Social We will cultivate an inclusive, respectful work environment that values differing perspectives and encourages the power of teamwork and accountability.
In November 2018, Equitrans Midstream Corporation was launched as one of the largest natural gas gatherers and transmission pipeline operators in the United States – and “E-Train” left the station to begin its journey as a powerful, standalone midstream company.
Today, we continue building on that momentum as we consistently strive to create, enhance, and maintain a strong, diverse, forward-thinking culture. More than being an employer of choice, at Equitrans Midstream, we value each employee for their individual contributions, as it is only when we work together that we will achieve greater success for our Company.
Our Vision, Mission, and Core Values are the foundational footprint for our beliefs and act as the framework to shape our culture, which is the guiding point for Company decisions and behaviors. As the roadmap for our future, our Vision and Mission help us to stay aligned internally and lead the course of our business; while externally, they are paramount in delivering our E-Train brand to the public. Our Core Values are a statement of our culture and support our Vision and Mission – they are the essence of our “identity” and act as a charter for our employees’ conduct, as well as the relationships we have with our customers, communities, vendors, and shareholders.
Our ability to create sustainable value for all stakeholders is driven from the inside out – and begins with our employees. We believe that our workforce is the most critical factor in achieving both our business objectives and our sustainability goals. By supporting employee development, we are empowering them to be more sustainable in their individual careers, while at the same time contributing to the overall viability of our workforce – which supports the sustainability of our business. While we know this is an area of continuous improvement, we are proud of our accomplishments during our two years since becoming a standalone company.
Expanding on our existing cultural aspects of diversity & inclusion, in mid-2020, we formally launched our Inclusion Program, which is rooted in Equitrans’ core value of collaboration – being a reliable partner inside and out. We recognize that creating a sense of belonging is critical to maintaining a positive, engaging culture – and contributes to greater innovation by allowing employees to feel comfortable and safe in providing feedback and suggestions. In addition, an inclusive culture is imperative to attract and retain top talent, which is critical when competing in a tight job market. E-Train’s Inclusion Program is composed of four pillars:
- Accountability is our internal training efforts for employees and leaders; employee recognition and appreciation; and office accessibility and inclusiveness.
- External recruitment focuses on sourcing diverse candidates and networking with diverse organizations; attending diversity career fairs; and ensuring our job postings utilize inclusive, unbiased language.
- Internal outreach is the enhancement of internal networking and relationship building; access to employee assistance and support programs; and ensuring Company policies and facilities are inclusive.
- External partnership focuses on our vendors and suppliers to ensure we are partnering with diverse, minority-, women-, and veteran-owned organizations and businesses.
In 2020, we took several steps to engage employees and reinforce the importance of an inclusive work environment. We introduced Blue Ocean Brain, a micro-learning platform that provides inclusion-related content on a bi-weekly basis (92% of employees have viewed one or more videos); conducted manager inclusion training (67% participation in the initial session); surveyed interest in employee resource groups; and completed a companywide policy review to confirm our existing policies support diversity & inclusion. Externally, E-Train partnered with local organizations that serve as a catalyst for positive change in our region and offer networking and inclusion-related resources. Currently, 100% of our external job postings are distributed to regional and national diversity-focused networks; and 28% of our staff-augmentation vendors and 14% of our suppliers are women/minority/veteran-owned.
One or More Engagement Events
Culture Champions Group
In 2019, we formed our Culture Champions Group with the objective of soliciting employees’ suggestions for ways to enhance E-Train’s culture. Since that time, we initiated our first Culture Assessment survey, which had an 85% participation rate, and plan to conduct a follow-up survey in 2021. The results of our initial survey have been used to focus our actions in the areas of coordination and integration, strategic direction and intent, and empowerment – with the primary goal to provide employees with opportunities to feel more connected to each other, to leadership, and to the Company. During the past two years, the Culture Champions Group initiated “Lunch with Leaders” sessions to enable networking between employees and our leadership team; and later rolled out “Coffee Talks” and “Virtual Meet-Ups” – two new programs aimed at enhancing communication, coordination, integration, and relationship building. During 2020, roughly 72% of employees participated in one or more of these initiatives, all of which were conducted virtually.
We believe connectivity begins with transparent communications and, along with the smaller, informal sessions noted above, Equitrans routinely conducts formal, more comprehensive all-employee meetings. Led by our executive team, these meetings provide general business information; project and financial updates; and current status of our annual performance measures, to ensure greater alignment of the Company’s goals and objectives. Employees are encouraged to submit questions in advance of, or during, the meeting and we wrap-up each session with a live Q&A. Due to remote work protocols, our three all-employee meetings for 2020 were conducted virtually, with an average of 70% of our employees in attendance for each.
Creating an engaging workplace also goes beyond the “workplace,” and we recognize that employees welcome additional opportunities to interact with one another and make meaningful contributions to the communities where we work and live. In 2019, we formed our E-Train On-Track committee, composed of members from each of our primary operating locations to ensure that activities are meaningful for each region, and to encourage employees to explore their passions, business skills, and expertise. E-Train On-Track members organize and promote volunteerism and community service opportunities and coordinate employee social activities – with the intent to encourage employees to enrich the lives of others and grow as a team – all while demonstrating our core values.
In conjunction with E-Train’s community service initiatives, including corporate sponsorships and local giving, Equitrans has a “Paid Volunteer Time” program that provides employees with up to two business days of paid volunteer time per calendar year. Employees are encouraged to submit ideas for community service events that are specific to their region. Our goal is to operate as a socially responsible Company and contribute in a positive way to our local communities so that we are enriching the lives of others, as well as the lives of our employees. Since the program’s inception in January 2020, employees have logged 320 volunteer hours.
Employee recognition continues to be a top driver in providing an engaging workplace for employees. In early 2021, E-Train formally launched Spotlight as our formal employee recognition program. The program’s inception began with feedback provided to our Culture Champions Group – and was emphasized in the results of our Culture Assessment survey. In addition, employee recognition is supported by our Inclusion program under the pillar of Accountability, which encourages the power of teamwork. Employees can appreciate everyday efforts by sending eCards or recognize efforts and initiatives that surpass expectations by nominating colleagues for a Spotlight award. Little things can go a long way and our Spotlight program encourages employees to recognize and celebrate success!
Employee Development and Engagement
In keeping with our commitment to create an engaging workplace for our employees, the development of our leaders is essential to that aspect of our mission. In 2019 we created multiple programs that use our Core Values as the framework to help leaders learn to facilitate the execution of our strategy, navigate a changing environment, build alignment across their teams, and grow the capability of others. Since the inception of these programs, we’ve enhanced the leadership ability of over 150 leaders across our organization. Programs include:
- EMERGE is designed for individual contributors who have an interest in taking on a leadership role. The program is designed to provide the participants a better understanding of their “leadership style” and how they can use these traits to be effective in leading people.
- LEAD is our first-line supervisor/manager course that helps first-time supervisors master the skills they need to move from technical or functional experts to people leaders and to understand what is required to be a leader at Equitrans.
- BILD is designed for senior managers and directors and focuses on helping leaders at the next level learn the art of executing through others. At this level, education is focused through the lens of our strategic priorities.
Wellness and Total Rewards
The safety, health, and well-being of our employees is paramount – above all else. Along with our Zero Is Possible – Today platform, which reinforces the importance of returning home safely each and every day, Equitrans takes several measures to ensure a healthy, happy, harmonious workforce. We believe our employees are critical to the success of our business and we structure our total rewards and benefits offerings to attract and retain a talented and engaged workforce. A few of these benefits include:
- Comprehensive health insurance, including access to Health Savings Accounts, for all full-time employees and part-time employees working at least 20 hours per week
- Take Charge Wellness – a vendor-managed program through which we offer wellness information, education, and special programs, including health coaches, to employees and their family members on topics such as nutrition, fitness, safety, and disease prevention
- Annual flu immunizations
- Access to an Employee Assistance Program
- Tuition reimbursement through an Education Assistance Program
- Adoption assistance
- Paid time off for holidays, vacation, bereavement, jury duty, military, and volunteer time
- Paid short-term and long-term disability insurance, life insurance, and business travel insurance
- Medical spending accounts for eligible retirees
- Flexible work arrangements
- Competitive base salaries with an annual incentive plan and opportunities for long-term incentives
- Company retirement plan matches 50% of every dollar the employee contributes up to a maximum of 3% of base compensation, including overtime, pay in lieu of vacation, and annual incentive awards; and a retirement contribution equal to 6% of the employee’s salary and annual incentive award
Adapting to Change During the Pandemic
In connection with the COVID-19 pandemic, we have proactively undertaken a number of companywide measures intended to promote the safety of field and office-based employees and contractors. In early March 2020, we established an Infectious Disease Response Team to manage our pandemic response efforts; implemented a mandatory work-from-home protocol for a significant majority of the Company’s employees (currently scheduled through at least June 1, 2021); and instituted stringent pandemic-related working protocols, including mandatory face coverings, social distancing for field operations where feasible; and implemented self-declaration forms to further protect our workforce. Given the magnitude of our extended workforce, we also shared our Infectious Disease Response Plan with suppliers and contractors to ensure alignment of required working protocols across our operations.
Additional company-wide efforts included eliminating non-essential business travel; providing certain medical benefit enhancements; instituting enhanced self-protection measures; implementing strict office and fleet vehicle sanitation measures; and offering a list of preferred items for employees’ home office set-ups. In preparation for the future, post-pandemic, we conducted a Workplace Modernization Survey in June 2020, which had an outstanding 84% participation rate. The survey asked employees to rank their workplace preferences based on a set of three “workplace personas” (anchor, flex, and remote). The results of the survey have helped us to understand how and where our employees prefer to work, which is critical for the development of a long-term plan for Equitrans’ regional office locations.
Since implementing our many pandemic protocols, our E-Train employees have not missed a beat in continuing to safely operate our assets and our business. We have taken steps to ensure employees are actively engaged and informed by continually providing communication updates; producing a variety of video messages by our executive team; encouraging team-building events via our several technology platforms; and delivering COVID-19 care packages to employees’ homes. The Company’s Infectious Disease Response Team continues to monitor and assist in implementing mitigation efforts in respect to potential areas of risk for the Company and its stakeholders.
An engaging culture contributes to a sustainable future
Our ability to create sustainable value for all stakeholders starts with a welcoming, inclusive culture. The importance of employee well-being and satisfaction is central to our journey to be the premier midstream services company in North America – and our journey is just beginning. We want our employees and other stakeholders to know that we are more than hearing them; we are listening. Through candid feedback, we can develop meaningful, sustainable actions that will effectuate change, strengthen our corporate culture, and enhance the sustainable value we deliver.
Printable PDF file: Our Culture :: Creating Sustainable Value from the Inside Out