Uber, the world’s largest privately-held start up, released its second annual report on global diversity. After a tough year in 2017, the company reported slight improvements in diversifying its workforce during the past year.
Women – Some 18% of the company’s IT employees – such as engineers and computer scientists – are women, compared with 15% the year before, according to Uber’s 2017 diversity report. The company added nearly 3,500 US employees, with the proportion of women increasing to 33%, up from 30%.
Black – Uber also reported a slight gain of black IT in the company, up 2.6% from 1%. However, its overall black employment dropped to 8.1%, down from 8.8%, according to the company’s EEO-1 report. The report covers the US workforce from December 2016 to December 2017.
Uber CEO – Uber is “just starting” to improve diversity and inclusion, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi told CNNMoney Monday. “Honestly, I do not think we know what” good “is, we know what is” better “and we want to get better.”
First CDO – Last month, the company hired Bo Young Lee as its first chief diversity and inclusion officer. Uber sees Lee’s hiring as another important step to enhance its diversity and culture in the future.
No Targets – In contrast to other tech companies, Uber has not set specific targets for diversity employment. The CNN report also made no mention of specific initiatives to boost awareness & inclusion, such as online diversity training or video-based diversity training.
Inclusive Language – The company attributed its gains to modifying its interview processes to reduce stigma. It also rewrote more than 1,500 job descriptions to ensure they used inclusive language.
ERGs – Uber also has sought to foster Employee Resource Groups. About 7,000 employees, up from 2,000, participate in ERGs such as Women of Uber and Black Hue.
Leadership Struggles – But Khosrowshahi said the company’s diversity must be “improved in all areas, in particular leadership. “Although we have taken good steps in terms of diversity in the company, we want it to be reflected in leadership as well,” he said.
Women in Leadership – Overall, women in managerial positions in Uber fell by one percentage point to 20%. Uber’s women in technology leadership have grown more than 4% to nearly 16%, but there are still no non-white and non-Asian technology leaders.
Wage Equality – Human Resources Manager Liane Hornsey points to advances in wage equality. Uber said in August that wages would be adjusted to ensure that all employees, regardless of sex or race, receive equal pay based on their position, work and position.
Start of a Journey – “I want to be very clear that we’re at the start of the journey — and [diversity] is not something we think we can become amazing at really, really quickly,” Hornsey told CNNMoney.