Microsoft is the latest tech company to release public information on its employee diversity, and today said the percentage of its employees who are women is up compared to last year. The company said its global female workforce grew to 29 percent, up from 24 percent last year. Microsoft also said that the number women or minorities grew from 24 to 27 percent among its senior executives, and from 33 to 40 percent on its board of directors.
The number of female "tech" workers is far lower
Those figures put it in line with a number of other tech companies that have made employee gender and ethnicity public, including peers like Apple and Google. Both of those companies reported a nearly identical 30 percent global figure for female employees. In those cases, as well as Microsoft's, that number becomes much lower when just viewing tech workers versus non-tech workers. Microsoft says that among its tech workforce, the number of females is actually 17.1 percent.
"As you look at the data, you will see that we are in generally the same position as others in our industry," Microsoft's executive vice president of human resources Lisa Brummel said in an internal memo posted by ZDnet. "In our 20 plus years of committed efforts toward managing diversity and inclusion effectively, what we've learned is that diversity is not a finite goal that can simply be achieved, then 'checked off' a list; it is a journey that requires constant self-assessment and recommitment.
"Diversity is not a finite goal."
Along with the reporting on gender, Microsoft said its US workforce is 60.6 percent caucasian, and 28.9 percent asian. Like many others, the company did not report those ethnicity figures globally.
Microsoft's report follows breakdowns from Apple, Google, Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter, and many others, though the company is keen to note it's been releasing public information about its workforce since 2006. The more recent hope of these reports is to push for greater diversity at technology companies that are made up mostly of white and male employees. For its part, Microsoft employs 128,076 people globally, with most of those located in the US. By comparison, Apple employs 98,000 globally and Google has 52,069.