Work of the Future



Unlocking the potential of autistic talent by proving the value of neurodiversity

Team Lead

Rajesh Anandan

Hear the Pitch

The Problem

There are 4 million Americans on the autism spectrum, and every year, 50,000 autistic young adults turn 18 and enter the workforce. Yet 85 percent of this talent pool is unemployed or underemployed because their differences are seen as disabilities.

The Solution

Ultranauts frames autism’s neurological differences as naturally occurring variations in the brain, altering its perception from a disability to a unique ability. Ultranauts, which provides software and data testing services to Fortune 500 clients, has done this by building a highly effective team—of which 75 percent of team members are on the autism spectrum.

Ultranauts employs modern workplace norms while building neurodiverse teams. This includes remote assessments for candidate screening, online polling and customizable bots for measuring employee wellbeing, and a digital repository of all the company’s processes and norms accessible to everyone—including those unlikely to use informal channels to seek answers.

Market Opportunity

  • Software quality assurance is a mature market. However, it has high-growth niches where Ultranauts leverages the unique strengths of its talent pool, including pattern recognition and logical reasoning. The fast-growing big data analytics market, which is one of Ultranauts' main focuses, will soon surpass $200 billion.
  • Only 40 percent of differently abled US adults aged 25-54 are employed. While inclusive employment initiatives are growing, their focus on individual accommodations reinforces negative perceptions and can limit widespread adoption.

Organization Highlights

  • Continually evolved service offering and client base; in 2018, the majority of revenues will come from Fortune 500 clients for whom Ultranauts provides specialized software and data quality services including automation and analytics.
  • 75 percent of Ultranauts' employees are on the autism spectrum
  • Media: Inc, Forbes, InformationWeek, SiliconANGLE, re/code

Existing Partnerships

Ultranauts currently works with Fortune 500 firms and software companies as clients, engages with autism community groups and NGOs to source talent, and collaborates with academia to conduct research.

  • Clients: Fortune 500 firms and software companies
  • Community: 100 websites, blogs, advocacy groups, and NGOs
  • Research: Cornell University Institute on Employment and Disability

Organization Goals

Ultranauts aims to:

  • Raise $4 million in Series A funding
  • Become the premiere quality services company in the US and largest employer of autistic individuals nationwide
  • Refine and open-source Ultranauts' model to equip other employers to embrace neurodiverse talent in their business strategy

Partnership Goals

To reach these goals, Ultranauts seeks partnerships to:

  • Identify impact investors to raise $4 million in Series A funding
  • Collaborate with designers and developers to refine and publish its management practices as an open source toolkit
  • Partner with Fortune 500 firms to provide big data analytics and machine learning and AI testing services


Ultranauts has employees in 19 states across the US, and 75 percent of its team is on the autism spectrum.

Ultranauts has provided full-time employment at media, digital, and technology firms for 45 individuals with autism.

Solver Team

Organization Type:

New York, NY, USA


Working in:



Solution Team:

Economic Prosperity

Proving the Value of Neurodiversity

Solver Ultranauts, which unlocks the potential of autistic talent by proving the value of neurodiversity, received a $10,000 grant from Solve in 2018 for being selected as a Work of the Future Solver.

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