Twitter Reveals Company’s Lack of Diversity, Efforts to Improve

Twitter publicly shared its gender and racial diversity, declaring, “We have a lot of work to do”

Twitter gender diversity

Following other tech giants like Google, Yahoo and Facebook, Twitter has come forth with its own diversity analysis, and declared itself lacking.

The company’s 3,000 employee workforce is 70 percent male, which is virtually identical to the data released by Google (70 percent of 52,000) and Facebook (69 percent). Yahoo fared slightly better with its internal analysis, coming in with a 62 percent male workforce of its 12,000 total employees.

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When looking at leadership positions, the percentages jump, with 79 percent of Twitter’s leaders skewing male. While non-tech positions are evenly split between men and women, at 50 percent each, tech positions are predominantly male at 90 percent.

Twitter racial diversity

The workforce at Twitter is also predominantly white, at 59 percent, with Asians making up the next largest segment at 29 percent. Whites and Asians make up 88 percent of the total Twitter workforce, which is again comparable to the other tech giants.

Google reported a workforce 91 percent white and Asian (61 percent white, 30 percent Asian), while Yahoo came in with 80 percent of its workforce white or Asian (50 percent white, 39 percent Asian).

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When looking at leadership positions, the percentage of white workers jumps to 72 percent, while Asians make up 24 percent. That leaves only 4 percent for all other ethnic groups.

Like the other tech companies who announced their own data publicly, Twitter has pledged to work toward greater diversity. In a piece titled “Building a Twitter We Can Be Proud Of,” Janet Van Huysse, VP Diversity and Inclusion, touted the value of a diverse workforce for a company that reaches such a diverse audience.

“Like our peers, we have a lot of work to do,” she wrote.

“Research shows that more diverse teams make better decisions, and companies with women in leadership roles produce better financial results,” Van Huysse continued. “But we want to be more than a good business; we want to be a business that we are proud of.”

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Van Huysse went on to detail the organizations Twitter is working with, including employee-led groups and external organizations like Girls Who Code and Year Up. The company also hosts conferences and dinner events for outreach into under-represented groups, encouraging them to explore careers in technology.

“We are keenly aware that Twitter is part of an industry that is marked by dramatic imbalances in diversity — and we are no exception,” Van Huysse admitted. “By becoming more transparent with our employee data, open in dialogue throughout the company and rigorous in our recruiting, hiring and promotion practices, we are making diversity an important business issue for ourselves.”