Diversity & inclusion
We promote diversity at ING not just because it is the right thing to do. We promote diversity because it’s essential for delivering on our strategy.
In order to stay a step ahead, we need teams with a healthy mix of contrasting perspectives and backgrounds. These kinds of teams are more creative, faster to adapt and more inventive with their solutions.
At ING we encourage you to bring your whole self at work. Read the personal stories of some of our colleagues.
As our business grows, the customers we serve are increasingly diverse. Giving them an unbeatable experience is central to ING’s Think Forward strategy. To better understand our customers, we need a workforce that’s as diverse as they are. At the same time, we want everyone working at ING to feel included and accepted for who they are, whatever their background or belief – Everyone is welcome at ING. This is the focus of our diversity and inclusion approach.
Inclusion is written in our Orange Code, which encourages us to help others to be successful. This is good for business, because people perform better when they feel included and free to be themselves. To stay a step ahead we need teams with a healthy mix of contrasting perspectives and backgrounds, as they are more creative, faster to adapt and more inventive with their solutions.
Discrimination’ includes any distinction, exclusion or preference made on the basis of gender, cultural background, experience, religion, race, ethnicity, disability, family responsibility, political opinion, sexual orientation or social origin, that has the effect of nullifying or impairing equal opportunity or treatment in employment.
Any distinction, exclusion or preference not based on the inherent requirements of the job is deemed as discrimination. At ING we denounce all forms of discrimination. We also promote equal remuneration for male and female employees for work of equal value. We are working together to create an inclusive workplace and, in turn, play our part in building an inclusive world.
To support our ongoing efforts to create meaningful change, we have measures that aim to keep discrimination from happening within our company – towards both our customers and employees. For example, our Global Code of Conduct lists 10 core principles that we expect from our employees. These include creating and maintaining a safe working environment and speaking up to report misconduct.
What matters here
We expect our leaders to:
- Speak confidently about ING’s diversity and inclusion approach and ambition for change.
- Think about meetings and interactions with colleagues – who is being heard, listened to and who is not. Take steps to include all voices.
- Be conscious of the decisions they make about people – are they objective or subjective?
- Actively look for opportunities to introduce different perspectives into their teams, whether through external hires or short-term internal assignments.
- Hire the person who will add the most value to the team, not just to meet targets.
Ongoing efforts to create change
We have shown we value diversity and inclusion (see ‘How are we doing’ below), but we also recognise we have work to do. That’s why we have introduced the 70% principle.
In a nutshell, it gives managers a basis for building mixed teams around appropriate dimensions of diversity. The principle strives for a 30% difference in team make-up. Managers will choose their focus but will keep in mind our global priorities – gender, nationality and age group – and the 70% principle.
We are aware that diversity is about more than these global priorities and will continue our efforts to include all people, no matter what their cultural background, experience, religion, sexual orientation, perspectives, viewpoints etc. This is part of our ongoing efforts to create meaningful change.
With this principle we acknowledge we need to do more, e.g. to make gender balance more representative, in particular in leadership positions. Of course, simply changing the balance won’t guarantee everyone feels included or confident to contribute to ING’s future candidly, openly and without reservation. But inclusion begins by taking measures to get the mix right.
ING’s Global Code of Conduct
The ING Global Code of Conduct builds on the values and behaviours in our Orange Code and links them to our policies, minimum standards and guidelines. It sets out the 10 principles for conduct we expect from our employees in their everyday activities. This includes the principle that every ING employee is entitled to a safe working environment. Fostering a safe working environment enhances employee engagement, improves wellbeing and creates a strong performance culture. ING does not tolerate discrimination, harassment, bullying, sexual or other forms of intimidation, aggression and violence.
We have a Diversity manifesto (PDF 0,1 MB) that applies to all employees worldwide.
ING has more than 20 employee networks globally that help us advance our diversity and inclusion efforts. These networks bring together like-minded people within ING who want to make a difference. They include networks promoting cultural diversity, for example, LGBT employees, women, and for employees with a disability.
Diversity & inclusion week
To showcase the diversity of people within ING and help everyone to feel included, whatever their background, culture, experience, religion or sexual orientation, we ran a global diversity and inclusion week in June 2019. All employees globally were invited to get involved in more than 150 activities across ING.
Additional initiatives to improve diversity at ING include:
- appointing dedicated diversity and inclusion ambassadors in the countries and business units
- more diversity in succession planning
- improving the leadership appointment process.
Diversity on the Management Board & Supervisory Board
For the Supervisory Board and Management Board there is a 30% gender target set by the Dutch government. The Supervisory Board met this in 2019. Three of its nine members (33%) are now female. However, the Management Board is not there yet. Nevertheless, in 2019 we announced the appointment of Pinar Abay to the Management Board with effect from 1 January 2020. This took the number of women on the Management Board to two out of seven members. When looking at board composition, we look at diversity in a broad sense, striving for factors such as nationality, gender, age, education and work background. We have a diversity and competence matrix, which provides a clear overview of the aspects of diversity in our Management Board.
How are we doing?
The following achievements show ING values diversity and inclusion, while recognising there is still work to do.
- UN standards of conduct for business on tackling discrimination against lesbian, gay, bi, trans, & intersex people
- UN Global Compact's Women Empowerment Principles
ING supports and is committed to these UN initiatives to support sustainable change in society and because we believe that differences in age, background, gender, physical ability, sexual orientation and religious beliefs contribute to a stronger ING that’s better equipped to respond to challenges and opportunities. Endorsing these initiatives are important steps to demonstrate to ourselves and others that we take equality seriously, and a guide to how we promote equality in practice.
Bloomberg Gender Equality Index
ING is one of the 325 companies recognised in the 2020 Bloomberg Gender Equality Index as a company committed to a more equal and inclusive workplace. This is the fifth year in which we are included in the listing. The Index offers public companies the opportunity to disclose information on how they promote gender equality across five separate areas. These are company statistics, policies, community engagement, and products and services.
In 2019, the third year in a row, ING continues to take part in Equileap, the external assessment focused on gender equality. In the 2018 Equileap report on gender equality ING was ranked as one of the top 200 companies. Equileap is the first organisation that provides an in-depth cross-sector ranking that examines gender equality based on 19 criteria. The Equileap report assessed over 3,000 companies.
‘Diversity Leaders 2021’ recognition by Financial Times
ING has been officially recognised by the Financial Times as a diversity leader and one of Europe’s most inclusive companies. In an independent study that assessed employees’ perception of companies’ inclusiveness or efforts to promote various aspects of diversity, ING was listed in 326th place out of 850 companies. The Financial Times looked at a wide range of employers focusing specifically on gender, age, ethnicity, disability and sexual orientation.
Workplace Pride Global Benchmark
ING is a founding partner of the 'Workplace Pride - International platform for LGBTI (Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Transgender and Intersex) Inclusion at Work'. Its activities include the International Workplace Pride Global Benchmark. This benchmark scores companies in eight areas and identifies best practices, looking into ways to raise the standards. In 2020 to ensure that the Global Benchmark reflects progress being made in the past year and key areas of focus for LGBT+ employees globally, WPP again raised the bar and ING scored 72.3%. This earned us the recognition of Workplace Pride Ambassador – an excellent achievement. In 2019, ING scored a 60.6% at the Workplace Pride Global Benchmark.
Declaration of Amsterdam
ING has been a leader in LGBT workplace equality in the Netherlands since 2004 and was the first company to sign the Declaration of Amsterdam, a commitment to take leadership in creating a corporate culture where LGBT employees are valued, can be themselves and can realise their full potential.