The AT&T Issue Brief Library

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Workforce Diversity

Materiality Assessment Topic: Employee Diversity

Issue Summary

A diverse workforce reflects society’s makeup and is a foundation for good business.

Our Position

We believe that our success begins with our people, and a diverse and inclusive workforce benefits our business, employees, customers, investors and communities. With a diverse workforce, we can better understand the different needs of our customers and can deliver products and services that enable them to do more.

Data Highlights

Our Action

Our people are the foundation of our company’s success. That’s why we invest so much to ensure they have opportunities to learn and grow. We also strive to cultivate an inclusive environment so employees know how they contribute to the company's success.

Workforce Inclusion

We have long been a leader in providing an inclusive work environment and offering performance-based rewards.

A commitment to diversity and an inclusive culture are essential to sustained innovation and growth, so we embed this commitment in our business practices and hold our employees accountable. Our Chairman’s Inclusion Council, which includes our Chief Diversity Officer and the CEO’s direct reports, oversees all diversity and inclusion practices and metrics.

To steer accountability and leadership from the top, our Board of Directors annually reviews our performance in the diversity and inclusion space.  In order to drive adherence to our Code of Business Conduct across the organization, we offer numerous diversity and inclusion training courses to all employees, focused on AT&T’s four-pillar diversity strategy: the business case for diversity and inclusion, how to work across different generations, and how to discover and work through subtle biases. Additionally, managers are held accountable for diversity in annual performance reviews.

Today, our 50-state workforce is 33 percent female and 42 percent people of color. Women are 36 percent of our managers, and 34 percent of our managers are people of color. By comparison, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, roughly 27 percent of IT managers nationally are women, and 25 percent are people of color.1 Since 1988, hundreds of college graduates hired into AT&T have successfully completed AT&T's Leadership Development Program; 54 percent of the participants are women and 45 percent are people of color. For more information, visit our site at ATTJobs.

We employ the best people from all backgrounds and perspectives to provide products and services that meet our customers' needs. Our excellent network of employees gives us the leading edge in our industry. The retention rate for all women in 2015 was 85 percent, while the retention rate for people of color was 88 percent.

In 2015 we continued the Champions of Diversity Award.  This award is given by our Chief Diversity Officer (CDO) to recognize General Managers who demonstrate role model behavior in support of AT&T’s diversity and inclusion values and support our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) and Employee Networks (ENs).

Employee Resource Groups/Employee Networks

We also support the activities of 12 employee resource groups and nine employee networks with total membership now topping 122,000.  Each group’s annual goals and efforts further AT&T’s commitment to diversity and inclusion through its efforts in the workplace, marketplace and the community. In 2015, the ERGs accumulated more than 362,000 hours of volunteer time and granted more than $619,400 in scholarships while our employee networks volunteered over 11,800 hours.

Our newest employee networks are the Asia Pacific Women’s Organization (APWO) and Mujeres en Acción AT&T (Women in Action AT&T). APWO facilitates engagement, networking, education and sharing among women of the Asia Pacific to foster a sense of support and community for them.  Mujeres promotes the contribution of AT&T Mexico women and further develops their leadership skills. 

In 2015, the Association of ERG & Councils ranked AT&T’s Women of AT&T (WOA) No. 18 on its top 25 list for supporting AT&T’s Human Resources initiative, “Your Health Matters.”  WOA partnered with EnjoyCPR® Safety training to offer American Heart Association-approved CPR Classes and certifications to employees and local communities at more than 60 AT&T locations in 32 states.  As a result, about 1,300 people received CPR certifications. 

AT&T’s ERGs are nonprofit organizations that help members develop professionally and personally, support the company’s annual goals and diversity & inclusion efforts and promote community involvement.  Employee networks tie more to a specific AT&T business unit (e.g., AT&T Women of Finance) and address such business unit goals as providing mentoring opportunities.

Supporting and Reaching Our Diverse Customers

Our customers are becoming more diverse. We understand diverse customers and actively market to them. It is essential to conduct business in the preferred language of our customers where feasible and offer culturally-relevant products and services.  We provide customer service in more than 160 languages within our customer call centers and our website.  Some of the most popular languages include Spanish, Korean, Vietnamese, Tagalog, Japanese, Polish and Russian.  Visit our website to see how we service our diverse customers  You’ll see that our products, such as DIRECTV® our award winning U-verse television, also offer specific programming in multiple languages.  We also offer a wide range of communications services to customers with vision, hearing, mobility and speech limitations.

But our marketing and advertising goes beyond the languages we use to communicate with customers, especially when working with African-American, Latino, LGBT, military and disability groups. We seek to respect cultural and other nuances in our communications. We also strive to ensure that general-market advertisements are inclusive and embrace diversity, reinforcing positive perceptions and effectively reaching audiences of all cultures and backgrounds.

To learn more about workforce diversity please visit AT&T’s Diversity Management website at


Updated on: Aug 1, 2016