Empowering People, Launching lives

What’s possible… work experience

Vocation and employment are key pillars of our Post-19 curriculum. Our learners have the chance to develop their employability skills through practical tasks and real work. Through these placements, students can develop the skills and confidence that they will need to enter the workplace after education.

One learner, Johnny, has been attending a placement with What’s Possible Group, where he has flourished supporting with office admin tasks.

Entering a new environment, with new people and a change in routine was a challenge for Johnny. To make the transition as smooth as possible, we visited the office beforehand so that Johnny could see the environment and some of the tasks that he would be in charge of. A tailored programme was created to support him with the placement and his tasks which include restocking the fridge with soft drinks, refilling the fruit basket for staff members and collecting items and loading the dishwasher.

Since starting with What’s Possible, Johnny has made tremendous progress and is continuing to go from strength to strength, developing his independence, skills and gaining confidence. Whereas at the start he needed support with tasks, he has since become much more independent and able to complete jobs unaided. Rachel, from What’s Possible said:

“Johnny has been a pleasure to have in the workplace, always turning up with a smile and high fiving our staff.

At the beginning of his work placement Johnny was being reminded what to do for every task but is now able to pick up each week unaided with only a few prompts.

It’s been lovely to see him grow in confidence with staff members, feeling more and more comfortable, and nice that he gets excited when he comes back after a school holiday break.

We hope he continues to flourish and feel proud that we can be a part of this journey!”

Johnny enjoys his work experience, regularly discussing it at college with his Mentors and applies the skills he learns at the placement both at college and home. Johnny has indicated that taking the train to What’s Possible, restocking the soft drinks and taking the trolley in the lift are some of his favourite parts of work experience.

Placements such as this one are so important for learners like Johnny to grow the skills and confidence they need in adult life. They also enable employers to feel more confident in supporting autistic people in the workplace and see the importance of being inclusive and adopting reasonable adjustments. Just 21.7% of autistic people are in any form of paid employment, placements like this lay the foundation to help reverse this statistic.


A huge thank you to What’s Possible Group for this work experience opportunity and for the support and guidance their employees have given to Johnny. If your workplace could provide a similar opportunity, get in touch today. We’d love to hear from you.

BeyondAutism resources

If you’d like to find out more about autism in the workplace, why not take a look at our employability toolkit? It’s got loads of great information for individuals and employers about autism, inclusion and much more. You can also take our online employability training course for a more in-depth look at the topic.

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