Our commitments and actions

We’re taking action to remove barriers to our colleagues, our customers and our communities realising their potential. This supports an inclusive environment where our colleagues can flourish and helps to drive the strong and purposeful delivery of our strategy.

Different ideas and perspectives help us innovate and grow in a sustainable way. But we know we aren’t yet diverse enough at all levels.

Our global goals

To achieve progress, we are focused on specific Group-wide goals for which we hold senior executives accountable. Alongside Group goals, some executives have local priorities such as combatting social inequality in the UK and the development of Hispanic representation in the US, to allow flexibility for a broader diversity and inclusion agenda that is contextually relevant.

Per cent
Fact: Our target is to have 35 per cent of senior leadership roles filled by women by 2025

Global gender representation

After achieving our ambition of having 30% of senior leadership roles held by women in 2020, we set a new goal to reach 35% by 2025.

We remain on track, with 33.3% of senior leadership roles held by women at the end of 2022, an increase of 1.6 percentage points since 2021.

At least double
Fact: Our target is to at least double the number of Black employees in senior leadership by 2025

Global ethnicity representation

We are on track to double the number of Black colleagues in senior leadership by 2025, having increased the number of Black senior leaders by 37% since 2020.

To better reflect the communities we serve, we have enhanced our approach and set a goal of having 3.4% of Black heritage3 colleagues in senior leadership across the UK and US combined by 2025.

We are on track to meet this, with 2.5% of leadership roles held by Black heritage colleagues in 2022.

Fact: Our target is to have a score of at least 75% in our inclusion index

Inclusive culture

Our inclusion index looks at how inclusive our culture is by measuring colleagues’ feelings of belonging, psychological safety, perception of fairness and trust in our annual all-employee engagement survey.

At the end of 2022, we scored 76% favourable – one point higher than our goal and four points above the financial service industry benchmark.

1 Senior leadership refers to employees performing roles classified as 3 and above in our global career band structure.
2 The focus for this goal is on the UK and US, where Black colleagues are particularly under-represented. The starting point is 31 December 2020.
3 We define Black heritage to include all colleagues in the UK who identify as Black or mixed race where one of the ethnicities is stated as Black, and in the US who identify as Black or African-American.

Our four priorities

We have made progress but we know we still have more to do. Our four priorities are focused on actions that improve representation of under-represented groups and build an inclusive culture across the organisation:

How we hire directly influences how diverse we are. We are focused on ensuring our hiring processes continue to be fair, transparent and inclusive for all. This ensures we attract and hire the strongest candidates including those from diverse talent pools and provide a positive candidate experience.

Our actions:

  • More than 10,500 hiring managers have completed the mandatory inclusive hiring training, which is aimed at enabling fair and inclusive hiring decisions that are in line with our hiring principles
  • We partner with specialist recruiters to improve the diversity of shortlisted candidates
  • In the UK and US, we monitor the ethnicity of candidates through the recruitment process to provide feedback about hiring practices
  • We support the 10,000 Black Interns initiative to provide internships to Black candidates in the UK. Half of the 2022 cohort are due to join HSBC as graduates in 2023
  • We target a wider student population to improve the diverse representation of our global graduate intake. In 2022, almost half (48.1%) of new graduates were women and 2.3% were Black
  • We have adapted our global graduate and intern selection process to meet the needs of neurodiverse candidates and received a 91% ‘fully fit for purpose’ rating in a 2022 neurodiversity audit

Note: The ethnicity representation data is based on employees who have shared their ethnicities, in markets where it is legally permissible and culturally acceptable to collect this information.

We are focused on ensuring our development and promotion processes continue to be fair and equitable to all. In addition, we have programmes in place for under-represented groups to help their development and progression opportunities.

Our actions:

  • Since 2017, 38% of women on our Accelerating Female Leaders development programme have either been promoted or moved to a new role and we have retained 87% of participants
  • A quarter of participants on our uGrow talent development programme in Asia-Pacific achieved a career move in 2022. The programme supports emerging talent in mid-level roles, with women making up 53.6% of 2022 participants
  • HSBC senior leaders have coached more than 2,600 female colleagues, as part of our Coaching Circles programme, to help them develop leadership skills and build professional networks
  • We partner with specialist firms to help provide sponsorship and mentoring for Black heritage colleagues, for example through the Solaris programme for Black heritage women in the UK
  • We offer a development programme for Black heritage colleagues in Global Banking & Markets in the UK. 25% of participants at director level and 14% at associate director level have been promoted within 12 months of starting the programme. In 2023, we will extend the programme to Commercial Banking in the UK and to the US, with an additional focus on Hispanic colleagues
  • In 2022, we began to collect socio-economic diversity data of our colleagues within the UK, with the aim to improve social mobility. We will use this data to help us understand the representation and progression of colleagues from lower socio-economic backgrounds

Note: The ethnicity representation data is based on employees who have shared their ethnicities, in markets where it is legally permissible and culturally acceptable to collect this information.

We want everyone to feel included, valued and respected at work. We’re removing potential barriers and encouraging our leaders to help build an inclusive environment where difference is celebrated, and colleagues choose to stay and develop their careers.

Our actions:

  • Executive sponsorship of our global employee networks (for example, our Balance network to promote gender diversity) is provided by the Group Executive Committee and Non-Executive Directors of the Holdings Board, who champion these employee resource groups and drive change
  • In 2022, we refreshed our flexible working policies globally for 90% of employees to make it easier to request a flexible working arrangement. Choices include flexible and staggered hours, job sharing, reduced hours and hybrid working
  • Our inclusive policies support employees through different life stages. Recent policy updates include gender neutral parental leave in the US and Australia, making private medical insurance cover for LGBTQ+ partners an option for around 90% of employees globally, and expanding our gender affirmation benefits to the UK, Canada and the Philippines
  • In 2022, HSBC UK was recognised by the Business Disability Forum as a Gold Standard employer with the highest score (95.8%) achieved since BDF refreshed its Disability-Smart Framework in September 2021
  • ‘We value difference’ is one of our values. The performance of our employees is assessed against both what they achieve and how they demonstrate our values

A more inclusive society means opportunities for everyone. We are committed to identifying and removing the different barriers customers face in accessing financial services and to partnering with external organisations to open up opportunities for those groups who have been historically disadvantaged.

Our actions:

  • We are investing in academic sponsorship programmes that help diverse young people enter our industry, and skills-building programmes for under-represented groups in the community
  • We are improving the accessibility of our digital services and products for customers and colleagues. Over 2,000 colleagues participated in digital accessibility training or awareness events in 2022 as we continue to make our public website more accessible
  • We have launched a USD1 billion Female Entrepreneur Fund as part of a programme of support, called HSBC Roar, to help break down the barriers female business leaders face when scaling their businesses
  • We introduced new processes in the UK to enable Ukrainian refugees to open bank accounts, following a similar scheme for Afghan settlers

Global diversity data

We’re creating an accurate and transparent view of our workforce so we can effectively target our actions and measure our progress.

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