Fortune 500 Alternate Diversity Programs: With Case Studies

PepsiCo, Microsoft, Hilton and Intel have all made commitments to hire more employees from underrepresented groups such as military veterans, those with disabilities, women, and Native Americans.

1. PepsiCo

  • PepsiCo has made a strong commitment to hiring US military veterans.
  • In order to recruit veterans, PepsiCo “specifically seek[s] out veterans at national and local veteran career events they attend and sponsor. They also partner with veteran recruiting organizations, such as Allies in Service, to ensure veterans are aware of their open positions.”
  • PepsiCo provides strong financial support for many nonprofits focused on serving veterans, including the Bob Woodruff Foundation, Carry the Load, and the Children of Fallen Patriots Foundation.
  • PepsiCo also works with the Warrior-Scholar Project, which is “an intensive program hosted by America’s top universities to prepare student-veterans for the transition from a military culture to an academic culture.” As part of the initiative, “PepsiCo leaders will be mentoring students as they transition into their new jobs.”
  • Frito-Lay, a subsidiary of PepsiCo, supports veteran employees through their “employee resource group called Valor. Valor’s mission is to recognize, appreciate, and support all veterans, the military, and their families within our communities.”
  • 4% of PepsiCo’s domestic workforce is made up of veterans and they hired 1,200 veterans in 2019. PepsiCo has been named the number one company for veteran hires by The Washington Post.

2. Microsoft

  • Microsoft has set a commitment to “increase the percentage of employees with disabilities at Microsoft.”
  • In order to do so, Microsoft has created a set of programs entitled “Inclusive Hiring for People with Disabilities.” One sub-program of this initiative includes hiring people with Autism. According to Microsoft: “We built the Microsoft Autism Hiring Program on the belief that traditional recruiting does not allow people with autism to demonstrate their strengths and qualifications. At Microsoft, applicants with autism engage in an extended interview process that focuses on workability, team projects, and skill assessment. Our process gives candidates the opportunity to showcase their unique talents while learning about Microsoft as an employer of choice.” Microsoft regularly hosts autism-specific hiring events, and has specific internship openings for people with autism.
  • Another sub-program of Microsoft’s Inclusive Hiring for People with Disabilities initiative is the “Supported Employment Program“. In this program, “Microsoft Real Estate and Facilities (RE&F) partners with vendors and employment agencies, creating job opportunities for people with intellectual/developmental disabilities (I/DD) at Microsoft facilities across the globe.”
  • Finally, Microsoft also holds designated “Ability Hiring Events” where they hold “inclusive interviews, train and educate [their] teams on disability etiquette, and provide interview accommodations to increase the diversity of [Microsoft] teams, positively impact the culture of [the] workplace and the way [they] develop [their] products.”
  • As of September 1, 2020, 6.1% of Microsoft employees self-reported that they had a disability. As 2020 was the first time Microsoft had released statistics on the number of employees with disabilities, there was no data for previous years to compare this number to.

3. Hilton

  • In 2019, Hilton set the following goals for 2025: to achieve 50% female leaders and 50% female interview slates for all recruitment efforts. Hilton originally set goals for female representation in their workforce in 2018.
  • Hilton’s female employees can “access a number of programs designed to encourage women’s success at various stages of their careers. They can also take advantage of the growing list of family-friendly benefits, including a flexible working environment, adoption assistance, the recently announced expanded parental benefits and partnership with Milk Stork.”
  • Hilton has also adopted flexible working arrangements in order to retain and promote female employees.
  • Hilton was recognized as the Best Workplace for Women in 2019.

4. Intel

  • Intel set the goal in 2015 to “be the first high technology company to reach full representation of women and underrepresented minorities in its U.S. workforce by 2020.” As such, Intel has focused partially on hiring Native Americans.
  • Intel partners with the American Indian Science and Engineering Society to increase STEM education for Native American students as well as providing “a mentorship program, leadership training, and opportunities for internships/full-time jobs at Intel” for Native Americans.
  • As of 2019, 0.8% of the Intel workforce identified as Native American, an increase from 0.5% in 2015.
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