We believe every employee should have psychological safety. This means being free to speak their minds, share their unique perspectives, not be paralyzed by fear of mistakes, and know other people care about them and they can trust those in positions of power. Our culture is at the heart of our success. It is our people, who share a passion for winning and put the customer at the center of everything, that creates the Magic of Equinix.
At our IBX data centers, we comply with all local, state and country safety regulations. We have a Global Health, Safety and Environmental (HSE) Standard Policy that ensures that Equinix conducts all business activities in a responsible manner. This means being free from recognized hazards, respecting the environment, and protecting the health and safety of our employees, customers, suppliers, partners and community neighbors. It also means complying with all applicable environmental, health and safety laws and regulations of countries, states, provinces and communities where we operate. We are also committing ourselves to continuous improvement in all corporate health and safety operations including within our IBX data centers. In 2019, we transitioned to ISO 45001 – the new international occupational health and safety standard for every EMEA IBX data center. To achieve these standards, companies must demonstrate that they are controlling and improving safety. Safety within our IBX data centers is our top priority, as most safety risks apply within those sites.
In response to the unprecedented global pandemic caused by a novel strain of coronavirus, referred to as Coronavirus disease 2019, or COVID-19, Equinix has implemented a number of precautionary measures in line with our business continuity and pandemic plans to minimize the risk of operational impacts and to protect the health and safety of employees, customers, partners and our communities. Equinix remains committed to supporting our stakeholders most urgent needs associated with “work from home” policies, such as providing reliable connectivity to business-critical cloud services, maintaining rapidly expanding video conferencing capabilities, and enabling access to local VPN capacity.
To assist our employees during this time of physical distance, Equinix has made supplementary employee resources available through a dedicated COVID-19 response page on the corporate intranet and through a variety of ongoing communications including a global “All-Hands” virtual company meeting, employee announcements, live and recorded webcasts, and team town halls. To ensure a careful, safe, and responsible eventual return to office, Equinix has developed a roadmap based on guidance from health experts and other leaders from around the world. Equinix employees do however retain the option to work from home through at least January 2021, regardless of when offices may open. Expectations on returning to the office will be based on local factors and may be extended beyond January 2021.
Our hearts go out to all those who have been impacted by COVID-19. Equinix remains dedicated to ensuring that all of our stakeholders feel that they are safe, they belong, and they matter.
As part of our efforts to support our global community, Equinix has developed a pandemic support program to provide some Platform Equinix services to qualifying organizations supporting the greater good through this pandemic. In order to alleviate critical IT bottlenecks and to scale interconnection needs, Equinix is offering these services to key providers of healthcare, education, government, and other essential services like food supply-chains, COVID-19 research and NGOs. Equinix hopes to enable these organizations to continue their important work supporting the most pressing challenges posed by this pandemic.
We are deeply appreciative of the flexibility and resourcefulness of all our employees during this uncertain time. In recognition of the challenges faced by our employees globally, Equinix extended financial support of $250 to each non-IBX employee to establish a sustainable work-from-home set up. Our IBX employees working in our data centers, who are considered essential workers, have demonstrated commitment and service in providing our customers with mission-critical stability. In acknowledgement of the tremendous efforts of our IBX employees, Equinix extended financial support equaling 5% of their salary with a maximum payout of $5,000.
Equinix employees worldwide have demonstrated incredible generosity and overwhelming compassion during this unprecedented pandemic. To help them contribute, Equinix increased its donation match to 2:1, for specified charities and NGOs working to respond to the coronavirus outbreak, through June 30, 2020. The 2:1 employee matching program raised more than $667,000 to enable front-line responders like healthcare workers, teachers, researchers, and aid organizations to continue to work for the greater good.
To support all Equinix full-time employees and their immediate family members with the unique obstacles that they are facing, we offer free, confidential and professional counseling services 24 hours a day, seven days per week through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). Equinix is committed to helping our employees maintain their health and well-being during this time and has compiled resources for employees to manage stress and to engage in exercise while working remotely, including employee-led meditation, yoga classes, and other offerings. To facilitate our employees in balancing work and personal needs throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, Equinix supports employees wishing to extend their time performing remote work, as well as supports flexible working schedule arrangements. Should an employee be exposed to the coronavirus or be required to quarantine due to government regulation, Equinix will provide the affected employee with paid leave for the duration of their quarantine, independent of accrued sick time.
Our employees have demonstrated a deep passion for and commitment to charitable programs and initiatives. As many in-person volunteer opportunities are currently unavailable during the global pandemic, Equinix has empowered our employees to virtually volunteer and support others from their home by making meaningful connections and contributing to the charitable programs and initiatives most important to them, despite physical distance.
For more information, please view our public response to COVID-19 on the Equinix website.
Equinix offers robust benefits to its employees throughout the world. Our programs vary by region and are continuously being improved. Some recent improvements in benefits include the following:
In 2019, we launched a global Employee Assistance Program to ensure our employees have access to support in times of need. We made significant strides to raise awareness and promote the importance of mental health in a series of webinars.
EquiLife Connect, our U.S. Well-Being Program from Virgin Pulse, is a fun, free online program to help our employees reach their health goals and earn up to $300 in rewards along the way. It’s a great way to inspire our employees to eat well, sleep better, be more active, manage stress and more.
In 2019, we began rewarding members for custom Equinix activities through attestation forms for things like participating in a volunteer event, receiving a flu shot, and completing an Annual Physical Well Visit Checkup. In addition, our employees had more than 2 million interactions with the Virgin Pulse Champions Program platform and tracked more than 2 billion steps (2,013,559,651), with 7,871 as the average daily step count.
Here are some examples of the programs our employees engaged in:
In 2020, we began featuring Healthy Habit challenges customized to Equinix events like World Sleep Day, self-care during the COVID-19 pandemic, and on March 1, we re-launched our Virgin Pulse Champions Program with 18 motivational experts located in 12 locations.
We launched our first-ever global well-being month in 2019. Employees led more than 41 events in 26 locations to raise awareness around both mental and physical well-being. Our CEO, Charles Meyers, volunteered to teach a yoga class in honor of International Day of Yoga, which was attended by 165 global employees in-person or via a live streaming event. Equinix donated $3,300 to the Give Back Yoga Foundation following the event to help bring the transformational benefits of yoga to people with limited access to this beneficial practice. As a result of employee participation in other well-being-related events for World Meditation Day and World Mental Health Day, an additional $4,000 was donated to Mindful Schools and $15,000 to International Suicide Prevention.
Employees also initiated the Equinix Impact Heart Walk, encouraging participants to run, walk or bike a route in the shape of a heart. For each heart shaped route image submitted, the company donated $20. In total, 157 people participated from 12 countries, bringing the total donation to $3,000. The winning employee chose to donate the collected funds to Wild Rice, an independent theater company in Singapore whose goal is to provide a forum for the shared experience of theatre that celebrates our diversity, reflects on the problems and possibilities of our times, and presents productions that inspire, challenge and entertain.
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In June 2017, a group of employees in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil came up with a challenge. The idea which started as a bet between friends was to encourage employees in Rio and elsewhere in the world to run 50 km (about 31 miles) per month. Whoever didn’t make the monthly goal would have to donate R$50.00 to charity. And for each person who reached the 50 km goal, Equinix Impact would donate R$100.00.
“The coolest thing about this project is that it’s independent and community-based,” says Rodrigo Castro, one of the founders of the project. “You can run or walk wherever you are in the world, whenever you’re available. And the end of the day you have helped yourself and others.”
Laura Freitas, another Equinix employee who helped to start the group, says it did more than encourage people to get active. “We have a group on WhatsApp about the club where we send pictures and meet up for runs. We’ll talk about it in the office, and it starts a lot of conversation and brings in new people.”
The challenge has spread beyond Rio, with employees joining via Strava from locations as far away as Spain, California, and even Poland. Since the project’s founding in June 2017 through December 2018, our employees have run a total of 27,516 miles. And the charitable impact has been significant: The club’s participants have raised $10,260 USD including the Equinix match. In short, they’ve managed to be well, do good, and stay connected in community, even across countries and continents.
It is important for everyone at Equinix to know that they belong, that they are part of a bigger purpose, valued for their unique contributions and are proud to work at Equinix. We are continually looking to extend and deepen our culture of inclusivity and belonging.