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Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI)


We are committed to enhancing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at Digital Realty. Our CEO A. William Stein has signed the CEO Action Pledge for Diversity & Inclusion, the largest CEO-driven business commitment to advance diversity and inclusion in the workplace. Mr. Stein also became Co-Chair of Nareit's Dividends through Diversity, Equity & Inclusion CEO Council in 2021.

It is Digital Realty’s policy to recruit talent based on skill, knowledge, attitude and experience, without discrimination on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, age, family status, ethnic origin, nationality, disability or religious belief. We evaluate pay equity annually and have an affirmative action plan in place to ensure the diversity of our workplace will represent the qualified applicant pool in the regions where we operate.

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council

In 2020, Digital Realty formally launched its Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Employee Leadership Council to assess the current state and opportunities for progress, formulate a cohesive strategy and ultimately lead Digital Realty’s global DEI effort. The DEI Council is led by employees spanning various management levels and global regions with program support from Executive Sponsors. The DEI Council is led by employees spanning various management levels and global regions with program support from Executive Sponsors.

The DEI Council’s objectives include promoting accessibility and opportunities for all employees without discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion, national origin, mental or physical disability, pregnancy, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, marital status or age. For example, our obligation to make accommodations in accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), as well as other applicable laws and regulations is an ongoing one, and we will continue to assess our properties and make alterations as appropriate in this respect.

Accomplishments since the inception of the DEI Council include:

  • Launching three Employee Resource Groups (ERGs). In addition to our Women's Leadership Forum (WLF), we now have a Veteran's ERG, Black ERG, and LGBTQ+ ERF (Digital Pride)
  • Incorporating DEI as the fourth pillar to our areas of philanthropic focus
  • Benchmarking our diverse suppliers

A Platform for Women

Digital Realty’s Women’s Leadership Forum (WLF) was established in early 2018 with the purpose of bringing together the women at Digital Realty to promote a diverse and inclusive culture and help deliver the next wave of digital innovation. WLF’s goal is to provide an opportunity to collaborate with, mentor and seek input in regard to professional and career development. WLF’s executive and Board sponsors are our Chief Executive Officer, William A. Stein, and Board Member Mary Hogan Preusse, and has a regionally diverse steering committee with regional chapters in all of Digital Realty’s major markets.

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In 2020, WLF sponsored events included:

  • A virtual auction to raise funds for breast cancer awareness
  • Three community involvement events and two external customer events
  • Eight supported external virtual events with Women’s Tech Forum
  • Five virtual Masterclass sessions open to all employees
  • Four virtual connected events, such as book club, networking, and career development
  • Regional events including yoga, fitness, meditation and networking

Employee Engagement

Digital Realty has a global, leader-led and continuous approach to gathering and measuring employee engagement, including bi-annual surveys measuring company-wide and team engagement and executive employee roundtables. Our Employee Recognition program is designed to recognize employees who demonstrate our Company Values - Customers, Excellence, Talent, Teamwork, and Success – and deliver superior internal or external customer service, cost savings, productivity or work process improvements, and corporate citizenship.

Employees can be recognized in four ways: Manager Spot Award, peer-to-peer High Five Award, Quarterly Individual Going the Extra Mile (GEM) Award, Quarterly Team GEM Award and the Annual CEO Circle Award.
We partnered with a third-party engagement provider in 2020, to implement a more in-depth, global and bespoke employee engagement platform to anonymously collect employee input and give managers the tools they need to listen to employee feedback, focus in on what matters, and take action to enhance employee engagement. We conducted our Digital Voices Employee Survey in Q2, an annual survey of all employees to give us a real-time view of engagement conditions. In 2020, we had a 70% survey response rate. Team leaders are provided direct access to their team’s feedback and are accountable for reviewing and discussing results, collaborating with the team on positive actions, and ensuring incremental actions are completed to positively impact engagement.

In 2020, we communicated frequently with employees to help them cope, and build resiliency amidst the pandemic. We also took an active stance in communicating on social unrest, anti-discrimination and violence ensuring that employees understood that we believe in an inclusive company and society.

Training and Development

Digital Realty promotes an environment of personal and professional learning and development. Our Training Policy outlines our objectives to support Digital Realty through the ongoing training and development of employees to extend the range of individual performance, respond positively to change and support our customers consistently regardless of geographic location. We encourage employees at all levels and employment types, as well as contractors, to pursue training and education courses specific to their expertise. We provide a Tuition Reimbursement Program to reimburse all global, full-time employees for tuition, registration and the fees associated with higher education.
Additionally, our Digital University program includes training courses covering Operations, Legal, Ethics and Compliance, Management and Leadership, Risk, Risk Management, Sales, Diversity, Sales, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and Information Security and Privacy.

100% of our employees were offered training on Cybersecurity, Global Data Privacy, Insider Training, Anti-Money Laundering, and FCPA (Foreign Corrupt Practices Act) in 2020. All Operations employees received EOH&S training, Annual Security and Awareness Compliance Training, and Business Continuity Training.

In total, 1,796 Digital Realty employees spent an average of 30 hours per FTE on training and development, totaling 54,240 hours. An additional 1,423 contractors were trained at an average of 16 hours, totaling 22,275 hours. In 2020 also launched a Leadership Development training program to develop a leadership pipeline and advance leadership skills. The program consisted of quarterly training sessions for 40 employees at the director and above level.

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