The future is upon us, and the advancement of new technology has created the need for new ways to understand it. Atlanta-based Verusen is helping to spearhead this future with its latest partnership. The company is joining forces with New York-based Daivergent to bring a team of neurodiverse talent into its AI-focused workforce.
“AI and machine learning always gets pinned … for taking away jobs,” Paul Noble, Verusen’s founder and CEO, told Built In. “I think this is a great example that we wanted to promote that new technologies open up opportunities.”
In time with the evolution of today’s workforce, Verusen is working to streamline the supply chain industry with automation tech. The company strives to eliminate challenges along the supply chain with the help of machine learning processes, work that aligns well with individuals whose strengths lie in detail-oriented tasks.
Daivergent is a technology platform that sources, assesses and upskills high potential talent with autism and neurodiversity, according to co-founder and CEO Byran Dai. The company also works with employers like Verusen to help them become familiar with neurodiversity, and then outfits those employers with the tools they need to support that talent.
Dai and Noble met, at the SAP.IO accelerator program for their respective startups. The two bonded over their shared connection to relatives with neurodiversity and autism, namely Dai’s brother and Noble’s godson and nephew. As they enter young adulthood, the question of career options arose. Even though 20 percent of the U.S. population is made up of neurodiverse individuals, up to 85 percent of this group is underemployed or unemployed.
Actively combatting this statistic, Verusen has since worked to build a company that is reflective of diversity, equity and inclusivity. As it continues to grow within the AI-powered supply chain management space, an industry that’s projected to be worth $16.7 billion by 2027, Verusen is tapping into the pool of trained data specialists Daivergent has to offer.
“What you’re starting to see is a lot more of an openness in this industry towards exploring these untapped areas of talent that have maybe traditionally in the past been more overlooked because they weren’t perceived as competitive,” Dai told Built In. “But really recognizing that with neurodiversity, if you can provide upskilling, if you can provide a level of accessibility, as well as awareness building … if you can kind of be that conduit, you can start to actually connect communities together.”
Daivergent has found that those with neurodiversity and autism actually have strengths that excel in certain areas of the tech labor market, according to Dai, such as cybersecurity, AI, data and operations. When it comes to tasks that involve complex and detail-oriented work, these individuals often outperform those who are considered to be neurotypical employees. In today’s increasingly digital world, more career opportunities are arising for millions of individuals across the country.
As part of its new partnership with Daivergent, Verusen will onboard five to 10 new additions to its team, according to Noble. The company recently doubled its headcount to about 70 people and plans to grow to over 100 by the end of this year. Verusen is currently hiring across all departments.
“This [intersects] with a cultural moment where neurodiversity now is beginning to take the place of this kind of deficit model when it comes to autism, when it comes to dyslexia, when it comes to ADHD,” Dai said. “You’re seeing that now there is this neurodiversity model which is acknowledging differences in that mindset, which we’re excited to see. ... We’re really proud to see something like Verusen and Paul and the whole team stepping up and [saying], ‘We want to be advancing this movement as well.’”