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Google releases employee attrition rates for the first time

Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

As part of its annual employee diversity report, which showed little change in numbers from the previous year, Google for the first time included employee attrition rates for various demographic groups.

  • Attrition rates are highest for black employees, followed by Latino employees, and lowest for Asian employees. Women have lower attrition than men, both overall and in tech jobs.

Why it matters: Since major Silicon Valley companies began releasing employee demographics reports, diversity advocates have been critical of the lack of retention and attrition data. That information can show whether a company is succeeding at making employees feel included after they're hired.

Overlap: In addition to attrition rates, Google also for the first time included data about the intersection of gender and race for U.S. employees.

  • For example, while 38.2% of employees identify as Asian (or Asian and another race), only 12.5% of employees identify as Asian women.
  • Experts say that looking at the intersection of gender and race (and other demographic groups) can show how various biases (and lack of peers) can affect an employee at once.

Situation unchanged: It's also notable that despite spending millions of dollars on the issue and committing to improvement, Google's diversity reports continue to show little change year over year.

  • Companies have argued that change will take time, and point to the demographic makeup of their new hires. But sooner or later "no change" becomes hard to defend.

Go deeper: Google's diversity efforts fall flat.

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