We are committed to a workforce that is diverse in composition and a workplace that is inclusive and welcoming, offering every team member the opportunity to contribute to DIRECTV’s success. Our Employee Resource Groups (or ERGs) are important contributors to our diverse culture. These employee-organized groups, each championed by an executive sponsor, enrich the professional and personal growth of employees with common interests. Members also drive our progress in building an inclusive culture by identifying areas for continued improvement.
In 2014, we organized our seventh ERG, VETERANS@DIRECTV, to support employees who have served in the military. As part of its vision, mission and goals, the group aims to raise both internal and external awareness of DIRECTV as a military-friendly employer.
ERGs are open to all employees who support the group’s mission, and each serves as an important vehicle for mentoring, networking, personal and career growth and volunteerism.
In 2014, we increased the level of collaboration among our ERGs. A great example was the 30th Annual AIDS Walk Los Angeles. Strong recruitment and fundraising support by our ERGs increased participation by all of our business units. Collectively, DIRECTV 2014 L.A. AIDS Walk participants raised $10,586.
Our ERGs continue to play an important role in enhancing our workforce and strengthening our culture of diversity and inclusion. Each year, leaders of the ERGs meet with our CEO and members of the DIRECTV senior leadership team to discuss progress and gain leaders’ input on future plans. Our goals are to increase the number of participants in current groups, expand the number of ERGs, especially with participants from more segments of our workforce, and enable ERGs to be contributors to key business and workforce development initiatives. Membership today is concentrated at our larger company sites, led by our corporate headquarters in Southern California. We are pursuing initiatives to encourage broader participation at more of our locations. For example, at our Huntsville, Alabama, Customer Care Center, a successful pilot of an ERG involving front-line employees in one of our call centers was completed, and the new Working Parents Information Network is now sharing information and resources with employees to help them balance work and family responsibilities effectively.
DIRECTV Employee Resource Groups
BAALANCE (Building African-American Leaders and Navigating the Company Experience) comprises more than 450 members, including African-American employees and employees who support the group's mission. BAALANCE initiatives focus on mentoring, professional development, community outreach and building an active and diverse member base. The group has participated in several community events. Some events include the Relay for Life walk, where members raised nearly $2,000 for the American Cancer Society, and a drive for donations of books and school supplies for elementary and middle school students in Los Angeles.
The Latino Network Connection is dedicated to fostering the professional development of Latino employees, community outreach, cultural awareness and providing the opportunity to influence DIRECTV product/service offerings for the Latino community. Its more than 160 members have identified four pillars to support their mission: networking, professional development, community outreach and corporate initiatives. Through events such as product focus groups, bringing Latino market awareness to the company, toy drives, fundraising walks/runs, Latino health awareness seminars and clothing drives, this ERG is making a difference by addressing community needs.
OUT@DIRECTV engages lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) employees and those who support the LGBT community. Its members are committed to LGBT equality and maintaining an open and inclusive workplace. Founded in 2011, OUT@DIRECTV today has more than 150 members working in Los Angeles, New York, Denver and in our call centers. The group’s principal initiatives are employee development; community development, including charitable giving and volunteerism; and business development to ensure that equality is factored into advertising, marketing and supplier decisions. OUT@DIRECTV’s advocacy and engagement have served as a catalyst for the kinds of positive organizational change that has led to DIRECTV’s receiving a top Corporate Equality Index Rating of 100 by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation for our LGBT-inclusive workplace practices.
VETERANS@DIRECTV serves as a visible and engaging network honoring and supporting our military community. With 213 members, it advocates for DIRECTV as a company that hires veterans. The group promotes DIRECTV Careers-related news and programs to raise awareness both within and outside the company. It drives employee-veteran and supporters’ engagement internally through online websites and in-person events to support nationwide initiatives. It is active in annual service programs to benefit veterans, their families and agencies that support veterans, especially in communities near our major U.S. work locations.
Women’s Leadership Exchange (WLE) creates opportunities for women by contributing to a culture that attracts, develops and enhances the experiences of all employees. Founded in 2006 as our first ERG, the group’s membership has grown to around 1,000 members. The extensive programs for WLE’s Los Angeles, Denver and New York groups include speaker forums, networking events, working parent groups and well-established mentoring programs. More than 125 mentors, predominately female, are currently paired with mentees to focus on career development, leadership skills, networking and personal brand image. The WLE has also established peer-mentoring groups and holds an Annual Mentor Walk, pairing mentors with several mentees for a lunchtime event drawing more than 200 attendees.
The Working Parents Information Network (WpIN) is a resource, support and advocacy group for all DIRECTV parents. Based in the Huntsville, Alabama, Customer Care Center, WpIN hosts speakers on parenting topics, provides networking opportunities for parents, shares knowledge and strives to make the site and the company the best place it can be for working parents. The group’s mission is to create avenues that provide working parents with flexible and reliable resources that promote growth opportunities through social interaction, involvement in transformative decision-making for the workplace and active community involvement within and around the Huntsville Customer Care Center, where the group originally formed as a pilot for employee resource groups that involve front-line employees.
Work/life balance can be difficult for working parents. WpIN’s goal is to help alleviate some of the day-to-day worry of working parents by providing community resources on a variety of parenting needs such as flexible child care options, carpooling coordination and home ownership seminars. WpIN also works closely with the Huntsville Customer Care leadership team to improve the employee experience by promoting the call centers’ theme of P.E.E.T. (Promoter Experience Every Time) in all interactions. In 2014, WpIN events engaged employees at the Huntsville site with charitable fundraisers for United Way of Madison County and for Christmas Charities Year Round (a local nonprofit organization that provides basic needs to Madison County residents).
The mission of the Young Professionals Network (YPN) is to provide unique opportunities and resources for young DIRECTV professionals in order to maximize their personal and professional growth through relationship-building, knowledge-sharing, leadership and company brand promotion. When it comes to professional growth, YPN continues to lead by example with a robust constituency of more than 800 members, including a growing chapter in DIRECTV’s New York Offices and at our Los Angeles Broadcast Center. With around 50 percent of DIRECTV’s workforce under age 35, an important goal for YPN is to better connect generations in the workplace while enabling members to build their networks and expand their range of potential. In 2014, YPN events included a New York March Madness charitable fundraiser, a four-part career development training series in Los Angeles and a speech by CEO Mike White that reflected on his personal career journey. YPN’s executive sponsor is Joe Bosch, executive vice president and chief human resources officer.