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Diversity supports better workplaces

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A diverse workforce, that includes people with disability, makes for a better working environment, according to Business Development Support Officer Tim Hocking.

The 25-year-old has Asperger’s syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder that affects understanding of other’s emotions and social behaviour.

“What people know to do automatically, like look into people’s faces for instance, I’ve had to learn,” Tim said.

The Woodbridge resident said that having a diverse workforce ensured employees could learn to see things from different perspectives.

“Diversity means problems can be detected, solved and improvements made,” Tim said.

“A diverse workforce also means workplaces can serve our diverse community better.”

Tim said employers, contemplating employing a person with disability, should concentrate on that person’s skills and abilities.

“We are often eager to learn and work and often have pride in doing good work to the best of our abilities,” he said. 

Tim has worked at the Department of Finance and its predecessor, the Department of Treasury and Finance, for about six years.

“I started as a business trainee in the Business Analysis team of the Government Procurement Business unit,” Tim said.

“In 2010 I became a permanent employee as a Business Development and Support Officer in the Business Development team.”

Tim said his position gave him a sense of belonging, his colleagues were friendly and supportive and he enjoyed feeling needed and being financially independent.

He lives with his parents and younger brother and will soon move into his own apartment in Maylands.    

In his spare time, Tim reads books and digital publications, watches videos and listens to podcasts about science, particularly about space, weather and nature, and enjoys being around animals, camping and travelling.

Technology, particularly computing, mobile devices and gadgets, are also a particular interest, and he now is completing a Diploma in Web Design and Technology.