Friday 23 March 2018

Apple reports progress in workforce diversity

Apple CEO Tim Cook
Apple CEO Tim Cook

Deborah M. Todd

Apple on Wednesday reported improvements in gender and ethnic diversity in June as the US technology company stayed ahead of fellow Silicon Valley power houses Google and Facebook in hiring minorities.

Apple also said in its annual diversity and inclusion report that it had closed pay gaps over the last year by analyzing salaries, bonuses and annual stock grants. It had also opened up its annual stock grants program to retail employees for the first time.

As of June, Apple's overall US workforce was 56pc white (up 2pc from a year ago), 19pc Asian (down 1pc) 12pc Hispanic (up 1pc), and 9pc black (up 1pc).

Apple's workforce includes a pool of retail employees that Google and Facebook do not have. In Apple stores, blacks and Hispanics respectively comprised 12pc and 17pc of general employees, and 5pc and 10pc of the leadership.

At Alphabet Inc's Google unit, blacks and Hispanics respectively made up 2 and 3pc of the overall workforce and 1 and 3pc of its tech employees, little changed from last year.

At Facebook, blacks and Hispanics were respectively 2 and 4pc of the workforce and 1 and 3pc of tech employees.

Apple's global workforce was 32pc women, up 1pc from the end of June 2015. Women held 23pc of technical positions, up 1pc from a year ago, and 28pc of leadership positions, unchanged from June last year.

Reverend Jesse Jackson, who confronted Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook in 2014 about the company's lack of diversity and unfair compensation, applauded its efforts to connect with engineers of color through partnerships with historically black colleges and universities and scholarship organizations.

"They are clearly setting the pace, making measurable progress for three consecutive years. They've acted with intention, not just aspiration," Jackson said in a statement.

Amazon Inc, which employs a large number of workers at distribution centers, reported late last year that its ethnic diversity exceeded the U.S. average, with a global workforce that was 21pc black, 13pc Hispanic, 11pc Asian and 5pc other ethnicities.

In management positions at Amazon, however, representation dropped to 4pc for blacks and Hispanics, 3pc for other races, and climbed to 20pc for Asians.


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