Silicon Valley has a turtle-paced path to progress when it comes to diversity and inclusion. Earlier this year, allegations concerning Uber's sexist workplace practices flooded the internet, prompting more stories of sexual abuse to surface. Such stories unravel something toxic about Silicon Valley — it's always been that way for many, but brave voices are making it public.
Women working in Silicon Valley often report sexual misconduct, power playing, and disgusting gender bias in the workplace. It's a tumor still at large, plaguing the industry in ways that have put women and other minorities in the outskirts of fairness and appropriate conduct.
Apple Still Mostly Run By White Men
It comes as no surprise that some of the world's biggest tech firms are all scrambling to ramp up their diversity efforts. Google is. Microsoft is. Apple most certainly is. In fact, the Cupertino brand has just released its latest diversity report, showing notable progress yet proving it still has a lot of work to do.
It's the first diversity report since Denise Young Smith, Apple's new VP of diversity and inclusion, joined the company in May. Here are the most important numbers:
• In the United States, white employees now only make up 54 percent of Apple's total workplace, down two points from last year.
• Black employees make up nine percent — no change from last year.
• Asian employees make up 21 percent — two points higher than last year.
• Multiracial employees make up three percent, and "Other" make up one percent.
That means nearly half of Apple's U.S. workforce is non-white.
Apple Workforce Diversity Breakdown
From July 2016 to July 2017, Apple says half of its new employees in the United States were from historically underrepresented groups in the tech industry, including women, Hispanics, Native Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Other Pacific Islanders.
The numbers above, while promising, only represent Apple's total workforce. Looking at its total leadership make-up paints a highly different picture.
Apple's leadership remains mostly white and male. Some 81 percent of its senior officials are men and 82 percent of them are white, as per a 2016 government filing Apple published Thursday, Nov. 9.
Of all 107 employees holding leadership roles inside the company, 10 are Asian men, four are Asian women, two are black men, one is a black woman, and two are Hispanic men.
In terms of gender, women make up 33 percent of Apple's total workforce, and 23 percent of its total technical staffers.
Diversity at the executive or leadership level is a bit of a sensitive topic. Apple shareholder Tony Maldonado has called on Apple many times to implement an "accelerated recruitment policy" as a way to speed up diversity at the senior management level. But the company's board has time and time again shot it down, arguing it doesn't need that kind of policy because it has already "demonstrated our commitment to a holistic view of inclusion and diversity" and made detailed information about it.
Change, of course, doesn't happen overnight. With over 130,000 employees around the world and high retention rates, diversity is likely to be a slow process for the company.
Apple's diversity report is available in its website.