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Twitter Sets Measurable Hiring Goals for Women and Minorities

Twitter is publicly sharing its hiring goals for the next year.

Scott Olson / Getty Images News

A month ago, Twitter’s interim CEO Jack Dorsey told employees that diversity would soon be a company goal. Twitter was fresh off an embarrassing fraternity-themed party that only underscored Silicon Valley’s reputation as a place where women and minorities are often overlooked.

Today, Dorsey and Twitter followed through on that promise, and they’ve got the numbers to back it up.

Twitter reported its diversity metrics Friday, falling in line with the rest of Silicon Valley by reporting a predominantly white and male workforce. Two-thirds of Twitter’s global employee base is male, and men also claim 87 percent of the company’s tech jobs; ninety percent of its U.S. employees are either white or Asian.

Unlike most other tech companies, however, which often provide lip service on how they plan to improve those ratios, Twitter is setting measurable goals for each of these categories as a way to hold itself accountable. For example, it wants to grow its percentage of women in tech roles from 13 percent to 16 percent in the next year. It also wants to grow women in leadership roles from 22 percent to 25 percent.

They’re small increments, sure, but putting tangible numbers out there also puts pressure on the company to deliver. (You can guarantee that if it misses these marks, the media will point it out.) Janet Van Huysse, Twitter’s VP of diversity and inclusion, wrote in a post Friday that the company will start recruiting more heavily at historically black colleges and universities and Latino-serving institutions this fall. It is also working to ensure its job descriptions are written to “appeal to a broad range of applicants.”

Kudos to Twitter for putting a stake in the sand. Perhaps other companies will soon do the same. Now the pressure’s on to actually change things at Twitter.


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