Only 20% of adults on the autism spectrum are employed, with most in underpaid, underemployed positions.
This post will share some resources for you to get started in your search for meaningful work, whether you are interested in finding and/or creating the job you want.
To be honest, this is a tricky and somewhat challenging area to delve into.
For those of you who already have done some research in this area, either for yourself or for the autistic adult in your life, there already are not a plethora of jobs available to choose from (an understatement, I know), but you do know that possibly a nontraditional type of job is calling you, interests you, or may be your next best bet.
Here are some tips to guide you in the process of finding a nice job (and a niche job:
Complete career interest inventories to grow your self-awareness of what types of niches are of interest to you, what could be a good fit, and to maintain your motivation as you search
Look at job boards all over the place (Indeed, Linked In, your local community) and create a job alert for niches of interest
Get in touch with small businesses in your town or online that are in your job interest area. These settings are often great places to work for employees on the autism spectrum - more individualization, more inclusion, and more opportunities to delve into a niche area
Get creative about job opportunities and work environments - are there ways you can expand a role into a similar area or niche that you’re interested in?
A growing movement in the autism community is starting a micro-enterprise.
This is essentially self-employment or starting a small business with your family, a small group of other families and/or like-minded individuals.
Related reading: What is a Micro-Enterprise?
This is probably the most direct way to create your own niche job.
As a business owner, the ideal way to build a business from the ground up is to center on the problems and needs of a niche.
You can also focus on an area of interest, like woodworking, art, science fiction as it relates to another area.
For example, creating props for a local comic con.
Related reading: Woodworking and Autism