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IBM Neurodiversity Program 2021

Please note that all applications have now closed for this opportunity

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At IBM, work is more than a job – it is a calling.  To build. To design. To code. To consult. To think along with the clients and sell. To make markets. To invest. To collaborate. Not just to do something better, but to attempt things you’ve never thought possible.  To lead in this new era of technology and solve some of the world’s most challenging problems. Let’s put smart to work.

Specialisterne is excited to be partnering again with IBM to deliver the second IBM Neurodiversity Program for roles at the Ballarat Client Innovation Centre.

Specialisterne Australia offers an alternative pathway for people on the autism spectrum to connect with employers who recognise and value the contributions and talents that individuals on the spectrum can bring to their organisations.

Specialisterne exists because autistic candidates are being overlooked for employment, largely due to the many barriers that autistic candidates come up against when competing for employment in typical recruitment practices.

For almost 3 years, Specialisterne has been working with IBM to continue to look to create an end-to-end recruitment and employee support framework that removes those typically found barriers, and replaces them with practical, demonstrative assessments and activities whereby candidates, over a patient process, have the opportunity to:


  • better understand the requirements of the roles they are competing for to assess if they are the right opportunities for them
  • meet IBM team members and managers throughout the process
  • connect with IBM’ers who have previously gained employment via this program
  • demonstrate through practical assessments and activities their motivation and suitability for the available roles over a patient process
  • ‘show’ what they can do (not just tell someone what you can do)

IBM Neurodiversity Program 2021

10 x Roles Available

  • Business Analyst
  • Data Analyst
  • Application Developer
  • Test Specialist
  • DevOps Specialist
  • Operations Specialist

“For us to stay innovative and forward thinking and cutting edge, we need to have as many brains as possible and this is a great talent source of people who think differently.”

Belinda Sheehan

Neurodiversity Program Manager, IBM

Watch this short video by Belinda Sheehan from IBM to learn about the types of roles available and working at IBM Client Innovation Centre in Ballarat.

Location of roles

These roles are offered in Ballarat, VIC only, however applicants prepared to relocate to Ballarat for employment with IBM are encouraged to apply.

* If you are applying from outside of the greater Ballarat region and would require relocating, please consider the various factors and government incentives associated with relocating. Note that because of COVID-19 social distancing restrictions in common workplaces in Victoria, some of the roles may require that you initially work remotely from home for a period of time.

Applicant Requirements

Nice to have

  • Motivated, focussed and strong attention to detail
  • Drive and eagerness to learn
  • A passion for technology and innovation
  • Ability to work autonomously, take initiative and work as part of an agile team environment
  • Obtained a TAFE Qualification or Bachelors Degree in Information Technology; Computer Science; Network Security; Data and Analytics; Mathematics; Statistics; Engineering; Business; Software Development; Cyber Security or related disciplines or have relatable real-world experience in same or similar fields
  • A strong interest in any of the following: Systems Testing, Applications Development, Data Analytics, Systems Analysis, Business Analysis, Systems Administration, Cyber Security, Cloud Computing (AWS, Azure, Linux, Docker, Kubernetes), DevOps, Networking, Engineering, Business.
  • An understanding of programming languages and/or development and production environments such as – Python, Java, JavaScript, SQL, C#, C++, Ruby, C, Node.js/Express, React.js, Vue.js, Angular, MySQL, PostgreSQL, SAS, SPSS, Matlab, Oracle, Apache (Server, Hadoop, Maven, Spark, Tomcat, etc.), Jenkins, Gradle, BPMN, UML, SoapUI, Selenium, and other desirable languages, vendors or tools


Must have

  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Must have a diagnosis of autism (including Autism Spectrum Disorder; Asperger’s Syndrome; Autistic Disorder or PDD-NOS)
  • Must have proof of Australian Citizenship or Permanent Residency and agree to IBM background checks
  • All candidates must be able to undergo a police check, and some will require a government clearance.
  • Must be able to participate in the entire Specialisterne Workshop and Assessment Centre process (dates listed in the table below)

Application Process

Before you can apply for jobs through Specialisterne Australia, you must first register with us as an eligible candidate using the form below.  You only need to do this once, existing candidates already registered using this form can proceed to login at the candidate portal.  To commence the application process please make sure you have the required documents stated below:


  1. Evidence of an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) diagnosis. Evidence could be a Diagnostic Assessment or a letter from a treating medical practitioner.
  1. Proof of Australian Citizenship or Permanent Residence Visa. Accepted documents are one of the following:
  • Australian Birth Certificate
  • Current Australian Passport
  • Certificate of Australian Citizenship
  • Permanent Residency Visa in Australia (excluding bridging visas)


Upload your documents using the form provided on this page below.  A member of our team will check your eligibility and you will then be sent a link to complete an online application with Specialisterne Australia.  After you have completed your application, you will be sent a link to the candidate portal to upload supporting documents.


If you have already registered as an eligible candidate with Specialisterne Australia using the form below, you can login to your account in the candidate portal to apply for the jobs or opportunities you are most interested in. A link to the candidate portal is contained in the form provided on this page below.

Shortlisted applicants will be invited to participate in a 1-day practical screening workshop where they will find out more about the roles and undertake activities and assessments to determine their suitability for the various IBM opportunities.

Following the 1-day workshop, Specialisterne will select a number of candidates to advance to the final stage of the recruitment process, the Candidate Assessment Centre. This is a four-week program where candidates will be involved in a range of activities and assessments delivered by Specialisterne and IBM Hiring Managers.

Selected candidates will be invited to an optional Information Session for the 4 Week Assessment Centre.  Candidates will have the option to either attend the IBM Centre in Ballarat or connect virtually for this session on the 9th April 2021 (11:30am – 1:00pm)

At the conclusion of the Candidate Assessment Centre activities, successful candidates will be offered employment with IBM. If you are unsuccessful, you may be considered for other Specialisterne opportunities.

Both the Screening Workshops and Candidate Assessment Centre activities will be delivered online in a virtual assessment centre environment and therefore candidates are expected to have use of their own computer with a webcam and microphone, and have access to the internet for the duration of the program.

Program Timeline

  • Applications Open – 8th February 2021 0% 0%
  • Applications Close – 12th March 2021 10% 10%
  • Notification to attend the Pre-Selection Workshop – from 17th March 2021 20% 20%
  • Pre-Selection Workshop – Week of 22nd March – 25th March 2021 30% 30%
  • Notification to attend Program – From 1st – 7th April 2021 40% 40%
  • Information Session for the 4 Week Assessment Centre – 9th April 2021 (11:30am – 1:00pm) 45% 45%
  • Week 1 Candidate Assessment Centre – 12th April – 16th 2021 50% 50%
  • Week 2 Candidate Assessment Centre – 19th April – 23rd April 2021 60% 60%
  • Week 3 Candidate Assessment Centre – 26th April – 30th April 2021 70% 70%
  • Week 4 Candidate Assessment Centre – 3rd May – 7th May 2021 80% 80%
  • Successful candidates notified of job offers – From 14th May 2021 90% 90%
  • Successful candidates commence employment – From June/July 2021 100% 100%

IBM Diversity Statement

We’re committed to building a diverse and inclusive workforce in all its forms. We encourage applicants from diverse gender, cultural and linguistic backgrounds and applicants who may be living with a disability. We also offer flexibility in all our roles, to ensure everyone can participate.

We champion people with diverse abilities and the previously untapped potential they bring to the workplace. This includes neurodiversity, a concept where neurological differences are to be recognized and respected as any other human variation. This includes Autism, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity, Dyscalculia, Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, Tourette’s Syndrome, and many other neurological differences. We are dedicated to hiring, supporting, educating and embracing people of all abilities. –

Inclusion at IBM

Diverse teams are critical to making better business decisions and feeding innovation. At IBM, diversity and inclusion is not only a set of policies and programs—it’s essential to our business strategy and for our company’s culture to thrive…and for society overall.

Everyone deserves to thrive because of who they are – not despite who they are. To me, fostering diversity and inclusion is about ensuring everyone feels safe and appreciated to bring their full identity to work.

More than ever before, it’s important we acknowledge the driving forces behind a more diverse and inclusive society, and consider our role in contributing to them.

Katrina Troughton
Managing Director
IBM Australia & New Zealand

Please Note: All applications must go through Specialisterne Australia. Our corporate partners do not handle applications directly.

Applications Closing









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