Facebook Stalls On Diversity, Only Hires 7 African Americans In Latest Count
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Amid demands by civil rights leaders and others for employers to improve foundering diversity on Silicon Valley, Facebook has been slow to build a workforce that mirrors its 1.4 billion users around the globe, according to the Guardian.
Despite repeated promises by Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chairman and chief executive, to build a less homogenous workforce, the company’s diversity report released on Thursday reveals that more than half of its workers in the U.S. are White, with the proportion falling slightly from 57 percent to 55 percent, writes the news outlet.
The proportion of Asian employees increased by 2 percent to 36 percent, but the numbers of Hispanics and Blacks or those of “two or more races” remained flat at 4 percent, 2 percent and 3 percent respectively, the report says.
Facebook’s senior leadership is even more homogenous, with 73% of the most important positions filled by white people.
The company did not provide a breakdown of the exact numbers of people of different ethnicities in different ranks at the firm. It is required to do so by US law, but a spokeswoman said there is a lag in filling the Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) report.
The most recent EEO filing available shows Facebook hired an additional seven black people out of an overall headcount increase of 1,231 in 2013. At that time Facebook employed just 45 black staff out of a total US workforce of 4,263. Facebook’s black female headcount increased by just one person over 2013 to 11, and the number of black men increased by six to 34. There were no black people in any executive or senior management positions.
Over the same period the number of White Facebook employees rose by 695 people, the report says, and about 125 Whites hold executive and senior management positions at the firm.
The company has also made little to no strides to increase the number of female employees. Sixty-eight percent of its global employees are male, a 1 percent drop from the previous year. Also in 2013, men represented 84 percent of its core technology workers, down from 85 percent in 2012, the report says.
A Facebook spokeswoman for the company was unable to say when it would file its 2014 EEO report.
After Silicon Valley executives faced heavy criticism last year over low diversity numbers, Google stepped up to answer the call with an ambitious $150 million plan to attract women and people of color. We hope that Facebook will take similar measures to improve its diversity statistics.