Latest survey shows BPO, finance sectors lead in LGBT+ workplace inclusion

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Based on a new study, LGBT+ inclusion is smart business, and certain baseline policies are an expected norm among multinational employers.

This is the key finding of a new survey of LGBT+ inclusion in the Philippine corporate setting, released October 2021 by the nonprofit organization Philippine Financial & Inter-Industry Pride (PFIP). The group’s 50 members include some of the biggest BPOs and financial services companies in the country.

The survey drew more than100 respondents, evenly split between PFIP members and non-members. Respondents include local conglomerates and established Filipino corporations, a sign of the widening standard for LGBT+ workplace inclusion. The data thus represents employees from business organizations nationwide.

“The results are hugely encouraging. They prove that corporate benchmarks have evolved, and that LGBT+ inclusion is a valid, viable expectation of any progressive company,” says PFIP Chair Weena Ekid, an executive at JP Morgan Chase in the Philippines. “We’ve seen this change ourselves, in our work pioneering corporate LGBT+ inclusion programs for the past seven years.”  The study also highlights PFIP’s collaborative work with these inclusive organizations.

The survey includes many companies from the BPO and financial sectors, which are regularly seen as pacesetters for local employment standards. Many of these companies are part of global organizations, and are thus guided by global mandates to pursue and implement inclusion locally.


“This is an extremely useful update to the standards for LGBT+ inclusion in the Philippine workplace,” according Drew Fernandez, PFIP Board Advisor and Global Chief People Officer at The Bottling Investments Group of The Coca Cola Company. “Everyone has diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) goals. But to have current, very specific numbers from sought-after employers—including banking and professional services, once assumed to be very conservative—confirms new norms by a new, rising generation. Talented workers will be able to choose their workplaces according to where they feel respected and included.”

The survey measured six factors: inclusive policies; inclusive benefits; organizational support via leadership representation and employee groups; technology for inclusion; efforts to educate and enable; and outreach via CSR and thought leadership.

The largely positive findings also show areas for improvement: wider benefits for same-sex partners; clear policies for transgender employees; and action to spread inclusion beyond the industry and its relatively privileged workforce.

“These results confirm that we’re on the right track to a workplace truly inclusive for LGBT+ talent,” says Chris Eugenio, PFIP Board of Trustee and independent DEI consultant. “These numbers show concrete steps taken by companies, both multinational and local, who recognize that talent has no gender, and who substantiate that recognition in different ways. But we also plan to improve, and with the specific benchmarks here we can be strategic in our next steps. We can do it. And we can do better.”

For questions, information or to arrange a presentation of the findings, contact PFIP via secretariat@pfip.com.ph.

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