Apple celebrates diversity on its website while admitting it needs to do more

Serenity Caldwell
14 August, 2014
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Apple, diversity, us, macworld australiaIn recent months, Apple has dedicated several new sections of its website to ads and causes the company is passionate about. The latest, unveiled this week, centres around the company’s diversity and inclusion policy in the US. Apple created a new video for the US page, which also includes a letter from CEO Tim Cook and demographic details on the company’s 98,000 US employees.

The video (whose narration sounds like it might come from West Wing vet Allison Janney) carries forward the diversity theme first introduced in Apple’s July 7 Pride short film. It highlights employees from the company’s corporate and retail arms, noting, “We put inclusion and diversity at our very centre… we want people to be themselves.”

Cook’s letter reiterates this belief, stating:

“Our definition of diversity goes far beyond the traditional categories of race, gender and ethnicity. It includes personal qualities that usually go unmeasured, like sexual orientation, veteran status and disabilities. Who we are, where we come from and what we’ve experienced influence the way we perceive issues and solve problems. We believe in celebrating that diversity and investing in it.”

The published data understandably steers clear of the more private aspects of such information, focusing instead on traditional diversity statistics: race/ethnicity and gender in Apple’s non-tech, tech and leadership fields.

apple diversity dataThe company has an impressive US ethnicity mix overall, though Cook implies in his letter that he’s striving to improve that. “As CEO, I’m not satisfied with the numbers on this page,” he writes. “They’re not new to us, and we’ve been working hard for quite some time to improve them. We are making progress, and we’re committed to being as innovative in advancing diversity as we are in developing our products.”

The company’s gender balance is, like the rest of the tech industry, a little less than thrilling: only 30 percent of Apple’s US workforce is female, with only 20 percent in technical positions and 28 percent in leadership positions. That said, three of the four recent senior executive hires that Cook highlights in his letter are women: Angela Ahrendts, Lisa Jackson and Denise Young-Smith. Recent board of directors addition Sue Wagner also merits a mention.

To see the details – or if you simply want to see a minute’s worth of smiling faces – check out Apple’s entire webpage.

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