Apple reports improving racial and gender diversity among employees

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Black and Hispanic workers form 9% and 12% of the workforce respectively, up slightly from last year, with overall figures better than Google and Facebook

Apple claims to have improved its gender and ethnic diversity as the US technology company stayed ahead of fellow Silicon Valley powerhouses Google and Facebook Inc 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, and had opened up its annual stock grants program to retail employees for the first time.

As of June, Apples overall US workforce was 56% white (up two percentage points from a year ago), 19% Asian (down one point) 12% Hispanic (up one point), and 9% black (up one point).

Apples workforce includes a pool of retail employees that Google and Facebook do not have. In Apple stores, black and Hispanic people respectively comprised 12% and 17% of general employees, and 5% and 10% of the leadership.

At Alphabet Incs Google unit, black and Hispanic people respectively made up 2 and 3% of the overall workforce and 1 and 3% of its tech employees, little changed from last year.

At Facebook, black and Hispanic employees were respectively 2 and 4% of the workforce and 1 and 3% of tech employees.

Apples global workforce was 32% women, up one point from the end of June 2015. Women held 23% of technical positions, up one point from a year ago, and 28% of leadership positions, unchanged from June last year.

The Rev Jesse Jackson, who confronted the Apple chief executive, Tim Cook, in 2014 about the companys 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. Theyve acted with intention, not just aspiration, Jackson said in a statement.

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

In management positions at Amazon, however, representation dropped to 4% for black and Hispanic workers, 3% for other races, and climbed to 20% for Asian workers.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/aug/03/apple-diversity-report-race-gender-facebook-google