Women Leaders
Traci Wade, Oracle

Traci Wade

Celebrating Differences

Editors’ Note

As Oracle’s Senior Director of Diversity and Inclusion, Traci Wade leads global programs that build awareness on the business impact and value of a diverse and inclusive culture at Oracle. She engages with senior leadership in creating and supporting strategies that infuse and elevate a culture of inclusion and equity. During her career at Oracle, she has played a key role in establishing the company’s first diversity and inclusion team in 2009. Since then, Wade has become a strategic thought leader and subject matter expert on diversity and inclusion. She has received recognition and awards for her commitment and success in leading Diversity & Inclusion corporate efforts, which include: 2017 Top Diversity and Inclusion Executives in Corporate America by Black Enterprise Magazine, Bridging the Gap Award by 2015 by San Francisco African-American Chamber of Commerce, Corporate Champion of the Year in 2012 by Black Data Processing Associates, Rising Star at the Women of Color STEM Conference in 2013, and Outstanding Corporate Contributor by Black Data Processing Associates in 2013.

Company Brief

Oracle’s (oracle.com) mission is to help people see data in new ways, discover insights, and unlock endless possibilities. The Oracle Cloud offers a complete suite of integrated applications for sales, service, marketing, human resources, finance, supply chain and manufacturing, plus highly-automated and secure generation two infrastructure featuring the Oracle Autonomous Database.

Will you highlight Oracle’s commitment to diversity and inclusion?

At Oracle, we don’t just respect differences – we celebrate them. We believe that innovation starts with inclusion and to create the future we need people with diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and abilities. That’s why we’re committed to creating a workplace where all kinds of people can do their best work. We build a sense of community, develop future leaders and retain talent through our active engagement with our Employee Resource Groups which represent some of the diverse communities that make up who we are as a company. They connect us, empower us, and help us enact change. Currently, our Employee Resource Groups include: Alliance of Black Leaders for Excellence, Generation of Leaders Organization (encouraging collaboration across generations), Military and Veteran Employee Network, Oracle Latinos Alliance, Oracle Professional Asian Leadership, Oracle Pride Employee Network, and Oracle Abilities Network.

Oracle Women’s Leadership, an organizational leadership development program, aims to develop, engage, and empower current and future generations of Oracle women leaders to foster an inclusive and innovative workforce. With over 108 communities at local levels worldwide and over 200 volunteer and senior-level women serving as Community Leaders, Oracle women are supported in taking control of their personal and professional development by carving a meaningful career path.

Oracle Veteran Programs support the hiring, development and sense of community for our U.S. military veterans. Along with our Military and Veteran Employee Network, the Oracle Veteran Internship program provides integration and transition training to veterans injured during worldwide campaigns and training missions. The Oracle Veteran Guidon Program is our successful mentoring initiative to orient newly-hired military veterans and military spouses into the corporate environment as they transition to the Oracle culture.

Through our over 20 years of partnership with UNCF (United Negro College Fund), we provide in-kind scholarships and internships. Our broader internship program engages Black, Hispanic and Native American students across fields, from computer science to marketing. As part of the internship, we offer competitive salaries, roundtrip travel, corporate housing, and a $10K scholarship.

In addition, our ongoing investment in our many diversity and inclusion strategic partners all highlight our ongoing commitment to diversity and inclusion.

“At Oracle, diversity and inclusion is built
into the framework of how we think about
and engage in business.”

How critical is it that the diversity and inclusion function is integrated into business strategy?

Diversity and inclusion should never be a standalone program. At Oracle, diversity and inclusion is built into the framework of how we think about and engage in business.

Will you discuss the benefits of having diverse experiences and perspectives at the table when making business decisions?

It is imperative to recognize that leveraging different people – their varied backgrounds and experiences – assists with inspiring innovation. It is imperative to have a corporation that reflects our customers and partners.

How valuable is it in your role to have such a deep commitment and engagement from Oracle’s CEO and management team for its diversity and inclusion work?

D&I leaders direct engagement with executive leadership is important for inspiring thought leadership and change management. It signals to the corporation a true commitment to diversity and inclusion.

How critical are metrics to be able to track the impact of Oracle’s diversity and inclusion efforts?

Setting metrics to be able to analyze progress assists with moving the needle forward in diversity and inclusion.

Do you feel that there are strong opportunities for women to grow and lead in the industry?

Women and minorities in leadership roles are increasingly sought after in the tech industry. McKinsey data has shown that women and ethnic minorities in leadership roles increase profits. Different perspectives in the tech industry inspires innovation and leads to the next generation of solutions and technologies.

What advice do you offer to young people interested in building a career in the industry?

Take advantage of internship opportunities in the tech industry. Leverage your internship to gain professional expertise, engage with leaders and individual contributors, learn about all aspects of the industry, and build a network. Also, before you end your internship, identify a mentor who can assist with preparing you for the future workforce in the tech industry.