Directly linked to our mission to make it easier for everyone to experience the world, Inclusion, Diversity, Belonging and Wellbeing (IDBW) have been a core part of our company culture since day one. Creating a workplace where everyone feels welcome and able to do their best work is no easy job. It’s one that evolves over time and will never officially be ‘done’. But that’s ok, because it’s both highly rewarding and vitally important.
We’re committed to fostering a more inclusive Booking.com experience for the millions of travellers, partners and communities around the world who use our platform every day. This ongoing journey starts with our very own employees, who represent over 140 nationalities and a wide range of ethnic and social backgrounds, genders and sexual orientations.
…is to achieve gender parity (45-55%) in all units and at all levels of our organization.
This is not only an HR goal – this is a journey all of our employees are part of. Why? Because it has a far-reaching impact on local and global societies and leads to lasting improvements on our product and technology. It is the right thing to do. Societal norms and labor market gaps create a challenge but this only makes our ambition stronger. Every day, we make small steps and big investments towards more equal representation throughout every part of our business. Our efforts are being recognized by our employees and by external publications, such as the Financial Times, making us one of Europe’s leaders in IDBW. But there’s no better reward than seeing our shared ambition coming to life – and this is how we do it:
A travel destination is more than just sights to see or activities to try – it offers the chance to meet new people, experience different cultures and understand other ways of living. Through our Booking Booster accelerator programme, we helped entrepreneurial startups to scale-up their impact in making tourism more sustainable and inclusive. Since its inception, the Booking Booster has helped 45 different organisations scale up and provided over €10 million in funding. Meanwhile, to give back to the places that have given us so much, we created Booking Cares – an employee volunteer programme that empowers our workforce to drive inclusion, wellbeing, and sustainability via volunteering, donations, and more – all during working hours. Since the programme began in 2014, over 172,000 work hours have been donated, by almost 6,000 employees, across more than 2,100 projects worldwide.
To us, Wellbeing means that each individual can feel socially connected, healthy, content and purposeful at Booking.com. Different identities have different opportunities, challenges and needs which is why we offer everyone an Employee Assistance Program where qualified counselors support and guide during all life stages and changes. We also believe that mental health requires daily care and that is why our colleagues have a free unlimited subscription to Headspace – a wellbeing app as well as an array of online courses around our main pillars of health: physical, emotional, mental and social. Our dedicated Wellbeing staff hosts global events including livestream sessions, featuring renowned speakers and mentors. We put the spotlight on resources, ideas, panels and activities that teach us how to help others and ourselves be well.
At Booking.com, learning goes beyond acquiring new tactical and strategic skills. It expands our horizons and opens our eyes to new ideas and perspectives that make us better individuals. Learning is an essential driving force for our IDBW efforts as we continue to educate and inspire employees and partners. We achieve this velocity through multiple trainings, hackathons, webinars and partnerships with an ever-growing list of leading programs such as Catalyst, Everywoman, Workplace Pride and Community Business.
We pride ourselves on our diverse and inclusive culture and see the value in championing women as they face barriers to their career progression. B.Champion is our learning and development program for women who want to prepare for the next step in their career. During the six-month program, participants are grouped together in a supportive community cohort, are paired with a senior-level mentor from Booking.com and follow a structured personal development program. Meanwhile, the Booking Holdings Women in Leadership Program develops rising women leaders in the organization; equipping them with tools to elevate their leadership skills and strengthen their network across our family of brands.
Every year we celebrate the achievements of inspiring colleagues at Booking.com and give them a platform for recognition: the Playmaker & Inclusionist Awards. The awards seek to recognize colleagues who empower and inspire others and who have done much to promote the mission of IDBW. All employees are invited to nominate their role models, after which a global jury reviews all submissions and selects the winners. It is our way to express our deep appreciation and admiration for those who embody our values and focus on making our world a more open-minded place.
Booking.com was recently ranked #3 in the Financial Times’ 2021 Diversity Leaders list of European employers, and we couldn’t be more proud. It’s a great recognition for our colleagues around the world, who effortlessly work to create a welcoming and open environment in which people can connect and learn from each other.
Driven by our employees with the support of the Booking.com IDBW team, our Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) are a driving force in creating the most open, welcoming and empowering work environment possible. Backed by members and allies, our ERGs not only foster inclusion, but drive our business goals and product evolution as well.
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