Inclusion, Diversity and Equity at Vertex
Inclusion, Diversity and Equity (ID&E) are core to Vertex’s ability to create and deliver transformative medicines for people with serious diseases. We believe in these principles not only because it’s the right thing to do, and it is, but also because our business depends on it. We are the most innovative, make the best decisions for patients and attract the highest caliber of talent when we have an inclusive, diverse and equitable workforce and culture.
Fostering a culture where each employee has a strong sense of belonging because they feel, and are, valued for sharing their perspectives and challenging ideas across differences
Equip all Vertexians with the skills and resources to activate and live ID&E in their day-to-day interactions and decisions
Ensuring that our workplaces reflect the rich diversity of our communities, recognizing that each of us is different based on our life experiences, identities, backgrounds and cultures
Invest to address gaps in representation in our talent pipeline, with a focus on racial, ethnic, cultural and gender equity
Promoting balanced representation and fair treatment by providing the opportunities, information and resources needed so each of our employees can grow and thrive
Embed inclusive and equitable practices throughout the employee experience
Soon after, we launched our Employee Resource Networks (ERNs), which strengthen community and belonging within Vertex across functions and levels, provide employees with access to peer and executive mentors and professional development, and amplify the voices, insights and experiences of traditionally underrepresented groups. We have four ERNs:
- BRAVE – Recognizes the veteran and first responder community and promotes the unique talents of these employees
- IWILL (Inspiring Women in Leadership and Learning) – Seeks to strengthen Vertex’s efforts in attracting, retaining, developing and enhancing the career satisfaction of women and contributing to their professional advancement
- VIBE (Vertex Includes Boundless Ethnicities) – Supports the empowerment and growth of our racially and ethnically diverse employees as leaders, building a diverse community based on trust and respect
- Vertex PRIDE – Supports, provides visibility of and celebrates our LGBTQ+ employees and allies
Hear from members of our ERNs
We also launched our inaugural ID&E week in 2017 to provide an opportunity for Vertexians to connect and explore the important role ID&E plays in our business, culture and communities. While we recognize that ID&E must be activated and sustained every day throughout the year, this week provides a chance for Vertexians to step back from our daily routines, reflect on recent world events and take a holistic look at how we work together and the ways in which we can improve. Our fourth ID&E week in November 2020 was completely virtual and featured speakers such as Dr. Ibram X. Kendi and Dr. Robert Livingston.
In 2019 we began formal ID&E learning for our senior leaders and in 2020, we developed and released a training to all employees on unconscious bias in the workplace. In 2021, we are introducing a comprehensive ID&E curriculum to further enable our employees.
Our Early Career programs are critical to nurturing a diverse pipeline of talent. We have robust summer Internship, co-op and industrial placement programs and have established several flagship programs such as: Vertex Fellows, Physician Investigators, PharmD Fellowship and MBA Summer Associate program. We’re intentional about using these programs to provide equitable access to opportunities for communities that have been traditionally underrepresented in biotech.
We know we can’t do this work alone; we partner with organizations that allow us to drive equity across the entire educational and career journeys of students and young people in our communities.
Our efforts in inclusion, diversity and equity (ID&E) go beyond the workplace. In 2020, Vertex and the Vertex Foundation committed $4 million over three years to fight racism and injustice around the world. This commitment includes:
- $1.5 million commitment from the Vertex Foundation to help establish the Boston University Center for Antiracist Research. The Center will study and develop new ways to understand, explain and solve seemingly intractable problems of racial inequity and injustice.
- The Vertex Foundation was one of the first funders of the New Commonwealth Racial Equity and Social Justice Fund, a groundbreaking fund created by Black and Brown corporate executives in Massachusetts to eliminate systemic racism throughout the state.
- Vertex expanded support to long-time partners, including the Boston Private Industry Council, Bottom Line and the Biomedical Science Careers Program, while the Vertex Foundation increased its commitments to City Year and Equal Justice Works.
Vertex is proud to be recognized for our efforts in ID&E, including:
- Perfect Score on the Human Rights Campaign’s Corporate Equality Index in 2020 and 2021
- Forbes Best Employers for Diversity in 2019 and 2020
- Boston Business Journal 2020 LGBT Corporate Ally Award
- Women Engineer Magazine Top 50 Employers for Women Engineers
- STEM Workforce Diversity Magazine Top 50 Employers for Workforce Diversity
We have made progress and recognize that achieving true excellence in ID&E takes a sustained push. We are committed to doing even more.