Financial Services DE&I Trends

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Financial Services DE&I Trends

Key Takeaways

  • To encourage diversity, inclusion, and equity, Citi uses the affinity model, including affinity groups like Black Heritage, Asian Heritage, Citi Women, and Pride (LGBTQ).
  • The company also operates various initiatives to help it adhere to the pay equity principle. For example, City is committed to reducing its raw pay gap by increasing representation at the Assistant Vice President through Managing Director levels to at least 40% for women globally and 8% for Black employees in the U.S. by the end of 2021.
  • To foster disability inclusion, Citi's CEO Mike Corbat signed on to The Valuable 500, a global movement that puts disability on the business leadership agenda.
  • Blackstone launched the Blackstone Diverse Professionals Network to create an inclusive community of diverse employees, by expanding and enhancing the recruitment and retention of underrepresented minorities.

Introduction

Two examples of financial services companies working towards diversity, inclusion, and equity through systemic processes and functions are Citi and Blackstone. Citi uses affinity groups and a pay equity program to foster diversity and inclusivity. Blackstone uses the Diverse Professionals Network and Future Women Leaders Program to encourage equity and diversity. Details are below.

Citi

  • Citi is a global bank whose mission is to provide financial services to advance growth and economic progress. The bank is an example of a financial services company working towards diversity, inclusion, and equity through systemic processes and functions rather than simply hiring a visibly diverse workforce.
  • Citi is working towards diversity, inclusion, and equity through the following programs:
  • Affinity groups

    • To enable an inclusive and equitable culture at Citi, the company uses the expertise of its leaders and the uniqueness of its employees in affinity groups. Company executives from the CEO’s leadership team lead ten affinity groups that represent the wide-ranging demographics of its employees.
    • The affinities are Black Heritage, Asian Heritage, Citi Salutes (Military Veterans), Disability: Enabling Diverse Abilities, Citi Women, Generations, Multicultural, Hispanic/Latino Heritage, Parents, and Pride (LGBTQ).
    • Citi's leaders use the affinity model to develop a better understanding and appreciation of how unique every employee is and drive change in the company's policies, culture, and practices, creating a more diverse and inclusive workplace.
    • The Affinities also contribute to the company's efforts to hire, promote, and retain diverse talent while also advocating for and engaging employees.

    Pay Equity

    • Pay equity is a fundamental principle at Citi. The company uses various initiatives to help it adhere to the pay equity principle. For example, it is regularly evaluating market conditions to help inform what it pays its workers. Citi also conducts rigorous yearly reviews of pay recommendations as part of its annual compensation process.
    • In addition, Citi regularly assesses and compares the pay of its male and female employees and U.S. minorities to non-minorities. A recent analysis was carried out in the U.S., the United Kingdom, and Germany, including factors like job level, job function, and geography. The company found that "women are paid on average 99% of what men are paid, and minorities are paid on average 99% of what non-minorities are paid."
    • The company's 2021 raw gap analysis revealed that the "median pay for women globally is better than 74% of the median for men, up from 73% in 2019 and 71% in 2018." The data also showed that "the median pay for U.S. minorities is around 94% of the median for non-minorities, which is similar to 2021 figures and up from 93% in 2018."
    • City is committed to reducing its raw pay gap by increasing representation at the Assistant Vice President through Managing Director levels to at least 40% for women globally and 8% for Black employees in the U.S. by the end of 2021.
    • While Citi has made increases to close the gap for women and U.S. minority workers, it also plans to adjust compensation for other groups of workers where the analysis revealed that increases were needed.
    • The company hopes that focusing on pay equity will propel it into being the employer of choice for employees of diverse backgrounds. It also hopes to attract and retain the best talent and reward performance consistent with its Leadership Standards.

    Unconscious Bias Training

    • Citi is building the right company culture by addressing unconscious bias in its workplace. The company has invested in the initiative by creating and launching training that enables participants to recognize the importance of an inclusive work environment and identify instances of unconscious bias.
    • The unconscious bias training program also aims to take actions that improve on-the-job decision-making to support Citi's culture of inclusion, leaderships, and ethics.
    • Citi is advancing racial equity by embedding it in all processes and business functions. After George Floyd’s murder, the company held conversations, events, and education forums on the history of racism and the Black experience. The events were aimed at publicly condemning racism and taking a stand against the vice.

    Disability Inclusion

    • Citi has committed to disability inclusion at its workplace. The company wishes to see all its employees feel welcome and supported to reach their full potential, despite having a disability.
    • In early 2020, Citi's then CEO Mike Corbat signed on to The Valuable 500, a global movement that puts disability on the business leadership agenda.
    • Corbat stated that Citi's commitment to disability inclusion was the reason it joined The Valuable 500 as its mission was "vital to strengthening corporate inclusivity across the world."

    Promotion Paths

    • Citi is striving to better understand the best practices in solving the issue of representation and pay equity for women by working to increase minority representation at more senior levels of the company.
    • For example, the company's continued investment and focus on promotion paths has led to over 28% of its Country Officers or country business heads being female, and the company's ultimate goal is to increase the figure to 50%.
    • Citi offers its employees access to various career development and learning resources. It offers a six months Diversity Leadership Program for high-potential women and U.S. minority leaders to help build confidence, executive presence, and strategic skills.
    • The company also offers a four-day Citi Women’s Leadership Development program to high-performing female directors worldwide. Participants are allowed to network and given learning opportunities.
    • Finally, its global Risk group offers a 12 monthly program to strengthen the pipeline of women for leadership roles. Women in Risk participants identify career goals, implement a customized career developing plan, and expand visibility through networking opportunities.

Blackstone

Diverse Professionals Network

Women’s Initiative

  • The company created the Blackstone Women’s Initiative, an employee resource group that supports gender inclusion. It drives innovative programs geared towards the developing women to their full potential, encouraging mentorship, fostering connectivity across businesses, and helping shape the company's women's recruiting strategy.
  • The Women's Initiative offers a C-suite speaker series, networking events & service opportunities, and a quarterly newsletter, geared towards gender inclusion at Blackstone.

Future Women Leaders Program

  • Blackstone seeks to encourage more women to join the financial services industry and get into leadership positions using the Future Women Leaders Program.
  • The program uses interactive information seminars, networking, and skill-building sessions to provide participants with early exposure to finance and business. It targets freshmen and sophomores interested in exploring a career in the financial services industry.
  • The program holds an event that begins with a welcome dinner with senior Blackstone leadership. This is followed by a resume workshop, a networking lunch, a Blackstone analysts panel, and concludes with one-on-one mentoring sessions for attendees with Blackstone professionals.

BX WIN

  • Blackstone offers the BX WIN program that pairs women hired through its campus recruiting efforts with junior and senior mentors across the firm.
  • Blackstone has also made important appointments to strengthen its diversity department. In June 2021, the company appointed Devin Glenn as the new Global Head of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Glenn will continue the implementation of policies and initiatives to help the company achieve a more diverse and inclusive workplace.

Research Strategy

To provide two examples of financial services companies working towards diversity, inclusion, and equity through systemic processes and functions, rather than simply trying to hire a visibly diverse workforce, we leveraged the most reputable sources, including websites for financial companies (Citi), diversity annual reports, and financial reports from platforms like Investopedia.

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