At Twitter, we have a goal to reach every person on the planet. We believe that goal is more attainable with a team that understands and represents different cultures and backgrounds.
It makes good business sense that Twitter employees are representative of the vast and varied backgrounds of our users around the world. We also know that it makes good business sense to be more diverse as a workforce – research shows that more diverse teams make better decisions, and companies with women in leadership roles produce better financial results. But we want to be more than a good business; we want to be a business that we are proud of.
To that end, we are joining some peer companies by sharing our ethnic and gender diversity data. And like our peers, we have a lot of work to do.
A Twitter that we can be proud of is diverse, and it’s inclusive. After leading HR at Twitter for four years, I am now honored to focus specifically on these efforts. And we have a number of employee-led groups putting a ton of effort into the cause: WomEng (women in engineering), SWAT (super women at Twitter), TwUX (Twitter women in design), Blackbird (Tweeps of color), TwitterOpen (LGBTQ folks) and Alas (Latino and Latina employees). These affinity groups are inclusive of anyone passionate about their mission, and they have done tremendous work to make Twitter a more awesome place to work.
We know the critical importance of actively recruiting from under-represented communities such as women’s colleges and historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs). And to continue improving our diversity standing, we have partnered with many organizations to move the needle at Twitter. A few of those are:
- As its early “seed” partner, we have strongly supported Girls Who Code since its inception. We host both Summer Immersion programs and a Club program out of our San Francisco, New York and Boston engineering offices. Our CTO, Adam Messinger, sits on the board of GWC.
- We have hired interns from our long-standing internship program with Year Up.
- We regularly host Girl Geek Dinners, most recently in San Francisco and Boston.
- We have a local affiliation with sf.girls, part of San Francisco Citizen’s Initiative for Technology and Innovation (sf.citi). The group aims to inspire and empower middle school girls to pursue an education and career in technology.
- We are pleased to sponsor a number of conferences geared to under-represented groups such as the “Out for Tech” (Out for Undergraduate Technology Conference) and have actively participated in the Grace Hopper conference with Twitter engineering staffers presenting each year since 2011.
- We are providing bias mitigation training throughout the organization.
- We also support (by hosting, joining and promoting) many other initiatives aimed at helping women in STEM fields, such as Technovation, Techwomen, Chime for Change, LEAD Computer Science Institute, PyLadies, Black Girls CODE.
And earlier this year, our WomEng group was honored by the public-private collaborative Gender Equality Principles Initiative in San Francisco.
We are committed to making inclusiveness a cornerstone of our culture.
We are keenly aware that Twitter is part of an industry that is marked by dramatic imbalances in diversity — and we are no exception.
By becoming more transparent with our employee data, open in dialogue throughout the company and rigorous in our recruiting, hiring and promotion practices, we are making diversity an important business issue for ourselves.
Update: Click here to view our 2014 EEO-1 report.