP and DXC Technology to help assist people on the autism spectrum to find employment opportunities within these organisations and beyond.”

Interested candidates and organisations should contact SAP New Zealand to learn how to apply and for further information.

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