Our diversity, equity and inclusion strategy

At UBS, we’re building a culture of belonging, where employees from all backgrounds and identities can feel recognized and valued, and where everyone can unlock their unique potential. To succeed, we’re focusing on delivering the greatest possible impact for our stakeholders – including our clients, communities, suppliers and society – and our employees, who are at the core of our diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) strategy.

Our DE&I employee strategy

We aim to create a diverse workforce & culture focused on inclusion.

We have strong foundational processes in place to optimize the hiring of talent who bring a range of diversity to our firm. We focus on training recruiters and hiring managers to help mitigate unconscious bias in the hiring process and hire the best-suited candidate for each role, regardless of background. In 2023, our hiring ratios were strong for women at all levels (43.3% hired compared with 40.9% headcount representation). Our ethnicity hiring ratios improved for US talent (46.9% hired compared with 31.9% headcount representation), UK talent (40.4% hired compared with 29.2% headcount representation), and for UK Black talent (16.4% hired compared with 3.6% headcount representation).

Our UBS Career Comeback program supports talent returning from a longer career break or career shift. Introduced in 2016 and offered globally since 2019, UBS Career Comeback helped 19 participants (15 women and 4 men) return to corporate jobs in 2023, and a total of 253 individuals since its inception.

Part of building an inclusive workplace is providing equitable access to advancement opportunities. To help ensure employees at all career stages have equitable development opportunities, we sponsor key talent and leadership development programs. Among these is our Growth Alignment Experience for Associate Director and Director level employees in the US who are identified through a self-nomination process. Over a six-month period in 2023, participants worked with external coaching professionals to enhance their strategic planning skills, expand their networks and build connections. Selected ethnic-minority employees in the UK at Associate Director and Director levels were invited to participate in Not in Your Image, a nine-month development program to build skills and leadership readiness. Participants were paired with a senior sponsor for longer-term career development.

In the US and the UK, we participate in the Executive Leadership Council’s Institute for Leadership Development and Research, which offers leadership development and action-based planning for Black professionals to facilitate individual growth that in turn strengthens our talent pipeline.

The strength and potential of our development programs and talent processes were reflected in female promotion rates for 2023 at Director, Executive Director and Managing Director levels. For example, 35.6% of Director level and above promotions were female (compared with 31.5% in 2022). Similarly, the US ethnic minority rate for Director level and above promotions was 33.9% in 2023 (vs. 19.6% in 2022) and the UK ethnic minority rate for Director level and above promotions was 28.7% in 2023 (vs. 24.8% in 2022).

A sense of belonging helps drive engagement and is important for overall well-being. We strive to create an environment where every employee feels they have a place and are recognized and respected for who they are and what they add to our workplace. Many of our policies, including fair pay and equal opportunities, along with highly valued employee options such as hybrid working arrangements, support a workplace environment that fosters belonging.

Across the firm, our 64 employee networks are vital to building a sense of belonging and strengthening our inclusive culture. Whether the topic is gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, culture, ethnic diversity, cultural background, disability, parenting, elder care, veteran status or life stage, employee volunteers in every region host numerous events every year to promote understanding, engagement and belonging, and to support our overall DE&I strategy. One of our networks’ key offerings is mentoring, including reverse mentoring. For example, our race and ethnicity and gender networks use mentoring programs to help members level up opportunities for career development. Allyship initiatives further extend engagement and reach, particularly for gender, gender identity, and ethnicity efforts.

We’re proud to be a member of the Valuable 500, a global business collective of 500 CEOs and their companies who innovate in support of disability inclusion. As examples, we uphold our commitment by providing a barrier-free application, recruiting and onboarding process for candidates and, providing inclusive disability awareness training for HR professionals with a focus on working with people with disabilities. We support and promote our ability-focused employee networks world-wide, and in 2023, we implemented robust global accessibility standards that inform our disability strategy, and our digital accessibility. Our IT specialists also began implementing the latest international Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG 2.2) to further enhance and optimize our digital accessibility. Valuable 500 webpage.

Our accountability framework embodies the oversight of the Group Executive Board (GEB) and its commitment to achieving our aspirational goals, along with empowering leaders to drive our DE&I strategy forward. We use data monitoring, fair pay practices, management dashboards, and toolkits to support accountability. All GEB members and their leadership teams are evaluated on their efforts toward achieving our aspirations. We also have a number of business-led DE&I councils and people forums across the firm that help ensure that accountability is a shared responsibility Group-wide.

Externally, we partner with initiatives such as the UK government’s Women in Finance Charter to support the progression of women into senior roles and to publicly report on progress.

Our aspirations

We are committed to achieving our aspirational goals, along with empowering leaders to drive our DE&I strategy forward. We believe that transparency is key to achieving our aspirations and in 2020, outlined specific intentions to enhance our female and ethnic minority representation, especially among management. Specifically, by 2025, we aspire to have 30% of Director-level and above roles globally held by women and 26% of Director-level and above roles in the US and 26% in the UK held by ethnic-minority talent, as well as 4% Black in the UK, along with additional regional aspirations.

Employees bringing DE&I to life

A sense of belonging helps drive engagement and is important for overall well-being. With over 60 network chapters globally, and more than 45,000 unique members, our employee networks are a key engine for creating and supporting a culture of engagement and belonging for all employees.

DE&I in annual reporting

This year, we’re highlighting the advancement of DE&I across our combined firm in the UBS Sustainability Report. In it, we outline our strategy and illustrate how we’re building a culture of belonging where everybody can unlock their full potential. We also discuss the progress we’ve made over the past year on key measures and link to additional DE&I and employee-related information.

Nurturing great leaders

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Honored to be recognized

We're widely recognized as a world-class employer that fosters a diverse workplace and inclusive culture. See the employer awards site for our global and regional awards.

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