Our vision is to be the responsible partner of choice for our workforce, clients, and other key stakeholders.
To us, this means being engaged, conscientious corporate citizens in the markets and communities where we operate – and providing our staff members with the resources and support they need to be successful.
DIVERSITY & INCLUSION:
BUILDING ON A STRONG FOUNDATION
While we are proud of our longstanding emphasis on diversity and inclusion, it is critical that we always strive for diversity of thought across our organization. We continue to compare favorably to our industry peers in terms of gender diversity, and we took a big step toward formalizing our strategy with the establishment of our Diversity & Inclusion Council, which will focus on building and developing an inclusive, diverse workforce.
“Investment teams that include women produce on average internal rates of return 12% higher than deals led by all-male teams. Deals led by gender-diverse teams also have lower failure rates.”
- Study by HEC Paris and MVision Private Equity Advisors, 2019
Embracing Gender Diversity
HarbourVest has been focused on building diverse teams since its founding, and we are proud to have above-average diversity and inclusion statistics relative to many of our competitors. At the end of 2019, women held 30% of all senior-level positions at the firm, considerably above the industry average of 10%.⁸ Additionally, 28% of our managing directors, the senior-most position at HarbourVest, are female.
At the end of 2019, women held 30% of all senior-level positions at HarbourVest, considerably above the industry average of 10%.⁸
8 Preqin, “Women in Private Equity”, 2019
DIVERSITY & INCLUSION COUNCIL
We launched our Diversity & Inclusion Council in June 2019 and are excited about the group’s potential to help us become even more diverse and inclusive going forward. Consisting of 17 senior leaders from across the company, the Council’s efforts will revolve around these three pillars.
Cultivate a diverse, inclusive workplace where
employees can succeed
Respect different viewpoints; be open
to input and new ideas
Understand and appreciate how our
differences make us stronger
The Council is focusing its efforts on five workstreams: recruiting, development, education, programs, and networks. Managing Director and Council member Rich Campbell, who leads our enterprise continuous improvement efforts, highlights progress made in 2019 and shares plans for 2020 and beyond.
Our people are our greatest asset, and the firm periodically conducts employee engagement surveys to gauge overall sentiment and identify areas for improvement. Based on this feedback, we made significant changes to several key programs and policies in 2019, all to better support both the professional and personal needs of our talented workforce.
New Flexible Work Program
- Introduced in June
- Allows staff to work flex hours and remotely
- Follow-up surveying has been positive
Expanded Global Parental Leave Policy
- All new parents receive two weeks of paid parental leave
- Eight weeks paid for primary caregiver
- Up to four months’ paid leave for primary caregiver/delivering mother
- Phased-in return back to work
“I’m grateful to HarbourVest for allowing me to spend 16 weeks at home with my newborn twins, and really appreciate the focus on ensuring a smooth transition back to work by offering a part-time re-entry. I cherish the days I have at home with my babies and applaud the firm for focusing on this.”
- Caitlin Ryan, Events Manager
New Global Anti-Discrimination and Anti-Harassment Policy
- Introduced new policy to ensure clarity and firm-wide adherence
- Focused on embracing diversity and inclusion
- Staff training in 2020
BRIDGING THE OPPORTUNITY DIVIDE:
TAPPING INTO TECHNOLOGY TALENT
While talent is equally distributed among people, opportunities are not. All too often, social and educational forces can limit access to economic and career opportunities for large sections of the population.
Technology – which is rapidly changing the systems that connect us to each other while also providing unprecedented access to data and information – is providing a unique opportunity for businesses to help close the gap, and HarbourVest is proud to do its part. We partner with two great organizations, Year Up in the US and Just IT based in London, to provide opportunities to emerging talent.
We began working with Just IT in 2018, and today we enjoy a strong, fruitful partnership with the program, which focuses on information technology (IT) apprenticeships. We were proud to be recognized as Just IT’s Best Advanced Level 3 Employer in 2019, and one of our team members, Alex Summers, was a finalist for the prestigious Best Advanced Level 3 Apprentice Award, which included more than 150 employees.
“Going through the Just IT program and getting a job at HarbourVest have completely changed the trajectory of my career, and really my life, for the better. Just IT prepared me, and HarbourVest took a chance on me. I wouldn’t be where I am today, with a career path and in the process of buying my first home, if those two things didn’t happen."
- Alex Summers, Technology Support Specialist
Just IT’s annual awards event recognizes the top achievements of IT & digital Apprentices and the forward-thinking employers which have supported them to success. HarbourVest was awarded Advanced Level 3 Apprenticeship Employer of the Year. Awards do not necessarily represent investor experience with HarbourVest or its funds, nor do they constitute a recommendation of HarbourVest or its services. Awards are based on surveys that are not limited to investors in HarbourVest funds and may not have included all of the investors in HarbourVest funds. They are not indicative of future performance.
HarbourVest Year Up alumni (from left to right) Ruben Miranda, William Cespedes, and Luis Candelario
We also work closely with Year Up, a national non-profit organization that trains nearly 4,000 low-income young adults annually for careers across a broad range of industries.
Three current members of our IT team – Luis Candelario, William Cespedes, and Ruben Miranda – went through the Year Up program and are now making meaningful contributions to our business and working towards additional degrees and certifications with assistance from the firm.
“My mom suggested I get into Year Up, and I owe her a big debt of gratitude. My time there, and the training and hands-on experience they provided, gave me the foundation to get into IT, learn, and build a career. I joined HarbourVest in 2015, and quickly learned that if you show the aptitude you will get opportunities to succeed and try different things. I started out as an entry-level support specialist and now lead our global infrastructure engineering team.”
- Ruben Miranda, Manager, Infrastructure Engineer
“I always wanted to work in finance, and thanks to the opportunities that both Year Up and HarbourVest opened up for me, I’m able to do what I love in my desired field. Year Up gave me the skills and helped me mature as a person, and HarbourVest has allowed me to develop and make mistakes while I learn.”
- William Cespedes, Systems Administrator
“The best thing about my opportunity at HarbourVest is that the firm encourages us to learn about all aspects of technology, so we get to touch everything and learn as we go. I also love my team. Everyone looks out for each other and we all bring different skills to the table. As we like to say, it’s our job to keep the lights on.”
- Luis Candelario, Technical Support Specialist
In addition to investing responsibly, we also prioritize sustainability and environmental concerns in our daily operations. With 10 offices around the world, we know that our operational ESG footprint matters, and we make efforts every year to become more ecologically friendly across various parts of our business.
Some highlights from 2019:
Sustainability is top of mind for the firm whenever we modify or renovate our workspace. In 2019, we completed a major renovation to the 11th floor of our Boston headquarters. In the process, we:
- Donated over 80 pieces of furniture and equipment (approximately 2.2 tons), thus preventing them from entering the waste stream
- Re-used a large portion of furniture (private offices, conference rooms, kitchen appliances) estimated at 11.5 tons versus discarding and buying new
- Re-used and redistributed nearly 50% of existing LED lighting
We are also proud of the efforts we made to further reduce our environmental footprint globally:
- Paper recycling efforts saved the equivalent of 20 trees
- Eliminated approximately 166,000 12-ounce bottles and cans from waste stream
- Removed plastic straws and Styrofoam cups
- Initiated kitchen waste recycling in all offices globally