Apr 4, 2019

Google diversity report shows small gains in retention

Photo: Joan Cros/NurPhoto/Getty Images

Amid a backdrop of employee activism, Google has released its annual diversity report. The report shows small improvements in both overall numbers as well as in attrition among certain underrepresented groups.

This is the second year that Google has included the attrition figures as part of its annual diversity report.

Details:

  • Google saw a significant improvement in retention of African-American and Latinx women, though overall African-American and Latinx attrition is higher than among other ethnic groups. Native American employees are also seeing high attrition and little to no progress in overall numbers.
  • Representation of women globally increased by 0.7 percentage points year over year.
  • In the U.S., African-American representation increased by 0.3 percentage points, Latinx by 0.4 percentage points and Asian representation was up 1.7 percentage points.

Yes, but: Google's report comes in the midst of growing complaints from employees over issues ranging from contract worker policies to the company's involvement with military projects and approach to AI ethics. Google also recently faced criticism over its refusal to remove an app that LGBT activists say amounts to conversion therapy (though it eventually did).

The big picture: Tech companies have boosted their efforts to diversify their workforces, but advocates have emphasized that the true measure of those efforts is whether employees from underrepresented groups stay after they've been hired.

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