Gen Z engineering students say these are the 50 best global companies for diversity and inclusion

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Google was the top-ranked company for diversity and inclusion, according to Universum’s survey of STEM students. Reuters
  • Diversity and inclusion is an increasingly important driver of business success.
  • Employer branding specialist Universum just released a Diversity and Inclusion index based on a survey of tens of thousands of college students around the world, asking what the next generation of talent is looking for from their future employers.
  • Big tech companies and professional services are widely viewed by STEM students as being champions of diversity and inclusion.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Diversity and inclusion is an increasingly important driver of business success, and the world’s top companies are competing to attract talent from a wide array of backgrounds.

And initiatives to push for a more open and inclusive workplace could be particularly important to Gen Z, the most diverse generation in history. Gen Z students who identify as LGBT and Latino in particular have prioritised a commitment to diversity and inclusion as an important feature of their ideal future employers.

Employer branding specialist Universum annually surveys tens of thousands of college students around the world to determine what the next generation of talent is looking for from their future employers. The survey asks respondents about which companies or organisations they view as ideal places to work, and asks them to evaluate those companies across a wide range of 40 workplace attributes.

Universum has now constructed a Diversity and Inclusion index based on the survey results for three of those attributes: support for gender equality, commitment to diversity and inclusion, and respect for the company’s people. The index is calculated for companies ranked on Universum’s World’s Most Attractive Employers list, and gives a sense of which major companies and organisations are viewed as welcoming and inclusive workplaces.

Here are the 50 best companies for diversity and inclusion, based on Universum’s survey responses from STEM students.


50. GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)

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According to GSK’s website, the company wants “everyone at GSK to feel able to be themselves and bring their own unique perspectives, styles, and experience to our business. We value that uniqueness. It makes our business stronger.”


Read more about GSK’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


49. Bayer

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According to Bayer’s website, the company recognises the importance of “demonstrating how the diversity of our workforce and leadership can help Bayer better understand and satisfy the needs of the diverse communities we serve.” Bayer promotes diversity in STEM by offering scholarships and fellowships, and it runs a supplier diversity program.


Read more about Bayer’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


48. Sony

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According to the Sony Group Diversity Statement, created in 2013, “it is in Sony’s DNA – and a source of our innovation – to value different perspectives and backgrounds as we conduct our business activities globally and rise to new challenges.” Sony hosts a “diversity week” with its goal being “to raise awareness and promote action for change by enhancing and understanding the significance of diversity.”


Read more about Sony’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


47. Toyota

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Toyota’s website includes an extensive report on the company’s diversity and inclusion initiatives.


Read more about Toyota’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


46. Philips

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According to Philips’ website, the company recognises “the proven benefits of enhanced innovation, greater performance and employee satisfaction that derive from a diverse and inclusive workplace.” Philips says it is committed to having one in four women in senior leadership roles at the company by 2020.


Read more about Philips’ diversity and inclusion programs here.


45. KPMG

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Mary Lou Maher, Head of Global Inclusion and Diversity at KPMG International, told Universum, “to work at KPMG is to see the world differently, through many different perspectives and with a truly collaborative spirit. We believe in an inclusive culture where everyone can bring their skills, passions, capabilities, voices and differences to the table. This inclusiveness is core to our values and something we have lived and breathed throughout our history because we believe a future of inclusion is a better future for all.”


Read more about KPMG’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


44. Schlumberger

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A Schlumberger spokesperson told Universum, “We have a long-term commitment to hiring where we work, and achieving gender diversity across our organisation. We aim to attract top performers worldwide from the full depth and breadth of the talent pool.”

Read more about Schlumberger’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


43. Ford Motor Company

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Ford’s website notes several of its policies for a more inclusive workplace, including work-life flexibility programs.


Read more about Ford’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


42. Airbus Group

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According to Airbus’ website, “diversity is a core part of our identity. More than 130 nationalities are represented, and more than 20 languages are spoken within the company.” The company also writes that “Airbus promotes equal opportunities and supports people with both visible and non-visible (dis)ability.”


Read more about Airbus’ diversity and inclusion programs here.


41. Schneider Electric

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Tina Mylon, Schneider Electric’s senior vice president of talent and diversity, told Universum, “more and more, students seek a work environment that is inclusive and diverse and empowers their people to shape the future. At Schneider Electric, we strive hard every day to make this a reality and we are honoured by the Universum recognition.”


Read more about Schneider Electric’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


40. 3M

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According to 3M’s website, the company has “established a goal to double the pipeline of diverse talent in management by 2025 across all countries” and “to date, more than 50% of our top 100 leaders are diverse, and 30% of our board members are women.”


Read more about 3M’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


39. Deloitte

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “Deloitte is one of the largest accounting firms, but they take the time to visit students. It seems to be a friendly and diverse culture that focuses on both the big and small picture.”

Read more about Deloitte’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


38. The Boston Consulting Group (BCG)

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“Our goal is to increase diversity, unlocking the potential of every BCGer and client team member,” writes BCG Managing Director and Senior Partner Matt Krentz on the company’s website. “To do so, we invest in people and in the research that reveals which tools, programs, and cultural changes are necessary to deliver sustainable impact.”


Read more about BCG’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


37. PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers)

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PwC has been one of the main forces behind CEO Action, a business-driven coalition to advance diversity and inclusion at work.


Read more about PwC’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


36. ABB

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According to ABB’s website, “building a culture of diversity and inclusion makes each of us stronger and is critical to our success; a culture where individual differences are welcomed and we all unite to write the future together.”


Read more about ABB’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


35. Heineken

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Heineken has a push to increase gender diversity; according to its website, “female representation at senior levels grew to 20% from 19% between 2017 and 2018 and from almost 12% in 2011. Our ambition is to reach 25% by 2020.” As a whole, the company has “individuals from 66 different nationalities among our 870 senior managers.”


Read more about Heineken’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


34. Cisco Systems

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According to Cisco’s website, “we are proud to take both a national and global leadership role in a number of high profile collaborations to drive equity and create fully diverse and inclusive organisations.” The website also says that the company is committed to three diversity pledges: the CEO Action for Diversity & Inclusion pledge, the Parity Pledge, and the White House Equal Pay Pledge.


Read more about Cisco’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


33. Samsung

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According to Samsung’s website, “embracing diversity brings different experiences and perspectives that help us build a better tomorrow.” Samsung has employee resource groups for women, veterans, and LGBTQ folks.


Read more about Samsung’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


32. McKinsey & Company

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “McKinsey has a great reputation of merit-based promotions and the inclusion of diverse backgrounds.”


Read more about McKinsey’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


31. Volvo Group

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In March, Volvo Group announced several initiatives for improving gender equality at the automaker.


Read more about Volvo Group’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


30. ExxonMobil

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According to the company’s website, “within ExxonMobil’s executive employee population, 20% are women. This represents an increase of 63% over the past decade. This increase, in part, is a result of continued focus on early identification and focused development of high-performing female employees.”


Read more about ExxonMobil’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


29. Intel

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According to Intel’s website, at the company “we believe that a workforce made up of people with unique experiences, varied points of view, and diverse skills makes us a stronger company.”

Read more about Intel’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


28. Roche

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According to Roche’s website, “diversity and inclusion (D&I) is a high priority at Roche. We are one of the first major corporations in Europe to state our D&I goals publicly, and we have made substantial progress in achieving them.”


Read more about Roche’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


27. Volkswagen Group

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“Two factors are important for us: we need diverse people, and we need a working environment in which they can make the most of their talents,” Volkswagen AG’s Head of Diversity Elke Heitmüller wrote on the company’s website. “This motivates employees for the long term and ensures good results.”


Read more about Volkswagen’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


26. EY (Ernst & Young)

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One respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “diversity is very evident in the way companies run their campus presence and the people that represent them, such as EY.”


Read more about EY’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


25. BMW Group

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According to BMW Group’s website, “it’s the diverse input of our employees from over 140 countries that makes us what we are.”


Read more about BMW Group’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


24. IKEA

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “I have heard a lot of good things about IKEA from their employees. They are a market leader, innovative, and have an accepting company culture.”


Read more about IKEA’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


23. Daimler/Mercedes-Benz

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Daimler’s website notes a commitment to bringing together teams from different nations, genders, and generations to work together.

Read more about Daimler’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


22. Amazon

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “Amazon seems to provide a dynamic work environment with lots of opportunities, growth, and diverse culture.”


Read more about Amazon’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


21. IBM

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One respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “IBM has a lot of opportunities, seems like a positive workplace, and focuses on inclusion of all cultural backgrounds.”


Read more about IBM’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


20. PepsiCo

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A respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “PepsiCo has a great culture and invests in its younger employees. People come from extremely different backgrounds and there is a real diversity of thinking in this company.”


Read more about Pepsi’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


19. Huawei

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According to Huawei’s website, the company has identified a “need to open up the organisation to outside talent, and explore ways to unite the world’s best minds with a common purpose.”


Read more about Huawei’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


18. Shell

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“A diverse and inclusive workplace, embedded in our principles of honesty, integrity, and respect, brings together remarkable people and enables them to be themselves, writes Shell CEO Ben van Beurden on the company’s website.


Read more about Shell’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


17. Volvo Car Corporation

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “I hear really good things about Volvo Cars from friends that work there. They have flexible working and take care of their employees. I have seen passionate people who want to be better every day.”


Read more about Volvo Cars’ diversity and inclusion programs here.


16. Accenture

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One respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “Accenture really attracted me because of the company culture and their diversity and inclusion as well as the type of work they do.”


Read more about Accenture’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


15. BASF

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According to BASF’s website, the company has “a number of measures in place to establish diversity and inclusion worldwide” including global and regional employee resource groups.


Read more about BASF’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


14. Facebook

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Miranda Kalinowski, vice president of global recruiting at Facebook, highlighted some of the company’s initiatives to Universum. She says, “from a recruiting perspective, we have focused on developing pipelines, like our Facebook University Program, as well as applying a diverse slate approach to every open requisition. This is especially important, as we continue to grow and scale. We use a combination of Facebook-led initiatives and external partnerships to create more equitable opportunities across University Recruiting and Experienced Hires.”

“For our employees, we’ve identified and are actively integrating inclusion into the moments that matter: onboarding, building community, career development, performance and feedback, learning and training, and product innovation.”


Read more about Facebook’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


13. GE (General Electric)

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“For a quarter century, GE’s affinity network model has helped our company attract and develop diverse talent to tackle the world’s toughest challenges,” reads GE’s website. “These teams are self-managed and propelled by the goodwill of employees, bringing tremendous value to GE and to the many communities around the world where we live and operate.”


Read more about GE’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


12. Siemens

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According to Siemens’ website, “we establish an open work environment for all of our employees, regardless of cultural background, ethnicity, origin, sexual orientation, or gender identity, expression, or characteristics.”


Read more about Siemens’ diversity and inclusion programs here.


11. Bosch

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Heidi Stock, vice president of talent acquisition and diversity at Bosch, told Universum that their high position on the index shows “how many people at Bosch are working actively on an open and inclusive culture at Bosch worldwide. Our various activities on diversity and inclusion, from corporate side but also in the regions, add up to the image of Bosch being an inclusive and open employer.”


Read more about Bosch’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


10. The Coca-Cola Company

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “Coca-Cola is a mainstay in pop-culture. The brand sets the trend that others follow. They are a hugely influential company with the capacity to instigate and further great social change. I like the idea of being a part of a larger team who can positively impact local communities.”


Read more about Coca Cola’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


9. Nestlé

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According to Nestlé’s website, “we aim to embed diversity and inclusion across everything we do, focused on three core areas: culture, innovation, and society.”


Read more about Nestlé’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


8. Adidas

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “I really appreciate how creatively inspiring and inclusive this brand is.”


Read more about Adidas’ diversity and inclusion programs here.


7. Procter & Gamble (P&G)

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Marc Pritchard, P&G chief brand officer Philippe Farjon/AP Images

One student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “As a company, P&G is on the leading edge of their fields, constantly designing for the future. They seem to have a great dedication to innovation, leadership, and diversity. I have always felt they care for their employees.”


Read more about P&G’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


6. Apple

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “Apple is known for its innovation, inclusion, and being an all around great company to work for.”


Read more about Apple’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


5. Unilever

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Leena Nair, Unilever’s chief human resources officer, told Universum, “Diversity and inclusion sits at the heart of Unilever’s strategy. We are so proud of the many initiatives we have implemented both internally and externally, specifically our Unsterotype the workplace initiative ensuring that anyone who works for Unilever can bring their authentic selves to work.”


Read more about Apple’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


4. L’Oréal Group

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Eva Azoulay, L’Oréal Group’s global head of talent acquisition, told Universum, “We want to be exemplary in reflecting the diversity of the world, we want to have the strongest talent everywhere, whoever they are, and we strongly believe in greater richness, creativity, and performance of diverse teams.”


Read more about L’Oréal’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


3. Johnson & Johnson

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One student respondent to Universum’s study wrote, “Johnson & Johnson has a commitment to serving the whole patient and considering the whole employee, with a commitment to value, inclusion, excellence, and social responsibility.”


Read more about Johnson & Johnson’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


2. Microsoft

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Diego Rejtman, head of Microsoft university recruitment, told Universum, “We are proud to be fostering an environment where people can be themselves, bring all of who they are into the workplace and ultimately leverage the company as a platform to pursue their passions. We still have a lot of work to do but I am glad that our efforts are being recognised. Diversifying our workforce has been, and continues to be, a top priority for the company.”


Read more about Microsoft’s diversity and inclusion programs here.


1. Google

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A student respondent to Universum’s survey wrote, “Google has a reputation when it comes to diversity. They have a lot of programs to attract and engage high school students around the world and from different backgrounds and they have a very inclusive recruitment process.”


Read more about Google’s diversity and inclusion programs here.