Autistics are highly qualified for jobs requiring concentration

Unit 9900 before and after photos of suspected weapons cache.
Unit 9900 before and after photos of suspected weapons cache, spotted by autistic soldiers

Sometimes a supposed handicap can actually be an asset. Autistic people can be perfect for job requiring huge focus and attention to detail. There are employment agencies that specialize in placing autistics. The owner of one says it’s not charity. Autistics often catch problems and discrepancies the rest of us miss.

Intelligence Unit 9900 in the Israel Defense Forces uses autistics in an important and crucial role.

Special intelligence Unit 9900 is dedicated to everything related to geography, including mapping, interpretation of aerial and satellite photographs and space research. Within this unit there is a small unit of highly qualified soldiers, who have remarkable visual and analytic capabilities. They can detect even the smallest details, undetectable to most people.

The uniqueness of this elite group of intelligence soldiers in Unit 9900 lies in the fact that they are all diagnosed on the autism spectrum.

This started as a pilot project and has been successful beyond initial expectations. The autistic soldiers are completely accepted by other soldiers.

The Danish employment agency Specialisterne was started by the father of an austistic child and has found responsible jobs for autistics.

Autistic people are especially gifted for software-tests, testing mobile phone applications and general programming. But Sonne also sees a lot of potential in the tax or auditing sector. GlobalConnect has recently tested some candidates of Specialsterne. The firm is extremely pleased with their performance: “Our test people are extremely meticulous in their work. This is very important as these tests have no fault tolerance,” says the Manager of GlobalConnect.

To reiterate, in both instances austistics did a better job than they rest of us would.

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