Valuing everyone's contribution isn't just something we talk about. It's what we put into practice each day. We respect one another and are focused on creating an inclusive environment that reflects the different backgrounds, experiences, ideas and perspectives of our employees. Our commitment to building a diverse and inclusive environment is foundational to our SPIRIT Values that guide how we interact every day. We believe each person is accountable for creating and sustaining an inclusive work environment. Three areas guide our actions and drive progress: leadership accountability, employee awareness, and processes and programs.
Leading from the Top
We believe leadership is the single most important factor in making meaningful progress in this space. Leaders around the globe create programs that are unique to their locations. For example, the Australia business unit leads targeted efforts to foster an inclusive work environment. In 2018, they worked with the Curtis Island ferry company to implement a secondary ferry schedule at a later morning time to help employees manage personal commitments such as childcare arrangements. In addition, they, and other business units across our operations, have focused on the following:
- Delivering training on topics like diversity of thought and unconscious bias.
- Implementing incremental changes to enhance flexible work policies.
- Offering programs intended to increase employment and development opportunities for underrepresented groups.
- Hosting quarterly diversity and inclusion town hall conversations with business unit presidents.
We actively monitor diversity on a global basis and publicly report representation of women and minorities in our workforce and in leadership roles. In 2018, 36% of our board of directors, 26% of our employees and 22% of our leaders were women. Global leaders also track and review their data to identify focus areas, which vary by region.
Every employee has access to resources like employee network groups and inclusion training. For more than 30 years, our employee networks have provided an important forum for discussion, development and connection to our communities. These networks are led by employees with guidance and involvement from leadership. Open to all employees, these groups raise awareness about important topics and help influence change.
Training on topics that help create a more inclusive environment, such as unconscious bias, is available to all employees. In 2018, we sent a pilot group of leaders to participate in Catalyst’s MARC (Men Advocating Real Change) program. Based on positive feedback, we are sending additional leaders from across our global operations to the program in 2019.
We link our inclusion efforts to our daily activities. During the recruiting and selection process, we bring in diverse candidates and create balanced interview teams to mitigate unconscious bias. In 2018, we developed an inclusive hiring course. This course assists hiring managers in recognizing bias and its impact on the staffing process while providing strategies to mitigate bias and make objective hiring decisions. In the U.S., we’ve also eliminated salary history inquiries from our hiring process.
To continue building a diverse candidate pool, we work with Getting Hired to share job opportunities with individuals and veterans with disabilities, and DirectEmployers to ensure job postings are promoted through a variety of diverse organizations. In 2018, we worked with the Norwegian Labor and Welfare Administration to help two migrants who were granted asylum in the country prepare to enter the labor force. Our Norway IT team hosted the individuals, providing them with on-the-job training, work experience, and opportunities to improve their language capabilities and learn about the country’s culture through social interaction.
Hiring veterans is also a key piece of our talent strategy. As a military-friendly employer, we help military personnel and their families’ transition by offering challenging and rewarding projects around the world. In 2018, members of our Williston operations and Human Resources teams visited Minot Air Force Base in North Dakota to speak with 40 soon-to-be transitioning veterans about our hiring process, benefits, career development, job opportunities and the path to employment. Globally, our leaders participate in 16 Talent Management Teams that review employee development and career progression by skills and location.
Most locations offer flexible work schedules to help employees balance personal and work responsibilities. In the U.S., we’ve worked to equalize our policies by offering parental leave to fathers, mothers, domestic partners and adoptive parents.
We identify and facilitate opportunities to utilize products and services from businesses owned by women and minorities. Our supplier diversity team builds relationships with diverse suppliers and provides guidance to position them for current or future projects.
The Human Rights Campaign’s 2018 Corporate Equality Index recognized us for our commitment to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality in the workplace. In 2018, we also were named as a Best Employer for Diversity by Forbes and listed as one of the Top 25 Companies for Diversity by the Texas Diversity Council.
While we have been recognized for our inclusion efforts, we know that it takes ongoing commitment to make sustainable progress. So, we continue to provide training, build awareness and reinforce accountability at all levels of the organization and focus on behaviors and processes that build an environment where everyone has the opportunity to succeed.