BCD Travel creates Women of Distinction award to honor International Women’s Day

Previously Forbes and FlexJobs recognized BCD for gender equity and work-life balance

Utrecht, the Netherlands, March 6, 2019 – Leading travel management company BCD Travel awarded Kathy Jackson, Executive Vice President, Global Program Client Management & Advito, as its first recipient of the BCD Travel Women of Distinction award. The award was presented at a leadership summit last week.

”With the award we want to celebrate extraordinary women in our organization,” says John Snyder, President and CEO, BCD Travel. ”We hope it will inspire people across the company by putting a spotlight on role models of achievement and innovation.”

Kathy Jackson has been with BCD for over 37 years. She started her career as a travel agent and quickly moved into leadership positions. In her present role, she is responsible for BCD’s global program client management team and BCD’s consulting group, Advito. She is also the driving force in building BCD’s global sustainability program.

Aside from the newly-created award, BCD Travel is active in supporting gender equity and equality; a central element in the UN Global Compact. BCD has joined the Compact and supports its Sustainable Development Goals (SDGS), where Gender Equality is #5 of 17.

In 2018, the company was named by Forbes to its list of America’s Best Employers for Women. The list is based on working conditions, diversity, parental leave policies and professional advancement opportunities. BCD was rated 73 of 300 companies, and is the only major travel management company to make the inaugural list.

Furthermore, the portal FlexJobs has just named BCD as one of 2019’s most flexible employers with a focus on work-life balance. BCD ranks 23rd on the list of 100 top companies with remote jobs. It’s the travel management company’s fifth year on the list.

Women make up 70% of BCD’s current global workforce. At the directors level and above, 50% are women. Due to the demographics of the company, there is a larger share of women heading for leadership roles. Recently BCD expanded its leadership training program, with the purpose of strengthening the mid-level management to ensure better strategy translation and implementation at all levels. As a result, 125 employees went through the program in 2018; an increase of 400% over the previous year.

Participation reflects the overall workforce — about 70% of management trainees are women. The best-qualified candidate always earns the promotion, but since most of the employees preparing for leadership are women, a majority of the best candidates for leadership positions in the future will likely be women.

”We hope that with our actions we achieve a better gender balance on an executive level”, says Christian Dahl, Senior Vice President, Talent Management and Global Human Resources at BCD. ”By increasing flexibility in our jobs, expanding our training programs and providing the culture that motivates women to move up the ranks, we hope to retain our current women employees and encourage even more to join us.”