Facebook diversity report offers glimpse into tech workforce gaps

In the U.S., 51 percent of Facebook tech staff are white, while Black and Hispanic employees respectively account for 1 and 3 percent of tech staff.
In the U.S., 51 percent of Facebook tech staff are white, while Black and Hispanic employees respectively account for 1 and 3 percent of tech staff.

In its annual diversity report, Facebook revealed that its U.S. workforce shows a sizable minority gap, particularly among staff in tech and senior leadership roles.

On Thursday, Maxine Williams, Facebook's global director of diversity, published the findings on Facebook's newsroom page. In addition to white employees making up 55 percent of its U.S. staff, they represent 51 percent of employees specifically in tech positions.

Statistics on minority staff showed that 36 percent of Facebook employees in the U.S. are Asian, while Hispanic employees make up 4 percent of the workforce, and Black employees only 2 percent. In tech roles, the disparity was larger for Black and Hispanic employees, who only made up 1 percent and 3 percent, respectively, of staff; while Asian employees accounted for 43 percent of staff in tech roles.

The report also broke out the ethnicity of U.S. senior leadership at Facebook, where 73 percent are white people. Asian employees made up 21 percent of senior leadership, while Hispanic staff accounted for 3 percent. African Americans represented 2 percent of senior leadership.

Despite the glaring workforce gaps, Facebook's diversity report was comparable to Google's, which reported earlier this month that 70 percent of its global workforce is white.

Domestically, Google's tech workforce is 59 percent white, and, at Facebook, white employees represent 51 percent of staff in U.S. tech jobs. Facebook did not publish global data on the ethnicity of its employees, but did reveal that 68 percent of global employees are men, while only 32 percent are women. Men also accounted for 84 percent of employees in tech roles, while women represented only 16 percent of the global tech workforce.

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