CAI and Specialisterne Announce National Partnership to Employ People with Autism

Specialisterne USA has secured yet another global IT partner committed to employing people with autism.  CAI, a global Information Technology consulting, outsourcing and systems integration company announced May 29, 2013 a National Founding Partnership with Specialisterne USA to train and hire people with autism. With over 800 associates in the Delaware Valley, and 3,300 in the U.S., CAI plans that, before the end of 2015, over 3% of its consultant workforce will be people with autism, in technology roles such as software testing, data quality assurance, programming, data mining and data entry.

Like Specialisterne, CAI sees an innovative opportunity to leverage the unique talents of people with autism, while providing them a roadmap to develop meaningful IT careers. In the USA, it is estimated that one in every 88 people are impacted by autism.

“We are thrilled by this opportunity to work with CAI as our Founding Partner on this national partnership”, said Specialisterne Founder and Board Chairman Thorkil Sonne. “This partnership will not only create a significant number of new jobs in the Delaware Valley, but also throughout the United States, given CAI’s broad reach and capabilities. CAI and Specialisterne have very similar cultures and this is a great fit for us as we launch our U.S. operations” said Sonne.

CAI and Specialisterne have already started several projects to employ individuals with autism, including one with the State of Delaware Department of Health and Social Services.

“People are defined by their ability, not by their disability. Creating jobs means creating jobs for people of all abilities,” said Governor Jack Markell. “By employing individuals with autism, CAI is utilizing unique talents to strengthen its own bottom line. Now, more than ever, our state and our nation’s competitiveness rely on using our full potential – everyone’s full potential. Many individuals with autism have the time, talent and desire to make meaningful contributions to interested employers.”

“I credit Governor Markell (Delaware Governor Jack Markell) and Secretary Landgraf (Delaware Health and Social Services Cabinet Secretary Rita Landgraf) for bringing CAI and Specialisterne together to begin this journey”, said CAI Managing Director Ernie Dianastasis. “As one of the largest IT firms in the Delaware Valley, we have a passion toward giving back to the community, particularly in the disabilities space. The opportunity to leverage our IT size and best practices in areas such as software testing, programming and data entry by employing individuals with autism was a no-brainer for us. This partnership will enable us to employ a significant number of folks with autism.”

Delaware Health and Social Services also welcome the partnership.

“At DHSS, we are proud to work with CAI and Specialisterne on a project that will employ people with autism,” Secretary Rita Landgraf said. “To us, this ongoing partnership is about the power of opportunities. It will mean employment opportunities for individuals with high-functioning autism spectrum disorders. CAI will experience the opportunity to benefit from the special skills of individuals with autism spectrum disorders. And the people of Delaware will benefit from greater inclusion in our society. We celebrate CAI and Specialisterne for making this opportunity a reality for individuals who are full of ability.”

CAI is a multi-million dollar global IT consulting and services firm that employs 3,300 associates, over 800 of which report into the Wilmington, Delaware office serving the Delaware Valley. CAI has operations in Europe, Asia, Africa and North America.