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Sabine Schmittroth: New solutions can only be found with people whose potential, talents, perspectives and attitudes are diverse. Because the sum of all Is make up a diverse, innovative and open WE - that is diversity.
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Equal opportunities and gender diversity

Women are equally well-qualified in all employment-relevant aspects. Mixed-gender teams – especially in management – show outstanding performance and are indispensable for corporate success, also in view of internationalisation and demographic change.

For this reason, we at Commerzbank strive to reflect gender diversity in all functions and levels of the Bank. In the interests of equal opportunities, all career tracks, whether professional, project or management, should be open to all Commerzbank employees.

In 2010, the Bank launched a Group-wide project to promote women in management positions. The quota at the beginning was around 23 percent. By the end of 2021, we have achieved a Group-wide quota of 33.7 percent of women in management positions and have set ourselves a new ambitious target of 40 percent by the end of 2030.

In the Boston Consulting Group's 2021 Gender Diversity Index, we have now risen to fifth place out of 99 German companies. This is something we are proud of, and we are determined not to slacken our efforts in the area of gender equality.

Inclusion of people with disabilities

Inclusion breaks down mental barriers and creates organisational conditions for successful cooperation between people with and without disabilities. Inclusion is a central component of Commerzbank's diversity strategy.

Since 2016, Commerzbank has defined the inclusion of people with disabilities as a new field of action in Diversity Management. The goal is to reconsider the topic of inclusion. This includes developing communication concepts with the communications and the procurement departments as well as with the committees, optimising processes and bundling these activities under one roof. This resulted in the “Action Plan for Inclusion” based on the UN Disability Rights Convention of 2009. With the action plan, Commerzbank is the first bank in Germany to commit to implementing key goals and measures by 2023 to improve the situation of people with disabilities at Commerzbank. This includes all employees as well as customers of the Bank.

Cultural diversity

Commerzbank is an internationally active bank and is represented at many locations worldwide. Commerzbank AG in Germany employs (at the end of 2021) 1,137 non-German employees from a total of 89 nations. Worldwide, the Commerzbank Group employs people from 121 nations. The largest foreign locations are: Warsaw (m-Bank), Lódz, London, Prague, Singapore, New York and Sofia.

We consider the diversity of our employees as an advantage and actively shape the way we work together. Teams with a broad range of linguistic and intercultural know-how exchange ideas, learn from one another and are thus predestined to think and work in international contexts. The cultural diversity of our employees is therefore invaluable for the success of the Bank. We draw strength from our own cultural identity. Origin, language, traditions and values give us support and orientation and determine the way we think and act.

Our goal is to make the best possible use of the different perspectives and backgrounds of our employees in order to create innovations from ideas and to be able to act assuredly and successfully in cross-border cooperation. The prerequisite for this is the competent and conscious manner in which the diversity in languages, cultures, values and working and communication styles is handled. To tap into this potential, we need the will to learn from each other and respect one another.

In 2013, the intercultural employee network Cross Culture was founded with the aim of promoting the understanding of other cultures.

Religion, belief and ideology

In diversity management, religious and ethnic diversity are also among the distinguishing characteristics that we want to acknowledge and benefit from amongst our employees. Belonging to a religion, a faith or a specific ideology should lead neither to preferential treatment nor to disadvantages for our employees in their working lives.

Within the scope of its possibilities in the operational environment, Commerzbank allows the personal implementation of religious rules and customs. The guiding principle is to treat one another with respect and in a spirit of partnership, irrespective of religion, belief or ideology, and not to violate others’ feelings and rights.

As a sign of appreciation, the Bank publishes the “Diversity Calendar” of the “Charta-der-Vielfalt e.V” on its intranet. The calendar gives an overview of all holidays celebrated by the major world religions.

In 2018, the Christian network "Ichthys" was founded as a network of employees with the same religious affiliation. The members of the network are committed to good cooperation in the Bank on the basis of their religious beliefs.

Sexual orientation and identity

Welcome as you are!

Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer (in short LGBT*IQ) or straight - at Commerzbank, all people are welcome just as they are, and all experience respect and appreciation regardless their sexual orientation and gender identity.

Openness and team spirit – that's what matters to us!

We are proud of our long-standing active commitment to LGBT*IQ diversity. This is because Commerzbank has been committed to an open approach to sexual orientation and identity for over 20 years. In 2010, Commerzbank was awarded the Max Spohr Prize for our commitment to LGBT*IQ diversity, a prize awarded by the Völklinger Kreis e.V. since 2001 to companies in Germany for their efforts in the context of LGBT*IQ diversity.

Commerzbank also takes a clear stance in public and underlines this with the visualised self-perception “We live 365 days of diversity”. For example, during Pride Season, the Commerzbank tower and the Bank's logo are regularly immersed in rainbow colours on all digital channels and applications. The rainbow flag stands for respect and promotion of diversity and the freedom of all forms of coexistence in our society and for how we treat each other – with mutual understanding and respect, without discrimination and exclusion.

Commerzbank – Co-founder of the PROUT AT WORK Foundation

In 2013, Commerzbank joined forces with other companies to found the PROUT AT WORK Foundation, which is now a leading think tank and advisor on LGBT*IQ issues in the workplace. This foundation is committed to equal opportunities for people of all sexual orientations and gender expressions and identities across corporate boundaries throughout Germany.

Today, we work closely together to break down unconscious prejudices and reduce fear of contact in society and to further enshrine the self-perception of our diverse society in the culture of Commerzbank.

Our driving force – the LGBT*IQ Network ARCO

The driving force behind our work is ARCO, our LGBT*IQ employee network, which has been actively campaigning for a visible and tangible normality of LGBT*IQ diversity in the workplace and beyond since 2002 with more than 450 active members.

Our common goal: to overcome prejudices & promote mutual acceptance at all levels.

We accomplish this together by means of awareness formats and, for instance, exciting exhibitions, but above all by communicating about queer people. External impulses are regularly taken up and panel guests are also invited from other companies and sectors for exchange formats, such as a panel at which persons close to queer people were given concrete call-to-actions in order to support those affected in the best possible way during their coming out. Another example is ARCO's “Ladies Lunch” initiative, which promotes the visibility of women in queer networks and whose work has sparked a nationwide movement outside the Bank. In 2022, ARCO was nominated for the German Business Communication Award in the special category FLINTA (Empowerment Communication) for this initiative. The award is presented annually to the most impressive communication measures and advertising concepts. However, our ARCO spokesperson already received special recognition from the PROUT PERFORMER jury in 2021 and was awarded first place for her commitment to the topic of lesbian visibility. With the publication of the so-called PROUT PERFROMER lists, the PROUT AT WORK foundation recognises personalities from the business world and public life who stand up for the concerns of queer people and act as role models. ARCO members appear regularly on the lists and in this way promote more LGBT*IQ visibility.

ARCO is supported in the Bank by “Allies” – regardless of their own sexual orientation or identity. Since 2021, our Executive Allies have been a new addition to the Top Management team to support ARCO.

Reconciliation of professional and private life

Family and career

The basis of our diversity strategy is trust and appreciation. The focus is on people with their different perspectives and talents.

At Commerzbank, we promote a working environment in which the compatibility of private and professional life is a matter of course. As such, we support our employees with a wide range of offers on family and career, as well as care and career.

For more than three decades, we have been continuously expanding our activities pertaining to work and family. Today, we offer targeted services for every situation. We support parents – both mothers and fathers – with flexible, company childcare facilities. Not only in exceptional cases, but also for regular childcare and holiday care.

Since the coronavirus pandemic, parents employed at Commerzbank have been able to use the virtual childcare service for their children. Here, parents can choose from various offers, from storytelling to age-specific group offers to 1-to-1 supervision, for example to help with homework.

Our employees can use different working time models and work locations in order to be able to reconcile private life and work as best as possible. For those returning from parental leave, we offer the “Keep in touch” programme with part-time options of 10, 20 and 30 percent, as well as a return guarantee to the previous position after parental leave.

We also support parents with allowances for childcare costs, and offer exchange formats, lectures and webinars on parenthood and children.

Investing in a pro-family HR policy, in our mothers and fathers and consider their family skills is an added value as well as a success factor for our company. With a modern family-friendly HR policy, Commerzbank would like to contribute towards allowing all parents more leeway for their professional ambitions

The Commerzbank fathers' network FokusVäter is available to all fathers in the Bank for the exchange of thoughts and ideas – both inside and outside the Bank – and for activities relating to fatherhood. Our fatherhood study shows that fathers want to live their role as a father in such a way that they can participate in and help to shape the development of their children. In this important phase of their lives, they strive for a sustainable balance between family and work. However, they also want to raise awareness for the potential of company-relevant competencies that develops through active fatherhood and are committed to a greater awareness of their fundamental position inside and outside the Bank.

Provision of long-term care and work

We set great store by supporting colleagues who provide long-term care for family members.

Commerzbank would like to support employees with relatives in need of care and create a more supportive environment for these employees with care responsibilities, as well as to make it easier to reconcile long-term care and work.

For example, there is the option of taking long-term care leave/family care leave with additional benefits that go beyond the statutory requirements, as well as immediate leave of absence for 5 additional days in the event of a care emergency. The Bank also continues contributions to the BVV pension institution during long-term care leave.

Through the long-standing cooperation with pme Familienservice, our employees can access information free of charge via an online portal and personal advice/mediation on the topic of long-term care. A homecare hotline is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, free of charge. For example, an SOS caregiver can be requested via this hotline.

Support in the form of allowances is available if long-term care training courses offered by health insurance companies and private providers are attended.

In addition, regular events on the topic of long-term care are available to colleagues, including an extensive range of events offered by Agaplesion and pme Familienservice. A long-term care network is offered, which allows the exchange of thoughts and ideas with colleagues. (Provision of long-term care – the Bank’s support offers (commerzbank.de).

In particularly strenuous situations, employees and their relatives living in the same household can make use of the support provided by an EAP hotline (“Employee Assistance Programme”).

Values of Commerzbank

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