When Angel Roth left the workplace 13 years ago, she took her skills in IT financial services with her. She approached parenting with the same calm outlook she had brought to the workplace: tackling large tasks by breaking them down into manageable pieces, checking each step off along the way and encouraging her children and husband to do the same.
As her kids edged toward their teens, she thought about bringing those skills back to the workplace. But like many people who’ve taken a career hiatus, she feared her skills were no longer relevant. “There was a lot of fear and self-doubt,” she admits. “I have this huge gap in my resume. I did fill that time with a lot of things, but how do you even put those experiences into a resume?”
In 2019, she found a new home for those skills at Mastercard, thanks to our Relaunch Your Career program, which encourages people like Angel – mid-level professionals who took a career break – to return to the workforce. The immersive, 16-week training program allows workers to simultaneously learn all about how Mastercard operates and take on a project immediately. She was surrounded by mentors, a “buddy” to support her from within the company, a manager who helped with her transition and various top executives.
Today, Angel applies her incredible organizational skills to keeping our IT teams operating efficiently. The diversity of her experiences helps us unlock new ideas that ultimately build a stronger company.
There are countless talented people, like Angel, who’ve spent time away from the workplace. One of our jobs, here at Mastercard, is to help eliminate the barriers that prevent them from seizing what’s possible. Since its debut in 2017, Relaunch Your Career has expanded to 19 locations, including India, Canada, Brazil, Russia, Kenya and the U.K.
That’s why we’re constantly rewriting our own playbook to ensure we’re supporting our people and building a globally dynamic, engaged and balanced team. We’re putting policies and programs in place that ensure people are empowered to reach their greatest potential.
Last week, we achieved an important milestone in pay equity with women at our company earning $1.00 to every $1.00 earned by men – equal pay for equal work.
We have a generous parental leave policy for both moms and dads and encourage all new parents to use that leave, so it’s a common and accepted practice.
We have formal and informal mentorship programs, and just this month, we kicked off a new program for junior-level women at Mastercard.
We also have an incredible 40 chapters of our Women’s Leadership Network – a group that create opportunities for female leaders to collaborate, network and grow.
It’s no surprise that Angel feels she benefited most from the support network that surrounded her when she walked through our doors. In addition to her formal mentors, she participated in a weekly discussion group with five fellow Relaunch Your Career participants. “It gave us the opportunity to get to know each other and talk about our feelings and experience,” she says. “It was amazing because I knew I wasn’t going through this journey alone.”
Nor will she be alone as her career progresses.
At Mastercard, women make up 39 percent of our global workforce and half of our new hires. We expect this to continue to grow through development programs such as Women Who Lead and policies that ensure diversity in our hiring, candidate slates and more. Driving toward gender balance is not only the right thing to do, it’s the right thing for our business.
For me, there’s no doubt: a world that works better for women creates limitless possibilities for us all.