Diversity and Inclusion

Our success is dependent upon our greatest resource – our employees. To continue our success, we must nurture creativity, entrepreneurial thinking and diverse thought – none of which are attainable without fostering an inclusive workplace.

We are committed to proactively and consciously embracing diversity by recognizing and appreciating the characteristics that make individuals unique. We strive to foster a culture of inclusion and an environment where everyone connected with our company feels valued.

Throughout 2016, diversity and inclusion remained a top priority, as evident in our recruiting and programming efforts. We held diversity and inclusion meetings at six universities and technical schools, and we have integrated a diversity and inclusion workshop into our intern and trainee programs. To strengthen our field integration, we completed “D&I Field Forums” in partnership with our Compliance and Ethics team.

We continue providing professional development and skill-building opportunities for all employees through various programs. To increase paths to employee involvement and development, we paired 30 employees with managers, directors and officers throughout the company during a mentorship pilot program co-sponsored by Diversity and Inclusion and the ONEOK Women’s Resource Group.

More than 20 diversity and inclusion-related events in 2016 were sponsored by ONEOK, including such events as Tulsa’s annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day parade, the Oklahomans for Equality’s Equality Gala, Executive Women International’s Executive Night, the Hispanic American Foundation’s Noche de Gala, the Return on Inclusion Summit and Oklahoma’s Largest D&I Summit.

We continue to seek to recognize employees who are military veterans, and this year, employees in various locations donated to Diversity and Inclusion’s drive for care packages sent to employees’ family members currently serving in the military.

ONEOK maintained its score of 85 out of 100 in the 2017 Human Rights Commission’s annual report Corporate Equality Index, which assesses inclusion in major companies and law firms across the country. the Tulsa Regional Chamber’s Diversity Business Council recognized us again as a five-star Top Inclusive Workplace.
Diversity and Inclusion Council Members

In 2016, the ONEOK Diversity and Inclusion Council added additional members to better accommodate the company’s growing emphasis on diversity and inclusion.

The council, composed of employees, serves in an advisory role to help ONEOK successfully develop and meet diversity and inclusion strategies, goals and objectives. Together with the Diversity and Inclusion Program team, the council develops, recommends and monitors diversity and inclusion methods, advocates for inclusive practices and provides insight into how diversity and inclusion can improve ONEOK’s organizational performance and drive improved overall business results.

Diversity and Inclusion Council Executive Committee

Terry Spencer (Chair)
President and CEO
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Hayley Rose (Vice-Chair)
Vice President, Commercial,
Natural Gas Pipelines
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Roger Thorpe (Vice-Chair Elect)
Vice President, Natural Gas Operations
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Rob Martinovich
Executive Vice President and
Chief Administrative Officer
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Steve Lake
Senior Vice President and General Counsel
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Angela Wells (Liaison)
Vice President, Human Resources
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Julie Helwege-Eberts (Liaison)
Director, Talent Acquisition
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Justice Waidner Smith
Program Manager, Diversity and Inclusion
Tulsa, Oklahoma

ONEOK Diversity and Inclusion Council

Denise Adams
Director, Rates and Regulatory Compliance
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Ariele Brownfield
Operations Engineer
Mont Belvieu, Texas

Daniel Chargois
Operations Engineer
Sidney, Montana

Victor Dufour
Manager, Reliability
Channahon, Illinois

Valencia Gilkey
Operations Engineer
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Paul Jackson
Supervisor, Measurement Data
and Processing
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Nadia Kyrylova
Environmental Specialist
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Henry Nguyen
Account Director, Accounting
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Ronnie Ornelas
Supervisor, Pipeline Operations
Midland, Texas

Jon Sauer
Director, Pipeline Operations
Windom, Kansas

Jackie Sommer
Director, Marketing Services
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Joe Steffens
Director, Pipeline Operations
Medford, Oklahoma

Megan Washbourne
Director, Communications
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Ramon Watkins
Managing Attorney
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Brady Wheeler
Manager, Processing Operations
Calumet, Oklahoma

Jeff Zumwalt
Business Partner, Human Resources
Tulsa, Oklahoma

Talent Acquisition

ONEOK’s long-term sustainability is tied to its commitment to attract, develop and retain a diverse group of talented employees. Our approximately 2,400 employees continue to be the driving force behind its success, and it takes a collaborative effort by many workgroups within our organization to design and execute a strategy that supports our hiring and retention goals.

In 2016, ONEOK hired 198 new employees, not including 20 graduates from its university recruiting program, and its employee turnover rate decreased to 7.4 percent compared with 8.1 percent in 2015.

A primary responsibility of our Talent Acquisition team is to cultivate positive relationships throughout our asset footprint and to aid in attracting diverse, qualified candidates who share our core values and have a passion for the industry and communities we serve. There are a variety of ways in which we introduce ourselves to candidates daily, including job postings, local and national networking, advertising, internet sourcing, social media engagement and career event participation.

The ONEOK Employee Referral Program (OERP) is a another valuable resource to ONEOK in recruiting talent. Current employees know ONEOK and their roles and responsibilities best, and they often refer highly qualified candidates who fit well with our culture. In 2016, the OERP was updated to make it easier for employees to share jobs with colleagues, friends and family and get credit for those referrals. Employee referrals accounted for 26 percent of our hires in 2016.

Good Benefits Attract and Retain the right Talent

ONEOK employees are the company’s greatest asset. Having an attractive benefits program provides great advantages to companies for attracting and retaining employees. The value associated with a comprehensive and competitive benefits package may be the winning factor when compared with peer companies.

According to a 2015 Unum Benefits Buyers study, 78 percent of workers – across four generation groups – base their acceptance or rejection of a job offer in part on the benefits package. For those employees already established in a company, nearly half say that they would stay with their employer because they are satisfied with their benefits.

It makes sense that good benefits packages can enhance employee loyalty and engagement. Companies that respond to the trends and needs of their employees will stay ahead of the curve.

Pursuing and maintaining employee happiness and loyalty extends to a more positive and productive company culture and sustainability.

Drake Collison, plant operator at Lonesome Creek natural gas processing plant.

University and Technical School Recruiting Programs

Our university recruiting program helps to facilitate hiring and retention by providing interns with meaningful exposure to a career in their field. Interns have the opportunity to be immersed in our culture, and those who accept full-time positions tend to be long-term fits for the organization.

In 2016, through our university recruiting program, ONEOK welcomed 20 graduates for full-time opportunities, of which 18 were previous interns, and 33 interns, of which six returned for a second internship.

While we recruit many interns and employees from colleges and universities with respected programs in our industry, hiring talent from technical schools is an equally important function of our recruiting strategy. From these schools, we are able to recruit people with specialized skills for technical internships.

In 2016, a cross-functional team was formed to review our technical school recruiting process and help develop a Technical School Program. This team, which includes 20 employees from our locations with the greatest hiring needs, helps to foster relationships with key technical schools.

University engagement

In 2016, our Talent Acquisition team, along with employees from workgroups for which ONEOK is hiring, participated in 26 university hiring events, where we met with approximately 3,000 students and conducted more than 200 interviews.

Improved Retention

In 2013, as a result of an internal initiative to review our hiring strategy, we reorganized part of our Human Resources department to add a Talent Acquisition team and created new recruiting positions focused on identifying our business’ hiring needs, sourcing qualified

candidates and streamlining selection and hiring processes. Our resulting strategy and implementation between 2014 and 2016 led to an initial jump in employment and a steady decline in hiring needs due to market changes and improved retention.

Open Positions – Positions Filled (2014-2016)

Organizational Development

Our Organizational Development team provides development, training and consulting services for all employees. Its focus is on improving employee capabilities, creating world-class leaders and introducing practices that focus on superior business results.

Development and training opportunities offered to employees include technical and safety trainings, leadership-style assessments, team analysis, performance feedback mechanisms and a library of educational resources that may accommodate the needs of all departments.

In 2016, 761 employees attended some form of classroom training through the department.

Self-training opportunities also are offered to employees interested in being proactive about their development in a self-paced structure.

2016 Highlights

Technical and Safety Trainings

  • More than 114,000 technical and safety trainings were delivered (both computer- based and in-person training)

Extended DISC

  • 227 employees received an Extended DISC

  • 13 team Extended DISC sessions were conducted

360 Feedback

  • 50 leaders participated in the 360 Feedback Process