Google Admits Lack of Diversity in Newly Released Report

For the first time, tech giant Google discloses its EEO-1 report, which proves that the company is primarily made up of white male employees.

By Julissa Catalan

Google-DiversityOn Wednesday, Google released data that confirmed the extreme employment disparity within the tech company, not only racially but between genders as well.

While the gender data is based on Google’s 46,170 worldwide employees, the ethnicity data only documents the U.S. workers.

The workforce demographics show that 70 percent of Google employees are male.

More shocking is that 62 percent of the company’s U.S. employees are white—even though it has 19 offices around country, in racially diverse cities such as New York, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., and Detroit.

The remainder of Google’s workforce breaks down as 30 percent Asian, 4 percent mixed race, 3 percent Latino, 2 percent Black and 1 percent “other.”

The job types are broken down into four categories: overall, tech, non-tech and leadership.

Men hold 83 percent of tech positions, while 79 percent in leadership roles are also male.

The only category that appears to have gender balance is non-tech jobs—which most likely include primarily administrative and clerical positions—with men making up 52 percent and women 48 percent.

As far as ethnicity is concerned, the numbers do not fluctuate much when it comes to a position type—whites remain in the 60 percent range (except for leadership jobs, in which they make up 72 percent), and Asians stand between 23 and 34 percent, while Latinos, Blacks and mixed race are in the single digits across the board.

For years now, Google has declined to participate in the DiversityInc Top 50 survey.

When comparing its workforce-representation data with the 2014 DiversityInc Top 50 companies, we can see why:

Google: 2% Black, 3% Latino, 30% Asian, 30% women

2014 Top 50: 11.9% Black, 9.8% Latino, 9.8% Asian, 46.2% women

Prior to releasing this 2014 EEO-1 report, Google has gone to great lengths to keep its data a secret.

In 2010, Mike Swift of the San Jose Mercury News attempted to get Silicon Valley’s largest companies to disclose their diversity figures. Google, Apple, Yahoo!, Oracle and Applied Materials refused to release their EEO-1 data, going so far as to obtain a court-ordered block.

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  • What a suprise? Now, lets see if minorities will apply for open positions and if they will get hired!

    • Luke Visconti

      I wouldn’t recommend it. Google has amazing power and wealth. Let them develop a track record first, then go work for them. If you’re a woman and/or Black or Latino, my advice would be to wait until you see action, because the wording of their statement was reprehensibly passive and weak. Take a look at the executives pictured on their management page. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

    • I worked in s/w for nearly 30 yr. and hired quite a few engineers in that time. We seldom got any minorities, especially blacks, applying for our positions and, when we did, we made offers to them all. They never accepted because we were kind of cheap and they had multiple offers from elsewhere. Tech is a meritocracy, if you’ve got it, they want it and few could care less what your ethnicity, gender, etc. are, so long as you can code and show up sober. One place where these companies do discriminate, however, is age and there the meritocracy model fails! Tell me how many s/w engineers, over 50, hell, over 40, are employed by Google and Facebook combined. Bet it’s very near to zero!

      • Luke Visconti

        Your logic is faulty. If it were a meritocracy, the demographics wouldn’t look the way they do. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

    • It’s the latest in a series of reports that have signaled a major, long-term shift in the demographics of the United States, as non-Hispanic white Americans are expected to become a minority group over the next three decades. For years, Americans of Asian, black and Hispanic descent have stood poised to topple the demographic hegemony historically held by whites.

      “More so than ever, we need to recognize the importance of young minorities for the growth and vitality of our labor force and economy,” said William H. Frey, a demographer at the Brookings Institution who analyzed the census data

      Census: White majority in U.S. gone by 2043
      Ill break it to Google gently, If all minority groups some how formed an alliance of recognition to confront this all-to-familiar-all-white-mentality; and some how boycott Google and all the other companies, the like of the Koch brothers and the extreme GOP tea party that has historically held a very negative view of minorities and many others that only cater to whites; Google would not only be in hot water ;but it would take a devastating economic blow.
      Minorities are a force to be reckon with, keep pissing them off and you might be heading to bankruptcy court soon

  • Rather than assuming Google’s lack of diversity is purposeful, I would like to see the diversity of qualified applicants who actually apply for jobs at Google. I think that should be a requirement of company hiring practices from now on, a way of comparison that would actually do some good rather than an assumption of guilt without any evidence of biased hiring practices. Then if it is shown that the discrepancy comes the percentages of qualified applicants, Google should sponsor education programs in its area that help women and underrepresented minorities qualify for the positions that it needs to fill. Only if it can be shown that the percentages of diversity among qualified applicants do not match percentages of Google’s workforce should any adverse regulatory action be considered against Google.

    • Luke Visconti

      Google’s lack of diversity is absolutely purposeful. You can tell this by looking at our DiversityInc Top 50 list— there are very few Black and Latino CPAs, yet EY and PwC are in the Top 10. Kaiser Permanente has the most diverse senior management and board of directors we’ve ever measured—that’s purposeful as well. If I am driving up I-95 and close my eyes and mash down on the accelerator, the resulting collision would be considered purposeful as well. And any charitable work they do should be tied to results they want to see because the goal of any diversity-recruitment program is to hire the very best—and to do that, you must be inclusive of every “group” that’s out there. If there are fewer applicants who are women, for example, it’s simply good business to spend the time to lure the most qualified women to apply. If you look at Google’s leadership team, you’ll see it’s almost entirely male (just one woman) and all white or Asian Indian as well. Those were all purposeful promotions and hires, every one. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

      • I respectfully disagree that if a company has underrepresented minorities, because those minorities may not have applied for the jobs to begin with, that it means that they purposefully tried to not be diverse. Also, by releasing their numbers on diversity, probably means that Google management is trying to change or improve that diversity. They didn’t have to release the numbers did they? So if a company is trying to make progress in improving diversity by being open and honest about their current lack of diversity, perhaps should that should be applauded, instead of being cast in such a negative light. Its attacks on Google, like these on the outset, that will make all the other companies mentioned in this article not want to bother with an attempt to increase their own diversity.

        • Luke Visconti

          I do not agree. Releasing numbers after considerable bad publicity without a corresponding action plan is childish. Google wouldn’t speak this way at a quarterly report to Wall Street—if it did, its stock would plummet.

          I’ve helped almost 10 dozen companies turn things around—it’s what I do for a living. Google is not behaving like a company ready to make changes. When you come from a position of deficit, a clear-cut plan of action with objectives, actions and milestones is how you move forward. Puking up a bunch of numbers, then lying prostrate, tells me that Google management still does not believe that diversity is a business imperative. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

          • Thank you for all you do, Luke. Diversity is something that a corporation can fear or embrace. I am fortunate to work for a company that embraces diversity (CVS) and it is evident in their day-to-day operations, especially on the PBM side where I work. Diversity must be embraced and celebrated for healthy growth and understanding the customer base.

          • Luke,

            This in part is a response to this message and in part a response to the message further down since I seem to be “blocked” from responding down there. Perhaps you didn’t think I would respond civilly or something like that?

            How do you know what Google is behaving like? How do you know what kinds of hours their Human Resources dedicate to trying to build diversity? The answer is you don’t. A better question is what kind of sense would it make for Google not to be as diverse as possible, seeing the enormous diversity of the population that it serves?

            Lets break down the diversity issue a little more. You really do the issue a disservice first for clumping all “white” and all “Asian” people together as do most people do who continue to use the outmoded division of race. Those “white” people come from more than 30 different countries and speak more than 30 different languages. Those “Asian” include ethnicities from the Middle East, India, China, Southeast Asia, Japan and the Polynesian islands etc.

            I have not, nor will I ever probably be, employed by a PR firm. If you are not reading the same info I’m reading well would you like the URLs as a reference? They are a combination of University data collection using entrance and graduation statistics and a wide variety of methods to reduce the margin of error.

            Again I would like to point out the title of your website “Diversity” and ask why you always respond with such venom to those who present opinions facts that don’t agree with yours. Isn’t that attitude the antithesis of diversity?

          • I’m not sure why WordPress does not offer the response button to my comments.

            I have over 30 years board experience at two universities and one historically black college. I am also on HACU’s corporate and philanthropy board. I’ve never seen a Google employee or a Google scholarship the entire time. I googled to see if I was missing something. I don’t think I am.

            With estimated 2016 revenue of $84 billion and market capitalization of over $500 billion – 25 times the size of General Motors, Google turns to PR tricks to avoid embarrassment over under investment for education and to draw attention away from the negative press surrounding Silicon Valley and diversity. Good luck with that.

        • Kevin – I get where you’re coming from, but inaction is, in effect, and action. By NOT taking steps to increase recruitment of minority and female employees Google is deciding not to be diverse. A company that wants to be diverse will actively do something about it, not just sit back on its heels.

          Further, as a woman, I would hesitate to apply to Google given the huge gender imbalance and seeming lack of diversity and inclusion programs. Where I work now I feel values because my employer has an active inclusion program that not only has rank and file involvement, but all the senior executives are on board with the program. To me, that speaks volumes about how much the company values diversity and the lengths to which they will go to promote it. They aren’t paying lip service.

          • Jen,

            I actually did some research in the background of this problem more in-depth since my last posting. The problem is not in Google’s hiring practices but in STEM education. Google’s diversity actually matches, in Asians and women’s cases exceeds, the diversity of those who have actually graduated from STEM education programs in the last 20 years. I use as a source two studies, one done in 1996 and one done in 2012 and averaged them out, because it best represents the workforce between the ages of 25-50 as it exists today. Of STEM degrees awarded over the last 20 years: 71 percent of them were awarded to men/29 percent to women; 64.1 percent to Whites, 19.4 percent to Asians, 2.7 percent to Blacks, and 2.2 percent to Hispanics. Of course these statistics are on a national level, but in California, where Google is headquartered the disparity in STEM education is actually worse. So I guess I would have to end with the question since the statistics actually fairly closely match or exceed the actual qualified individuals what else can Google do?

            I think this goes back to fixing the educational system and not blaming the company for lack of diversity in its applicants, as I stated earlier.

          • That’s not what I’ve read. The truth is that Google, being one of the worlds most powerful brands and being more wealthy than just about any other company, can hire all the diversity it has the will to. Every DiversityInc Top 50 company over-index representatively for talent (among underrepresented groups) – not for political correctness, because underrepresented segments are where the untapped talent is.

            Google has never applied for the DiversityInc Top 50, which is a free process and all companies receive a free report card. What does Google not know that hundreds of companies do? Nothing. They know when to stay out of the competition – because they aren’t serious about diversity.

            Google could change the educational process all by itself, to it’s own benefit. But they have made the choice not to even try.

            I hope you get the two dollars from the PR firm who hired you.

  • Robert Darryl Hidalgo

    Admitting there is exclusion is the first step toward problem resolution. Google did not have this disparaging problem at its onset. The hiring discrimination is entirely managerial. Many supposed qualified employees are actually grunt working gophers doing puff work in art, yesteryear IT programming, and archival work that could be done by a retired secretary in her 90’s. Google developers are like cheap, in-house, leach app-designers. Basically, Google is still a search engine. Here is the height of racism: go to Google. Search for Mexican doctors. Displayed will be Mexican restaurants. Google’s gods are meta tags, and revenue that pays for great meta tags and prime meta space. The secretarial gods controlling the flow behind the meta tags of search prioritization are the infernal racists guilty for perpetuating racism at a pretty cool place to work. No doubt, the ethnicity and race of the founders played as key litmus test to future associates. The employees in these post-IT-world, administrative roles are the source of the cancer of racism at Google. I do not see a male avalanche of Black or of Hispanic workers happening in the near future, even if these opportunities were shoved into their faces or a gun put to their heads. I do see women of all ethnocentric races as a major potential work force at Google. There will be other Googles. What happened at AOL can happen to Google.

    • Martha Williams

      I agree that ‘What happened at AOL {can} will happen to Google. It’s just a matter of time.

  • The facts in this article regarding Google do not surprise me at all. As someone who has dealt with diversity in the workplace for quite some time I see Google’s sudden willingness to release its EEO1 report as an interesting tactical move.

    Think about it for a moment, in sharing its data they are allowing those with little knowledge on how the corporations play the diversity game to make all kinds of assumptions. Review the ethnic profile they provide you add up the percentages and you will arrive at 28% which most people will interpret as goodness on Google’s part. Many will assume that Google has a large diverse workforce, technically speaking they’re not wrong. There largest minority representation is Asians at 23%. As you said in an earlier comment that is purposeful not just of Google but the High-Tech industry overall.

    Historically speaking minority representation has been weighted towards Asians. It’s only been recently we’ve seen an influx of women and other minority groups. But as you point out if companies like Google want to improve their overall representation among other minority groups then they have to take purposeful action to expand its outreach to their other underrepresented groups.

    Also it’s important to understand the numbers presented in articles such as this. One key area to pay attention to is the professional category. This is the pool where management looks for its next set of project leaders, team leaders, and entry level and midlevel managers. If weighted toward one particular minority group advancement for other minorities becomes problematic.

    Purposeful action must start with the organization, such as Google, to have some clear policies around upward mobility and advancement for all ethnic groups it employs and not focus on just one group or gender.

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