Apple inches toward workforce diversity

“Apple’s diversity divide narrowed a smidgen over the past year, with its global workforce gaining ever so slightly in terms of the number of women and minorities it has among its ranks,” Dawn Kawamoto reports for InformationWeek.

“Apple’s figures released to the government show that as of Aug. 1 the company had 72,494 employees,” Kawamoto reports. “Of this group, 30% were female, compared with 28.7% a year ago. When white males and white females are taken out of the equation, Apple had a workforce composed of 40.5% people of color, compared with 38.7% in the previous year.”

“The tech giant also posts figures of its diversity efforts, which are based on June 2015 numbers, on its website,” Kawamoto reports. “In the blog Apple also notes that its global workforce was 31% female in 2015, compared with 30% a year earlier. Also, Apple reports that its US workforce was 54% white in 2015, compared to 55% in 2014. Asians accounted for 18% in 2015 vs. 15% in 2014. The number of Hispanic workers remained at 11% in both years. Blacks held 8% of positions at Apple in 2015, slightly up from 7% in 2014.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: Apple’s “Inclusion and Diversity” page is here.

Diversity report shows Apple’s U.S. workforce still mainly white and male – January 19, 2016
Apple’s Board of Directors says a call for diversity is ‘unduly burdensome and not necessary’ – January 15, 2016
Apple leads Facebook, Intel, Cisco, Google on gender diversity among Bay Area companies – November 17, 2015
Apple’s latest diversity report shows progress – August 13, 2015
Tim Cook is ‘personally involved’ in improving diversity at Apple Inc. – July 14, 2015
Apple donates over $50 million to diversity efforts – March 10, 2015
Apple CEO Tim Cook met privately with Jesse Jackson regarding diversity – December 9, 2014
Apple adds Vice Presidents, more diversity to Executive Leadership Team – August 15, 2014
A message from Apple CEO Tim Cook on diversity – August 12, 2014
Jesse Jackson calls on Obama to scrutinize tech industry’s ‘lack of diversity’ – July 28, 2014
Tim Cook: Apple will release diversity data ‘at some point’ – July 9, 2014
Jesse Jackson targets tech’s lack of diversity; sends letter to Apple, Google, HP, others – March 19, 2014
Apple changes bylaws after facing criticism about lack of diversity on board – January 9, 2014


    1. This “Inclusion and diversity” is a bunch of crap. If there are more qualified blacks to do a job than whites, and they have superior skill sets or qualifications then there should be more blacks in those positions, ditto for whites, asians, or any other race or “group” you want to categorize.

      That Apple pays attention to this at all makes me worried that they may be watering down their talent to fill in some bogus “quota”. If Apple wants to remain on top of their game they simply cannot be hiring people based upon anything other than talent, that includes gender, skin color, sexual orientation, age, or any other category or factor.

      1. twimoon, I do not believe that you and the 19 people who five-starred your post understand that Apple must record and track this type of employee information.

        In addition, I take exception to your characterization of “inclusion and diversity” as a load of crap. By nature, many humans tend to subconsciously self-segregate, favoring groupings that are familiar and alike in key ways. This occurs at all scales – countries, states, cities, communities, work, parties, etc. This is not necessarily a conscious action or inherently “bad.” It is natural to seek interaction and relationships with people with shared interests and cultural norms and experiences, and it is generally easier to relate to such people. But those social tendencies can result in unintended and detrimental consequences in some situations – politics, business, etc. – because people become divided into powerful and peon, or respected and ignored, based on factors that are not truly relevant to their personal merits or capabilities or performance.

        The people who benefit from these situations tend to be oblivious to them, and the people who are disadvantaged by these situations generally face difficult challenges in overcoming these unnecessary obstacles to their progress.

        Awareness and understanding are the first steps in eliminating these biases and helping to level the playing field. Demographic data plays an important role in understanding the current workforce composition and the historical trends.

        Diversity and inclusion is not about making radical changes or embracing and celebrating everything that is different from your basis of experience. The objective is not to turn everything around 180 degrees, or flip the advantaged/disadvantaged groups. The objective is for people to learn to work past their subconscious biases and tendencies to avoid unfairly penalizing, ostracizing or marginalizing others. The objective is to learn to appreciate that every individual has value, to learn to look past superficial or irrelevant “differences,” and to learn to avoid letting your subconscious biases push you towards unfair or flawed judgments or decisions. This diversity and inclusion mindset is good for business, good for communities, and good for society, the country, and the world.

        Infinite diversity in infinite combination…

  1. Anybody who thinks minorities and women don’t get hired just because they are less qualified is living in a dream world. Real world experiments show that if two folks with equal qualifications apply the white male gets the interview. If two people interview and give identical answers, the white male is hired. Affirmative action isn’t about hiring less qualified applicants. It is about making suite that the most qualified is hired. Thinking that racism and sexism in America has vanished is itself a sexest and racist assumption.

    1. That has not been my experience. It has become all a numbers game. I, as a manager, was strongly encouraged to give preference to women and people of color because of a corporate goal, as long as they where close to what I needed.

      1. My guess is that you were strongly encouraged to give preference to minorities after somebody in your company higher in the food chain noticed that you weren’t hiring any. The insidious thing about discrimination is that the person doing the discriminating almost never realizes that they are doing it.

        As I mention below, there have been literally thousands of experiments in which identical resumes, one from “Roosevelt Gomez” and the other from “Thomas Pinkney III,” or one from “Sarah Smith” and the other from “Sam Smith,” do not get identical results. Two interviewees who are operating from identical scripts do not get identical results. Two people with identical credit scores do not get identical results at the bank or from “their” real estate agent. All the people who are discriminating deny it, even after you show them the results.

  2. The way to sell diversity, without making some people feel as though they’ve done something wrong other than just do their jobs, is to make it clear it isn’t a remedy for social injustice. It’s a solution to global competition.

    We need more STEM workers period. We will not be able to compete with China and India in the not too distant future. You can’t toss a rock in Shenzhen without hitting an engineer. In America we’re training social justice warriors.

    So instead of it being about diversity for the sake of diversity, it should be about bringing people who traditionally do not seek jobs in STEM, into STEM. That does not offend. That is something you can cheer for.

    It says we need more highly trained individuals, instead of you may not get your next job if there’s a woman or minority who wants it. One statement makes you say bring on the tech workers. The other makes you say, “Not get a job? Even if I’m better?”

    1. Why should we bring people who traditionally do not seek jobs in STEM into STEM? It’s their choice.
      How do you bring people who traditionally do not seek jobs in STEM into STEM without giving them advantages that you are not giving to traditional STEM-seekers?
      Why would we give preferential treatment to anybody based on their skin color or their genitals?

      1. You don’t force them, but often people don’t see the opportunities. When I was very young, close to graduating from high school, my aspirations amounted to being a telephone man. I had inadvertently become a phone hacker. I was in an isolated world though. I thought one of the coolest jobs in the world would be being a phone guy, climbing the poles etc.

        Had it not been for a college outreach program introducing me to programming, it would never have occurred to me. There was no such thing as “career counseling” to speak of.

        The point is, not everyone gets the message. I would guess that many people don’t seek jobs in STEM, because they are not exposed to the fact that such jobs exist. Let alone that they might like them. When your only exposure to STEM is in high school classes, probably nothing looks more boring.

        Often even the best parents don’t know how to encourage their children. My parents knew it was important to get good grades. That was the extent of their advisement. Don’t bring home any C grades. When I said I was going to major in computer science, my father, having only seen late night computer operators shoveling cards into a computer asked, “Why would you want to do that? Those guys are a dime a dozen?”

        You cannot enforce equality, but you can try to make sure everyone knows about the opportunities available to them.

        I grew up in a world where no one said, “You can be anything you want to be.” Many people would say, however, “Oh, they don’t let black folks do that.”

        It’s the subtlety of not just knowing there are such things as lawyers, but knowing what it means to be a lawyer or doctor or engineer, what it’s like to be one, what you work on, what you have to study to become one, etc.

        At one point I wanted to enter the air force. I was immediately told this was not good idea.

        The idea that YOU as an individual can control where your life goes MUST be hammered into kids as early as possible.

        This begins in the home and the schools and the schools must help parents who themselves have no idea what to say to their kids.

        One of the worst things is that in many if not most public schools, no one asks a student what they are interested in doing until senior year. Career days are restricted to seniors.

        Career days should start in elementary schools.

    1. I would guess about the same time we close the gap on crimes with black and Hispanic victims. Poor neighborhoods have high crime rates, irrespective of ethnicity. See “Gangs of New York” for the Irish, “The Godfather” for Italians, etc. as groups rise out of poverty, crime rates plummet.

      How do you get out of poverty? Jobs. As long as women and people of color are the victims of discrimination, they will disproportionately be living in poor high-crime areas. As long as privileged white males keep denying all the evidence that discrimination is pervasive, it will continue.

Reader Feedback

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.