Twitter’s Diversity Targets for 2016: Small Steps

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Like many companies in Silicon Valley and beyond, Twitter has publicly wrestled with increasing the diversity of its employees. Now the social-networking giant has set goals for its workforce demographics in 2016—but its desired increases for some groups are small.

Most notably, Twitter wants to increase the overall number of women on its staff by 1 percent, from 34 percent to 35 percent. If everything goes according to the company’s plan, the number of underrepresented minorities in its U.S. offices will also climb by 11 percent over the next year. The above chart shows Twitter’s gender breakdown; the one below shows its diversity by ethnicity (in the U.S.):

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Increasing women staffers seems like an achievable goal, considering how raising their number by 1 percent translates into 41 more employees. Speaking to The Los Angeles Times, Melinda Epler, founder of Change Catalyst, described some of Twitter’s diversity targets as “disappointing.”

According to a corporate blog posting, Twitter plans to diversify its ranks in much the same manner as other tech companies, including actively recruiting at colleges for underrepresented talent; adjusting its internal recruiting efforts; partnering with organizations dedicated to increasing diversity; and supporting efforts to introduce more women to tech.

Twitter’s goals, if not ambitious, seem to mirror efforts by other tech companies. Google, which has made a similar push to include more women and underrepresented minorities among its rankings, saw the number of women in its technical roles increase by 1 percent last year. Apple likewise saw its female ranks rise by 1 percent over the past twelve months.

So nobody can argue that Twitter isn’t attempting to match the efforts of other firms. But the slow rate of change will probably irritate those who want to see the tech industry change faster.

Image Credit: Twitter

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