At a time when the tech industry already faces heavy criticism for being out of touch with the needs and views of people of color, comes more bad news: Google has a hard time retaining Black employees.
The company, based in Mountain View, Calif., released the finding, among other things, this week in its annual diversity report, writes CNN. A high attrition rate for Black employees has offset hiring gains at the company, the report says.
“Attrition rates in 2017 were highest for Black Googlers followed by Latinx Googlers, and lowest for Asian Googlers,” according to the report. “Black Googler attrition rates, while improving in recent years, have offset some of our hiring gains, which has led to smaller increases in representation than we would have seen otherwise.’
Black and Latino workers at Google accounted for 2.5% and 3.6% of the U.S. employee pool, up very little from the previous year’s figures of 2.4% and 3.5%, according to CNN.
Google also tried something new with this report in taking a look at race and gender together. The news was not good. The report concluded that Black women and Latino women account for the smallest percentages of Google’s employee pool, according to CNN.
The report notes that Google’s leadership is 74.5% male and 66.9% white.
People of color at Google have spoken out recently to say the culture at the Mountain View headquarters makes them feel unsafe, which is why the company has difficulty retaining workers of color.
Several employees have filed discrimination lawsuits, including former Employee Tim Chevalier, who claims wrongful termination and failure to prevent discrimination and harassment, writes CNN.
The suit alleges that some workers use Google’s internal social networking and messaging systems to make derogatory comments about women, people of color and colleagues who are LGBTQ.
Google offers a statement in the report that indicates an intent to work toward filling the gap.
“We look forward to inviting you back next year to see what progress we make,” Danielle Brown, Google’s chief diversity and inclusion officer says in the report. “We are determined we will have the impact the world expects of us, and that we expect of ourselves.”