By Andie Burjek
Sep. 7, 2016
Women on average make 79 cents to a man’s dollar in the United States, according to the National Partnership for Women and Families — and that’s before taking factors like age and race into account.
With a workforce that is half female, Hilton Worldwide became one of 55 companies to sign the White House’s Equal Pay Pledge, which encourages businesses to provide equal pay for women. Half of Hilton’s global workforce is female. The pledge extends to employees of hotels owned and managed across the Hilton portfolio and corporate offices in the United States, according to Laura Fuentes, senior vice president, talent, rewards and people analytics.
President Barack Obama initially announced the pledge at the United State of Women Summit in June. The White House released a press release on Women’s Equality Day on Aug. 26, announcing 29 new companies to sign the pledge, bringing the total to 55, including Microsoft, Apple, Chobani, IBM and Target Corporation.
“We have long been committed to diversity and inclusion across our company, and signing the Equal Pay Pledge is just one way we have demonstrated this commitment,” said Fuentes via email. “Our goal is to be the most hospitable company in the world — for our guests and team members around the world.”
The international hotel chain uses groups — such as its Women’s Team Member Resource Group, Women’s Executive Networking Program and Women in Leadership Excellence Program (in partnership with the University of Virginia) — to further this commitment, Fuentes added. Also, it uses certain family-focused benefits such as an “industry leading” maternity leave policy and flexible working options.
More specifically, by signing the pledge Hilton and the other companies have promised to conduct an annual companywide gender pay analysis, review hiring and promotion processes to weed out unconscious bias and other barriers, and promote best practices that can close the national wage gap.
“When women are fully engaged in our workforce and communities, society at large benefits from the great ideas and innovation that flourishes” said Microsoft in its statement. “Our commitment to equal pay gives us the opportunity to attract and hire from a broader talent pool of the best employees, managers and leaders.”
Target, in a statement, said it has implemented “meaningful business practices” such as leadership training designed to reduce that likelihood of making decisions based on stereotyping or bias.
Hilton, meanwhile, aims to represent the different cultures, backgrounds and viewpoints of its guests in order to become to the “most hospitable company.” Part of that diversity is gender diversity.
“We’re honored to help advance action around this important issue,” Fuentes said.
Web: Andie Burjek is a Workforce associate editor. Comment below, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Workforce on Twitter at @workforcenews.
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