“Google is not where we want to be when it comes to diversity.”
Despite much more diverse customer bases, Google is still dominated by white men. Diversity Report that Laszlo Bock, the senior vice president of people operations at Google, released on May 28 suggests that women constitute only 30% of employees, 21% of executives, and 17% of technicians. The search company’s US workforce also comprises of 61% white people, with Asian staff 30%, Hispanic people 3%, and black staff just 2% of employees.
When narrowed by job type, Google’s gender gap is more extreme, with only 21% of leadership positions held by women. Among the company’s 12 CEOs, Susan Wojcicki of YouTube is the only female CEO. Meanwhile, by ethnicity, leadership positions are held by 71% white, Asian 23%, black 2%, and others 3.5%.
The lack of diversity is particularly evident in the departments that are specifically focused on technology, with just 17% of employees being women. In non-tech departments, 48% of employees are women, while, by ethnicity, the workforce is made up of 61% white, 34% Asian, 3% mixed-race individuals, 2% Hispanic people, and black staff and others 1%.
Google explained “Recruiting qualified women and ethnic minorities is difficult because they barely earn computer science degrees. Nevertheless, to help increase the number of women who represent half the global population in the technology sector, we have donated over $40 million since 2010. And the Diversity Report is part of our ongoing effort to diversify our workforce.”
Google’s act of unveiling its data to the public which is not an obligation according to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is to be commended because it reflects its readiness to discuss diversity issues in an open dialogue. On June 2, the Silicon Valley Business Journal commented “Some tech companies already followed Google and disclosed gender and ethnicity gap. More companies are expected to make such data public, too, creating bigger ripple effects than Google expected.”
Though Google is not alone in its efforts to enhance gender and ethnic diversity in the technology sector, Facebook, Apple Inc., Twitter, Hewlett-Packard Co., and Microsoft Corp. did not respond immediately to queries about possible plans to disclose diversity data.