AT&T Issue Briefs

Our issue briefs provide additional details on topics identified as most important by our stakeholders. View all the issue briefs on the Reporting Library for a comprehensive overview or choose an issue in the drop-down menu.

 


Global Reporting Initiative Standard Disclosures
Talent attraction, engagement & retention MA;
Employee diversity, equity & inclusion MA; 2-7; 2-8; 2-
30; 404-1; 404-2; 404-3; 405-1


Global Reporting Initiative Standard Disclosures
Talent attraction, engagement & retention MA;
Employee diversity, equity & inclusion MA; 2-7; 2-8; 2-
30; 404-1; 404-2; 404-3; 405-1


ESG Material Issues
Employee diversity, equality & inclusion; Employee
health, safety & well-being; Labor relations; Talent
attraction, engagement & retention

ESG Material Issue
Employee diversity, equality & inclusion; Employee
health, safety & well-being; Labor relations; Talent
attraction, engagement & retention

 

 

Our Position

 

Talented, engaged employees are key to our company’s success. We strive to be an employer of choice and invest in our people through well-paying jobs, competitive benefits and skills development programs that open up advancement opportunities.


Key Performance Indicators
2017
2018
2019
2020
2021
Total number of employees worldwide¹
2017254,000
2018268,220 
2019247,800 
2020230,760 
2021202,600
Number of global part-time employees²
20176,685 
201811,766 
201910,692 
20203,943 
20212,668
Average age of employees²
2017-- 
201844 
201942 
202043 
202143
Total U.S. workforce diversity³ (women)
201731%
201833%
201933%
202034%
202132%
Total U.S. workforce diversity³ (people of color)
201743%
201844%
201945%
202046%
202147%
Total U.S. management diversity³ (women)
201735%
201837%
201937%
202037%
202136%
Total U.S. management diversity³ (people of color)
201737%
201838%
201940%
202040%
202143%
Percent of union-represented employees⁴
2017~46% 
2018~40% 
2019~40% 
2020~37% 
2021~37% 
Number of employees, retirees and eligible dependents offered health and welfare benefits⁵
20171.1M 
20181.1M 
20191.0M 
20201.0M 
20211.0M 
Amount invested in direct employee training and development programs⁶
2017$220M 
2018$200M 
2019$200M 
2020$166M
2021$158M
Number of hours spent on employee training⁶
201720M 
201816M 
201916M 
202016M 
202115M 
Amount invested in tuition assistance for employees⁶
2017$30.0M 
2018$24.0M 
2019$18.0M 
2020$15.8M 
2021$13.0M 

 

1 2017 data inclusive of AT&T Communications. 2018 data inclusive of AT&T Communications and WarnerMedia. 2019–2021 data inclusive of AT&T Corporate. Note: In April 2022, we completed the sale of our WarnerMedia segment to Discovery, Inc. In July 2021, we completed a transaction with TPG Capital involving our North America video business – including DIRECTV, AT&T TV and U-verse – to form a new company called DIRECTV. In November 2021, we completed the sale of our Latin America video operations, Vrio, to Grupo Werthein. In June 2022, we completed the sale of the programmatic advertising marketplace component of Xandr Inc to Microsoft.

2 2017 data inclusive of AT&T Communications. 2018–2020 data inclusive of AT&T Communications and Xandr.

3 2017 data inclusive of AT&T Communications. 2018–2020 data inclusive of AT&T Communications and WarnerMedia. Final 2021 data is also available in the DE&I Annual Report.

4 2017–2021 data inclusive of AT&T Communications.

5 2017–2019 data inclusive of AT&T Communications. 2020–2021 data inclusive of U.S.-based AT&T Corporate employees..

6 2017–2020 data inclusive of AT&T Communications. 2021 data inclusive of AT&T Corporate and AT&T Communications.

 

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Our Action

Our jobs are vital to the communities we serve. We have employees in all 50 U.S. states and more than 60 countries. Our employees make AT&T a great place to work while they deliver technology, media and telecommunications services to millions of consumers and businesses every day.

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DE&I)
We work hard to build a workforce that reflects our communities and the world we live in. Our diverse and inclusive workforce is a product of continuous effort to create a culture where all employees can learn and grow. In 2021, more than 55% of open positions were filled by diverse candidates and more than 53% were filled as internal promotions. 7 7 Inclusive of AT&T Corporate and AT&T Communications.

We have been a leader in developing our supplier diversity program for more than 50 years. And in 1975, AT&T became one of the first major American corporations to adopt a policy prohibiting discrimination against employees based on sexual orientation.

AT&T is committed to giving employees opportunities to learn and grow. That’s why we’ve invested tremendous resources, attention and thought toward building the future talent of our company. Our Chief Diversity & Development Officer oversees AT&T’s talent acquisition and development programs that aim to identify talent and build a pipeline for future leaders within the company, while working to foster development and enhance the employee experience. Additionally, the Chief Diversity & Development Officer leverages AT&T’s DE&I strategies, programs and partnerships across the enterprise, including our work relating to racial and social justice initiatives.

Reporting regularly to the Governance and Policy Committee and annually to the Board of Directors, our Chief Diversity & Development Officer leads AT&T’s efforts to leverage our leadership in diversity and inclusion to drive innovation and growth, as well as the company’s equal employment opportunity and affirmative action policies. We convene several councils to drive awareness and employee engagement in diversity, equity and inclusion, including:

  • CEO’s Diversity Council
  • Senior Executive Diversity Council
  • Business Unit Diversity Expert Team
  • Employee Group Presidents Council 

As a leading global employer, we have a responsibility to strengthen and support diversity in the communities where we operate. AT&T is part of the Business Coalition for the Equality Act – a group of leading U.S. employers that support the addition of LGBTQ+ individuals to the list of groups afforded basic protections under U.S. federal law. We also endorse the United Nations (U.N.) Standards of Conduct for Business, which offer a holistic framework of best practices to help combat discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity globally.

In 2020, our CEO signed on to the U.N.'s Women's Empowerment Principles (WEPs), signaling AT&T’s commitment to promoting gender equality and women’s empowerment in the workplace, marketplace and community. The WEPs are a primary vehicle for corporate delivery on the gender equality dimensions of the 2030 agenda and the U.N.’s Sustainable Development Goals. We also joined the OneTen Coalition, a group of corporations pledging to collectively hire 1 million Black Americans over the next 10 years.

In 2021, we began our Equality First movement with the launch of the Equality First app, giving employees access to an immersive hub of content and hands-on tools. The app enables connected conversations, where employees can get to know each other through guided discussions and gain new perspectives. It also features a podcast series, employee videos and a tool to help participants assess their understanding of social bias. Equality First is designed to inspire, teach and empower AT&T employees, partners and customers to Stand for Equality.

We’re proud of the external recognition we receive for our dedication to building a culture of inclusion. AT&T was inducted into DiversityInc’s Hall of Fame in 2020 and was named to several Specialty Lists at the 2021 awards. AT&T also received a 100% score on the Disability Equality Index for the 7th consecutive year. For more information about our diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives, visit the AT&T Diversity, Equity & Inclusion website.

Equal Opportunity Employment

At AT&T, we encourage success based on individual merits and abilities without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, gender, gender identity, gender expression, sexual orientation, age, disability, marital status, citizenship status, military status, protected veteran status, employment status or other protected statuses. We support and obey laws that prohibit discrimination everywhere we do business. And AT&T fully considers all qualified applicants, including those with a criminal history.

Employee Groups

To create a culture of inclusion in our workforce, we encourage employees to join one or more of our employee groups. Across AT&T’s enterprise, there are 37 employee groups and networks with more than 145,250 employees participating. These groups exemplify our company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion through their efforts in the workplace, marketplace and community while focusing on their members’ professional development and opportunities for community service.

We have employee groups representing the full diverse cultural and experiential dimensions of our workforce – including women, Black, Asian/Pacific Islander, Hispanic/Latino, Native American, LGBTQ+ individuals, people with disabilities, military veterans, parents, people of different faiths or religions – and individuals with similar professional interests such as those in engineering, project management, media and entertainment technology. In 2021, we launched Faith@Work, our first faith-based employee group, to create an inclusive platform that brings employees together for education on religious diversity, dialogue, interfaith collaboration and community engagement. And several of our employee groups, such as Mujeres en Acción and Pulse of India, specifically engage employees outside of the U.S. All AT&T employees are welcome to join any of our employee groups.

For more information about our employee groups, see our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion website.

Veteran Hiring Initiative

We remain focused on supporting veterans and identifying new opportunities for veterans through hiring and career development. AT&T has relationships with organizations like MSEP, Blue Star Families, and Hire Our Heroes to support our mission of hiring veterans and their families. Additionally, in 2021, AT&T became a participating organization in the Department of Defense SkillBridge program, an opportunity for eligible service members leaving the military to gain valuable civilian work experience through leadership training, mentorship and hands-on projects. For example, we support the AT&T Veterans Media Fellowship in collaboration with Veterans in Media & Entertainment. The program offers veterans an in-depth understanding of the media industry landscape and critical business functions, as well as a project-based curriculum designed to provide real-life, job-ready skills. We’re also committed to helping address the staggering unemployment among veterans’ spouses by supporting the Blue Star Families’ Spouseforce initiative.

Supporting Employees During COVID-19

Safety is our top priority as employees return to the office and other work sites. We have developed an agile approach that is informed by best public health practices and takes national, state and local guidelines into account to ensure a safe environment for all employees. Our safe return to workplaces guidelines are based on the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other medical and public health authorities.

We have completely covered the cost of COVID-19 testing, treatment and vaccines for employees and dependents through our AT&T health plans. Additional mental and physical health information and resources were deployed to help employees and their families practice better self-care and mindfulness and maintain optimal well-being. We have also continued to make it convenient for employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19 by working with CVS Health to establish on-site vaccination clinics at AT&T locations across the country.

The AT&T Employee Relief Fund – a 501(c)(3) public charity supported by employee donations and matching grants from the AT&T Foundation – is available for colleagues to request assistance for COVID-19-related personal hardships.

Training & Career Development

We’re committed to helping our employees grow along with our company by developing the skills that they – and AT&T– need today and in the future.

Our training initiatives, which reached 210,000 employees in 2021, create a culture of continuous learning and skills development. We offer personalized training, mentoring and career development programs through our award-winning internal training organization, AT&T University. We invested about $158 million in direct employee training and professional development programs and delivered 15 million hours of training in 2021 – 43 hours per employee. 7 7 Inclusive of AT&T Corporate and AT&T Communications. Our Chief Diversity & Development Officer has oversight over training and career development.
Talent Development
In 2021, 95% of Level 1–5 employees with at least 3 months of service received a formal performance appraisal. 7 7 Inclusive of AT&T Corporate and AT&T Communications. While we do not track the frequency of career development discussions, our supervisors are encouraged to have continuous feedback discussions at least once a month with their direct reports and a career discussion once a year, which may or may not occur during a formal review. Career discussions with employees may focus on short- or long-term career planning.

As we work to inspire a culture of continuous learning, we have training designed for all employees throughout their career: new hire training, continuous training for a current role and skills transformation training for a potential future role. We encourage management and nonmanagement employees to be the strongest contributors and leaders possible through internal job-based and leadership development training, tuition aid, and various external training and development programs. These efforts have led to reduced training time, improved employee performance, reduced operational costs and revenue growth, as well as better talent attraction, engagement and retention metrics.

We provide career guidance through an AI-powered online platform called Career Intelligence, where employees can review and assess their skills and receive skills development recommendations. Employees can also see what jobs are available within the company, the skills required for each position and whether demand in that particular area is projected to grow or shrink in the years ahead to make informed decisions about their careers. Employees’ online training is booked, completed and logged through our Personal Learning Experience platform. Of the approximately 15 million hours of training recorded in 2021, more than 670,000 hours were devoted to skills transformation. Also, in 2021, almost 58% of AT&T management employees engaged in skilling programs provided or subsidized by the company. 8 8 Inclusive of AT&T Communications and AT&T Latin America.

AT&T UNIVERSITY

Our internal training organization, AT&T University, works across our business to create and deliver best-in-class training solutions that positively impact our workforce. AT&T University is our platform for developing a diverse leadership team, delivering strategic business training and energizing our workforce to drive innovation.

AT&T University Leadership training covers leadership skills, health and wellness, and other corporate initiatives. We offer leadership and career courses, including partnerships with learning institutions such as Harvard Business and LinkedIn Learning. AT&T University also delivers content year-round through custom-built mobile learning applications, including the AT&T University app and Leading with Distinction 365, our weekly microlearning series. Our Virtual Studios also broadcast live, leader-led training to employees across the globe.

REAL TIME TRAINING

Real Time Training, a dynamic methodology that uses machine learning, delivers small-bite training content to individual employees to improve role-specific key performance indicators (KPIs). We identify who needs training and when, as well as which training solution is most likely to drive the greatest performance improvements for the employee’s respective KPIs.

For example, in 2021, $1.8 million of incremental revenue was generated from 1,684 employees who received real-time tutorial recommendations, yielding 4,700 incremental new postpaid, broadband and video customers. The overall lifetime value of these new customers is approximately $10.9 million.

EXTERNAL LEARNING COLLABORATIONS

We also work with external organizations to help create opportunities for our employees and the public. Programs range from bite-sized content to more in-depth specializations and nanodegree programs covering topics such as AI, data analysis, programming and other fields.

We are collaborating with public and private universities to offer a variety of degree programs such as Northern Virginia Community College’s information technology apprenticeship program, University of Oklahoma’s master of science in data science and analytics, and North Carolina A&T State University’s master of business administration, master of science in information technology and master of science in technology management. At Champlain College, we offer tuition reimbursement for a Bachelor of Science degree in cybersecurity, allowing employees to apply academic credits earned from online badge courses toward their degree. AT&T also negotiated a tuition cap with Champlain College for the degree program to reduce costs for AT&T and its employees.

And AT&T has partnered with LinkedIn Learning to offer its entire catalog as a learning resource, including courses in business, technology and creative subjects.

TUITION ASSISTANCE

We provide financial assistance to management and nonmanagement employees pursuing academic degrees that benefit both the employee and the company. In 2021, we invested more than $13 million in tuition assistance for both management and nonmanagement employees. More than 3,000 employees participated in the tuition reimbursement program. 7 7 Inclusive of AT&T Corporate and AT&T Communications.

We closely monitor the number of employees who take advantage of these learning and development opportunities. Internal research shows that employees who have completed training are more likely to obtain a new job within the company than employees who have not done so.

Talent Attraction & Retention

AT&T works hard to attract and retain talented, diverse and engaged employees. In 2020, we launched a cultural transformation initiative to help improve the way we work and identify the behaviors we must embody to best serve our customers. We conducted employee focus groups, surveys and interviews to gain an honest evaluation of our strengths and weaknesses – learning that the rigor and processes historically serving AT&T well had at times become a barrier to performing our best amid rapidly changing industries.

We launched the How We Connect culture model to amplify our most effective corporate behaviors and adopt behaviors and expectations that will help us transform and empower employees to discontinue practices that get in our way. We’re holding employees at all levels accountable through our ongoing performance development process, which focuses on clear work commitments, giving and requesting feedback, coaching, and formal midyear and end-of-year check-ins. Employees are expected to gather feedback from 5 peers or colleagues prior to their midyear and end-of-year conversations, and supervisors receive feedback from direct reports twice per year. Employees also have the option to utilize a 360-degree feedback survey directly aligned to our How We Connect behaviors to provide more well-rounded insight.

The Human Resources Committee (HRC) of our Board of Directors has oversight of human resources matters, including compensation and benefits, for all employees. The authority for benefits decisions may be delegated to the CEO or other human resources senior leaders depending on the magnitude of the financial impact. Delegation of compensation decisions depend on an individuals’ management level and compensation. The HRC meets several times a year to care for compensation matters, and the full Board receives annual reports on compensation for top executives as well as more frequent updates on human capital issues.

We regularly examine and make necessary adjustments to our compensation model to ensure fair and inclusive pay practices across our business. And we are committed to pay equity – regardless of gender or race/ethnicity – for employees who hold the same jobs, work in the same geographic area and have the same experience and performance levels.

AT&T offers competitive benefits packages to attract and retain a highly qualified workforce. We provide comprehensive health insurance, life insurance, disability coverage and retirement plans, as well as a variety of additional programs to help our employees navigate health challenges and life changes and plan for retirement.

Employee Total Wellbeing

AT&T fosters a culture of holistic wellbeing by encouraging healthy behaviors and creating space for employees to dedicate time to their wellbeing – physical, emotional, financial and social. To empower this culture, we offer comprehensive benefits that support our people in their own unique wellbeing journeys. In 2021 alone, we introduced or expanded 19 wellbeing programs to prioritize the overall wellbeing of employees. We believe that employees must care for themselves and their families before they’re able to serve our customers.

Health and Welfare Benefits 9 9 Benefits and policies vary by country and operating company.
In 2021, we offered health and welfare benefits to 1 million employees, retirees and their eligible dependents in the U.S. 10 10 Inclusive of U.S.-based AT&T Corporate employees.

SOCIAL: Time Off and Family Support

We offer a broad selection of benefits to support our employees’ wellbeing - physical, emotional, financial and social. Starting with social wellbeing, AT&T has a strong focus on family planning, family building, and caregiving.  These services include fertility and egg freezing services, adoption, maternity rooms and breastmilk shipping, subsidized backup dependent care, elder care, gender reassignment, and more. As part of our suite of family benefits, paid parental leave (including for adoptive parents) provides parents up to 12 weeks of paid time off to bond with the new addition to their family. 11 11 This time is provided in excess of any time provided by state or local law and any short-term disability benefits/time off for recovering mothers. The United States does not have a legally required minimum for paid family leave. Currently, the 1993 federal Family and Medical Leave Act offers 12 weeks of unpaid maternity leave. This time may be extended for birthing parents when paired with applicable short-term disability benefits. We provide management employees up to 3 weeks of paid Caregiver Leave to be there for a child, grandchild, parent or certain other loved ones for qualified situations. In addition, through our family planning and support services, all employees have access to 24/7 virtual support for pregnancy, postpartum, loss, adoption/surrogacy and return to work, including 5 days off for pregnancy loss/miscarriage. Further, employees receive established Paid Time Off, either 23 days or 28 days based on service, and sick time, incrementally, as needed, or up to 7 consecutive business days.

PHYSICAL: Medical and Chronic Condition Management

Our medical programs offer employees and their families a variety of ways to take care of their health. We offer onsite health and wellbeing centers so that our employees can see a doctor, physical therapist, chiropractor, psychologist, and/or condition management nurse all in the convenience of their workday.  Additionally, our specialized pre-diabetes, diabetes, hypertension, weight management, digital physical therapy and sleep programs allow our members to manage conditions from their homes through connected devices (glucose monitors, blood pressure cuffs, scales, wearable sensors and CPAP machines), plus access to specialized virtual care teams. And, in certain circumstances, if an employee does not have access to a needed medical service virtually or in-person near their home, we also provide reimbursement for medical travel to obtain the service in another geography. Our CarePlus supplemental benefit program covers many experimental and expanded services rarely covered through a traditional health plan. Our members have access to experimental treatments for cancer and other less common conditions, expanded coverage for speech, occupational and physical therapy, and services like augmented reality/virtual reality gaming digital therapy for children with ADHD, childbirth classes, doula support and even service animals.

EMOTIONAL: EAP and Resilience-Building Services

To fully support employees’ emotional wellbeing, AT&T’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) provides professional and confidential assistance to employees and their families who experience work-related or personal challenges. In addition to our core EAP, we have expanded therapy visits through a supplemental program focused on getting our employees quicker access to high quality, outcomes based, short-term therapy. Finally, we also offer a digital resilience building and mindfulness service to help employees focus on stress and anxiety management, work on exercises for building resilience and ultimately focus on their emotional needs.

FINANCIAL: Savings Plans and Professional Advice

From a financial perspective, we offer select employees flexible spending accounts, health reimbursement accounts and/or payroll deductions and company contributions to health savings accounts that allow them to pay for out-of-pocket healthcare and dependent care costs with tax-advantaged funds. Additionally, through an array of retirement vehicles – including defined-benefit and/or defined-contribution plans – we’re helping employees plan for retirement. All full-time U.S. employees are eligible for a 401(k) savings plan with a generous company match. As participants in the AT&T savings plans, employees can choose from a wide range of investment options with varying risk tolerance levels to assist in their retirement needs. Savings plan participants have access to an investment advisory service with 2 levels of service: free online tools or fee-based professional account management with an adviser. To support employees’ financial wellbeing, these programs and services are complemented by opportunities to hear from experts through educational workshops, events, videos and chances to interact with colleagues.

FLEXIBLE WORK

AT&T offers a variety of work scheduling options for many roles, including alternative and compressed workweeks, flextime, makeup time and part-time schedules, as well as a full-time work-from-home positions.

As we look to life and operations beyond the pandemic, we’ve revised our business models to support flexible office space and at-home productivity for many employees. Management employees can be assigned to work primarily from home, regularly go to AT&T work locations based on the needs of the business or flex their time between home and an AT&T work location/client location. Union-represented call center employees can apply to work in virtual centers, which allow them to work from home.

To view more details about our benefits, visit our careers website.

Union Relationships
With approximately 37% union-represented employees, we have one of the largest full-time, union-represented workforces in the U.S. 13 13 Inclusive of AT&T Communications. We’ve built cooperative relationships with our unions, primarily with the Communications Workers of America (CWA) and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW). We work diligently with our unions to create competitive contracts that provide good wages and benefits for our employees. We have reached 34 fair labor agreements with unions since 2017.

Recent agreements are proof that even during challenging economic times, the company and unions can work together to provide and protect high-quality middle-class careers – jobs with competitive wages and benefits that are among the best in the country.

Please see the AT&T Bargaining website for additional details.