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Talking diversity and inclusion with Andrea Dunlop

Mar 07, 2019

With International Women’s Day taking place this week, we spoke to our CEO, Merchant Acquiring, Europe, Andrea Dunlop, about the steps the payments industry can take to promote diversity and inclusion

When it comes to equality in the workplace, how far do you think PayTech has come?

From my perspective, the payments and technology sectors have come a long way over the past decade, and that has been driven by businesses and associations taking significant steps to address the gender imbalance. Paysafe has also made headway this year by making diversity and inclusion a strategic priority, driven by our CEO and endorsed by our Board.

The benefits of this approach are clear – in our most recent employee survey, three quarters of our team members would recommend Paysafe as great place to work, and 77% see us as a diverse and inclusive company. Of course, this doesn’t mean that all the work has been done in this area; the industry as a whole can and should be doing more to promote and grow diversity and inclusion. We are still in the process of taking initial steps on our diversity and inclusion journey and have more to do.

Has Paysafe introduced any recent initiatives?

We’ve just launched a new Diversity & Inclusion (D&I) strategy and proactive plan to build on the foundations established in 2018. As part of this, we have made D&I training mandatory for the entire team every two years, with workshops for the executive team and senior managers. We have a global steering committee, which meets on a regular basis to discuss progress in promoting diversity and to develop new initiatives, and we have D&I ambassadors in each of our offices who are there to encourage inclusion across our international team.

The focus on D&I has already landed us recognition in Canada as a Parity-Certified employer. Whilst we acknowledge that this is only a stepping stone on our journey, this is a really exciting certification, as it not only tells us that we are moving in the right direction, it also helps to attract even more diverse new talent, especially in decision-making and senior management roles, bringing us even closer to achieving our D&I goals.

What impact do these kinds of initiatives have on a business day-to-day?

The impact of D&I programmes for businesses is overwhelmingly positive, and boil down to three key things: higher job satisfaction; lower staff turnover; and higher business productivity. Basically, if employees – whatever their sex, gender, ethnicity or social background – feel that they are valued and supported by their managers and colleagues, then they will feel happier in their job. If they are happy in their work, they will work harder and want to stay – ultimately benefiting the business by boosting output and ensuring it retains talent and expertise.

What are Paysafe’s D&I goals for 2019?

As a result of our work in recent years, women now account for 48% of our Leadership Excellence programme, 44% of our Management Excellence programme and 48% of our High Potential Programme.

For 2019, we want to go further and build on these figures. Our goal is for women to represent 55% of the members of each of these programmes to help our female staff achieve the career they want within Paysafe. We have also signed the UK Women in Finance Charter, committing ourselves to ensuring that women make up at least 30% of our senior talent by 2023.

But our commitment to diversity extends beyond our walls – we are dedicated to increasing inclusion across the payment and even the technology sectors. We sponsor industry groups including Wnet, Women in PayTech and the European Women’s Payment Network (EWPN). We also support the FT 125 Women’s Forum to help talented women at mid-career level to progress into leadership roles.

What advice do you have for other businesses considering new D&I strategies?

If you have ambitions for your business to grow and be a true market leader, you need to have the best talent, and that means attracting employees from a wide range of backgrounds and experiences.

Change doesn’t happen overnight, though – being a truly diverse and inclusive company requires continuous effort and long-term commitment. You need to be ready to evolve and adapt as you go to truly succeed. The rewards are huge though – with an environment where employees are valued and respected, you can be sure that your business has the foundations it need to thrive in the 21st Century.

To find out more about Paysafe’s commitment to D&I, visit: