Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Our success depends largely on a sustaining a diverse, multinational, multi-generational workforce. We recognize and value the breadth of diversity inherent within our ranks and are committed to embracing the cultural nuances that make us all unique. At Watts, we aim to promote a safe and inclusive workplace culture based on our values, mutual respect and dignity, and by ensuring measures are in place to safeguard an individual’s human rights.
As an equal opportunity employer, we will recruit, hire, compensate, train, promote and terminate individuals in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations, and without regard to a person’s race, color, religion, age, gender, national origin, citizenship status, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, veteran status or other protected status. We do not tolerate acts of discrimination, harassment or bullying at Watts. As embedded in our values, all Watts employees shall treat each other with respect, dignity and common courtesy, and avoid any behavior that compromises trust, quality of the work environment or the integrity of decision making.
Our diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) journey progressed after June 2, 2020, when Bob Pagano, our Chief Executive Officer, issued an open letter to our entire global workforce to express outrage over recent acts of violence against the Black community and to condemn systematic racism and discrimination against Blacks and other underrepresented minorities in the United States. This letter sparked a robust dialogue among Watts’ leaders and employees about what we are doing as a company to help create a more equitable, just, and inclusive society. As One Watts, we agreed that it is time to start transforming our words into real and sustainable actions.
We have appointed a manager of Talent Excellence to lead DEI and have formed several employee resource groups (ERGs) like “Black Matters at Watts” and “Women of Watts.” These groups have taken the lead in helping to shape our response to inequality and bias within our society and our company. As a company, and in partnership with our ERGs, we are focused on building programs, allocating resources, and partnering with select external organizations to drive meaningful change. While our efforts will continue to evolve and mature over time, these are our key areas of focus:
Awareness & Education
We are educating and facilitating conversations with all employees across the company to better understand cultural and race-related issues, and fostering inclusion through town hall meetings, anti-racism and anti-bias training, and our employee resource groups. We also craft periodic communications to highlight the voices and stories of underrepresented minorities, and to expose our employees to diverse cultures, perspectives, and experiences.
At Watts, we believe that employees who feel included are absorbed in and enthusiastic about their work; they find a greater sense of meaning in what they do, see a stronger connection between themselves and their team members, and bring their most authentic selves to work. These positive behaviors make a difference to us, our business, and our company culture. To better understand our employees’ experiences and views on equity and inclusion at Watts, we conducted a global employee survey focused on questions about diversity and inclusion. We then used our voice of employee as the main driver for our actions to make Watts an even better place to work for everyone.
Recruiting, Retention, & Advancement
We have enhanced diversity recruiting efforts by establishing strong relationships with select historically Black colleges and universities, including conducting on-campus recruiting for internship and permanent positions, and funding scholarships for talented students with the potential to become future employees at Watts. We have also strengthened our requirements that a diverse slate of candidates be interviewed and considered for all professional job openings. In addition, we leverage our existing leadership development program to create more of a focus on developing and mentoring Black and other underrepresented minority employees by providing executive mentors or career coaches for participants in the program and taking steps to ensure that the program participants represent a diverse slate of employees.
At Watts, we believe that being a diverse and inclusive company will ultimately make us a stronger and more successful company. We are committed to listening and learning from one another and to cultivating an environment where all people feel safe, valued, and empowered.
Bob PaganoCEO and PresidentWatts Water TechnologiesWe are fortunate to work for a company that is willing and wanting to have open conversations about our inherent biases, about respectful inclusion, and about working together with trust, integrity, and respect. I watch all of you live these values daily, as One Watts, and I am proud.
Watts Employee Resource Groups
Black Matters is dedicated to building programs, allocating resources and partnering with select external organizations to drive meaningful change for Black employees across the organization. The group’s key focus areas are (1) awareness and education of race-related issues and inclusivity, (2) recruitment, retention and advancement of Black employees by establishing strong relationships with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and diverse candidate slates, and (3) direct engagement with our employees to continue fostering an inclusive environment.
Women of Watts
Women of Watts (WoW) promotes and cultivates a more inclusive environment that champions and encourages the growth, development and success of women at all levels. By holding leadership accountable and raising awareness of obstacles, recommending and implementing solutions, and building relationships with allies, the group intends to create an organization where women can flourish, have influence, and are valued for their authentic selves. Ultimately, WoW envisions Watts as an industry leader known for developing world class female professionals.
Pride Matters exists as a support network and an inclusive space for LGBTQ+ colleagues and allies. The group encourages employees to be their authentic selves, both inside and outside of the organization, and promotes the value of having LGBTQ+ employees in all levels of the company. Focus areas are implementing programs that promote education, acceptance and celebration of the vast diversity within the LGBTQ+ community.
Vet Matters connects veterans and family members associated with the military to engage and discuss issues related to veterans, and to provide resources and support networks for transitions back into civil society. In addition, the group advocates for the recruitment and development of veteran candidates and employees, who bring unique, valuable skills and perspectives to the organization.
Latin Americans at Watts (LAW) Matters was created to share the heritage of Latin American employees across Watts, provide support to foster their culture and offer educational opportunities and networking, cultural and social events. The ERG's mission is to develop a network of employees to promote cultural diversity and professional development of its members, thereby creating a supportive environment for the Latin American community and contributing to the success of Watts' mission. Its vision statement is “to unite the Latin American community at Watts through a collaborative network that promotes advancement, cultural awareness, talent recruitment, retention and professional development.”
Tech Matters’ mission is to embed DEI best practices into innovation, R&D, engineering and tech activities, and to help advance the overall DEI goals within Watts. To support this, the group has four key focus areas: (1) acquiring and retaining quality talent to create diversity of thought and align with diverse customers and communities, (2) helping build an inclusive culture where innovation thrives, (3) performing outreach and networking to the largest pool of the most talented people, and (4) embedding DEI into engineering and tech policies and procedures to improve performance and consistency.
Eugene Curtain IIIManager of Talent Excellence and DEIWe are proud to launch employee resource groups and will continue evolving them to become powerful allies of the company, helping to create opportunities, drive innovation and increase market share. Groups will also bring awareness and education of issues critical to their platform, and foster an inclusive workplace. To support our One Watts strategy, we strive to provide several opportunities for employees' voices to be heard and to address any issues impacting their growth, development and belonging.