Diversity/Careers in Engineering & Information Technology



April/May 2011

Diversity/Careers April/May 2011 Issue

Women of color in IT
Aerospace & defense
Insurance IT
Manufacturing tech
Civil engineering
BEYA conference

Veteran-owned companies
WBENC conference preview
News & Views
Regional roundup
Supplier diversity

Diversity in action
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Diversity In Action

Wells Fargo looks for skilled IT pros in its tech and ops group

The company chairman, president and CEO heads its enterprise diversity council, and the technology folks have their own company-wide diversity group

Wendy McKoy is a VP and head of talent acquisition at Wells Fargo.Banking giants Wells Fargo and Wachovia merged in 2008, but the integration of technologies between the two parts of the new company is still a major focus for IT pros who work there, says Wendy McKoy, VP and head of talent acquisition. The merger created North America's most extensive distribution system for financial services, including more than 9,000 stores, 12,000 ATMs and the Internet sites www.wellsfargo.com and www.wachovia.com.

"The types of IT jobs we're hiring for are most frequently apps systems engineers, info security engineers, database analysts, systems architects and network and systems engineers," McKoy says.

The company's level of technical hiring increased Exec Larry Conyers also serves as chair of the tech and ops diversity council. significantly last year over the year before. The merger was announced in late 2008, and there wasn't much hiring in 2009. "But volumes increased dramatically last year," McKoy notes. Most hiring has been and will continue to be internally focused: "We're committed to providing opportunities to our internal and displaced team members before hiring externally," McKoy says.

There are jobs for seasoned technologists in the technology and ops group (TOG). Some of the hottest skills are WebSphere admin, WebLogic, Teradata, Tibco, .Net and nJ2EE.

"There are some pockets of IT where niche skills are limited to banking and some healthcare providers," McKoy says. For example, Wells Fargo uses systems like CSC Hogan that aren't being taught anymore. "It's not a hot technology, but it's used in financial services companies, so it's a skill set we're on the lookout for and develop internally."

Wells Fargo targets the diverse senior-level technical pro by partnering with national organizations like Black Data Processing Associates (BDPA) to provide resources and career opportunities. Last year the BDPA recognized Wells Fargo as a winner in its 2010 Best Companies for Blacks in Technology, McKoy says. She adds that Wells Fargo has done corporate sponsorships with BDPA, used its resume database, attends the society's conferences and job fairs and works at the local level with chapters, providing funding and speakers.

Last year the company also participated in diversity conferences held by the National Black MBAs, the National Society of Hispanic MBAs, the National Society of Asian American Professionals and Reaching Out (LGBT MBAs).

Wells Fargo believes diversity training helps raise awareness among its team members, says Larry Conyers, head of enterprise utility services and chair of the TOG diversity council. The company offers a new Web-based diversity course as a tool for all team members. There's also a "diverse leaders" program. Ethnically diverse, high-performing team members are nominated for the program; they get access to top execs to learn their secrets of success in a diverse business environment.

John G. Stumpf, Wells Fargo's chair, president and CEO, heads up the enterprise diversity council (EDC), which is made up of senior leaders from every line of business and support area, says Conyers, who is a member. The EDC works to put strategies into action; its members act as advisors for the company's operating and management committee members and leaders across the country. "We share best practices and support and advise all the lines of business," Conyers says.

Every line of business also has its own diversity team, focusing on awareness and inclusion for its specific line of business. TOG, for example, has nineteen diversity teams across the country. "We have a very wide geography in technology and operations, with large populations and different needs," Conyers explains. "The site areas focus on those relatively local needs."

There are nine employee groups, which Wells Fargo calls "team member networks." They focus on Asians, Black/African Americans, people with disabilities, Hispanics/Latinos, Middle Eastern employees, Native Americans, LGBT team members, veterans and women. Each group is officially supported by the company, which provides two senior-level executive advisors.

The program is grass roots in that it's all volunteer, Conyers says. "Anyone can join any networks they want to. The groups are also virtual, so no matter where you live you can be part of the network." An enterprise leadership team coordinates events that can be attended as teleconferences, and local chapters let people meet face-to-face in their own area.

Wells Fargo believes in effective mentoring to support people interested in leadership development. TOG, for example, has an informal, online approach to mentoring. It's voluntary and self-directed, matching the mentor and mentee.

"Our team members are eligible for a wide array of traditional benefits, and we are also committed to supporting their work/life balance," McKoy says. "Many of our positions allow for telecommuting arrangements, and we provide tools and resources for our team members to build and maintain their personal resiliency."

Wells Fargo partners with Life Care, a group that provides counseling and referral services for elder- and childcare. The company has backup child care programs, tuition and adoption reimbursement and scholarships for children of team members, and also domestic partner benefits. "And of course we provide great team-member discounts and savings on financial products and services," McKoy points out.

Many team members are heavily involved in community service. Nearly 40,000 of them logged 1.3 million volunteer hours in 2010, a ten percent increase from the previous year. McKoy is a board member of the American Foundation for the Blind; she represents Wells Fargo as talent acquisition leader and has her own passion for the organization as well.

"Many of us have our own pet areas," Conyers notes. His is Reading First, which supports reading in local schools. Other IT pros at Wells Fargo work with BDPA to promote their field to high school students, McKoy adds.

"Wells Fargo is a place where high-caliber team members can be challenged and can find a place to grow.

"We're making efforts to reach out to a diverse pool of candidates, as well as to federal agencies that have a state and local infrastructure to recruit the disabled and those in the Veterans Administration. Larry Conyers' team has done an amazing job," McKoy concludes.



Headquarters: San Francisco, CA
Employees: 280,000
Revenues: $12.4 billion in 2010
Business: Financial services

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