Investing in talent is key to the continued growth of our company. We foster a culture at Equinix where our employees can be their whole selves at work while discovering meaningful careers and doing the best work of their lives. Our focus on talent includes developing pathways to reach diverse communities, building robust platforms to connect and engage with new talent, and continually improving the employee experience while maintaining our culture and values. We want to create a virtuous cycle of attracting, hiring and developing the very best talent that represents the diversity of our world, supports our organizational goals, and does what it takes to create a more accessible, equitable and sustainable future.
We are focused on creating multiple pathways to reach new talent from diverse communities. In 2021, we forged partnerships and invested in tools and systems to grow and support our inclusive hiring practices. Through updates within recruitment marketing tools and efforts, we can more effectively reach a wider and more diverse candidate pool. These efforts contribute to a growing and resilient talent pipeline that enables us to scale our efforts at every level where we are looking for talent.
In 2021, we continued to focus on ensuring positive and fair hiring processes. Beginning with bias mitigation training for our hiring teams, we establish the importance of creating diverse pools of candidates.
We revamped our selection process to ensure greater parity for historically underrepresented communities. Our standardized interview process includes craft demonstration and interview questions that focus on transferable skills such as problem-solving, rather than industry-specific questions, which can be exclusionary to some candidates. We will implement this approach for all new-to-career hiring across the company over the course of the next year.
We take a global stance to implementing guidelines and best practices around new hire offers that promote a consistent process. When determining new hire compensation, we do not take into consideration the current salary of a candidate nor increases based on previous salary—offers are determined based on the value a candidate job brings to Equinix. We partner with hiring compensation managers to determine the offer based on the following considerations:
In 2021, we launched new tools to allow us to attract candidates with customized recruitment events, campaign landing pages and create customized email campaigns to improve candidate experience. We also implemented a candidate AI and matching tool, HiredScore, to harness the power of AI to source, score, and match for efficiency and optimization. HiredScore pulls in top matched candidates/leads from Clinch, our application tracking system, Workday, and other sourcing avenues for the job requisition and allows recruiters to score and analyze leads without bias. These tools allow us to build different talent communities and improve sourcing and recruiter efficiency.
Our new recruitment marketing efforts provide our hiring teams visibility into optimal hiring channels for specific locations and regions while allowing personalized, inclusive and targeted communications at each step of the hiring process. In addition to onboarding Clinch, we launched global media campaigns to attract candidates beyond the current candidate pool. Since launch, we have attracted 33,000+ unique candidates to our communities.
We are increasing the ways we engage with our talent communities. Hosting events, leveraging diversity partnerships, and partnering with our EECNs help us reach targeted communities. These changes to our recruitment marketing approach have increased the diversity of our candidate pools, resulting in increased hiring of qualified diverse candidates.
Our Pathways Program was founded to open new pipelines for historically underrepresented communities, improve equity and accelerate the hiring of diverse talent. The program is made up of six initiatives–Career Transition Program, Returners Program, Military Programs, Disability Initiative, Athlete Career Transition (ACT) and Government Training Initiatives–that target the occupational communities as described below. Each initiative is resourced with internal talent acquisition professionals who focus on recruiting and connecting candidates within that specific community to open positions at Equinix.
An Opportunity for professionalsn returning to work after a career gap (maternity leave, caretaker role, sick leave,etc.)
Hiring from outside of the data center industry by a competency, aptitude and potential assessment in line with industry requirements
Increasing community support and reducing stigmas around disability hiring. Creating awareness and education around inclusive hiring.
An Opportunity for Service members and spouses to gain valuable civilian work experience through specific industry training, apprenticeships, or internships.
Elite athlete, Paralympians, and Olympian's success is built on values, mind-set and determination, which can be transferred to a variety of business environments.
These program are focused on building skillset in order to diversify and increase workforce opportunities.
For example, in 2021, our partnership with ACT to provide professional athletes with new career opportunities led to the hiring of six athletes who took on roles across Human Resources, Marketing and Sales.
In 2021, 12% of our external hires came from these programs. Through these programs we have been able to attract qualified diverse candidates including women, as well as individuals from Black/African American, Hispanic/Latinx and low-income communities. Moving forward, we will continue to leverage programs like these and maximize our impact towards our diversity objectives. In 2022, our goal is that 20%+ of hiring will come from Pathways and New to Career in 2022.
You just understand what magic is when you are part of the show. The magic here is lovely and synchronized.”
I got to expand my knowledge and network with people of different backgrounds.”
The “Discover Equinix” onboarding program quickly enables new members to positively contribute and feel like they are part of the team. The program uses a collection of fun and engaging activities that suit various learning styles, including multimedia resources, opportunities to network and build employee relationships, and self-learning and personal-reflection experiences. The program integrates with local onboarding programs to provide new employees with a seamless journey into local and global teams.
In 2021, Equinix strengthened its commitment to transformational positive change–for its business, people and the world–through a renewed leadership brand. The leadership brand includes five specific behaviors that align to this purpose: ABCDI: Agile, Business-savvy, Collaborative, Decisive, and Inclusive. Adding Diversity and Inclusive leadership competencies and behaviors in our Leadership Success Profiles, which will be used in hiring and promotion discussions for VPs and above beginning in 2022, helps to recognize and incentivize these behaviors.
Our efforts toward learning and development reached new levels of engagement in 2021, even as we build out further elements of the program. We saw a total of 32,800 training hours across all our programs. Highlights from the year included:
Grow, Perform, Succeed (GPS) is our global approach to performance at Equinix. From Quarterly Conversations to year-end assessment and rewards, GPS is a cornerstone of how we align our work and our people in service to our business strategy, and it’s our way to support our employees’ personal and professional growth. Our performance management approach is aligned to the SMART goal model. It begins with goal setting in Q1, a progress review in Q2, an optional self-assessment in Q3, and an assessment by managers in Q4. During the Q4 Quarterly Conversations, managers and employees reflect together on the full year and provide future-focused feedback that can be used to start planning for the following year.
To continue improving employee engagement, we provided change management and e-learning, quick reference guides and applicable resources for employees and managers. We are also running four sessions of office hours per quarter for managers where a support team is available to address employees’ questions, and where we offer training on relevant topics such as setting SMART goals.
In 2021, we launched our 360-degree review tool and the ability to conduct these for mid-level leaders. The program continues building on the foundation of our leadership development approach and infrastructure, by realigning our leader success profiles to reflect what our renewed brand expects of our leaders. Additionally, in 2021, the Talent Development team continued working with our Allies Council to create and share content emphasizing the importance of setting SMART Goals.
We continue to solicit feedback through short quarterly Pulse surveys that invite employees to share feedback on topics relating to our overall organizational strategy focusing on People, Organization and Culture. These surveys help us identify themes and potential challenges, as well as providing insight into differences in the employee experience, satisfaction and sense of belonging across gender (globally) and race/ethnicity in the U.S. Our employee satisfaction score of 83 as of Q4 2021 reflects the average response to the question: How happy are you working at Equinix? Despite slightly declining scores due to a combination of macro-level COVID-19 related factors leading to small declines in overall market averages, Equinix’s satisfaction score is above benchmark by 4 points and within the top 20th percentile of vendor’s clients. In 2021, 72% of employees responded that feedback they provide in Pulse surveys lead to positive improvements, and 80% of managers agreed that Pulse helps them to be a more effective manager.
Additionally, in 2021 we launched new hire and exit surveys to better understand the employee experience throughout the full employee lifecycle.