As 2020 comes to a close, we’ll see a proliferation of year-in-review pieces highlighting how companies have navigated a remarkably unprecedented year. At Twitter, we’re proud of how we have continuously pivoted, first to protect and support employees during a global pandemic, and next by doubling down on our commitment to understanding and combating systemic racism and anti-Blackness in the United States and around the world.
But it would be a disservice to all of the hard work that’s occurred across our business to solely focus on the curveballs the year has thrown us. At the beginning of the year we unveiled a bold new vision for 2025 and our initial plan for the hard work required to drive progress across the company. I’m proud to say that despite the unpredictable nature of 2020, we’ve still made meaningful progress against these goals, and I want to tell you about it.
First, a quick refresher on the vision we set forth early this year: by 2025, at least half of our global workforce will be women, and at least a quarter of our US workforce will be underrepresented minorities. Check out our Q4 diversity numbers to see the steady progress we’ve made in 2020.
Along with that bold vision, as a company we doubled down on deeper commitments across leadership, transparency, and accountability — all to drive progress along our journey to be the world’s most diverse and inclusive tech company. Here are a few highlights from our work across the company:
Accountability starts at the top. So in addition to the company-wide goals set for workforce representation, we worked with our executive team to clearly define their proportional share of responsibility for driving progress, taking into account the size of the businesses they lead, their open headcount, projected pace of hiring, and average attrition rates.
In order for our approach to work, every employee at Twitter needs to be aligned on what we’re trying to achieve — not just the executive team. That’s why in 2019 we created an internal diversity dashboard so any Tweep can track in real time how we’re doing against our workforce representation goals by gender (global) and race/ethnicity (US), with filters for leadership and technical/nontechnical roles — and hold us accountable.
We recently launched version 3.0 of our diversity dashboard which dramatically expands transparency across these metrics, providing visibility across the board to give Tweeps the opportunity to critically examine how their team is doing and be part of the solution. In version 3.0, the only instances where we restrict visibility on the diversity dashboard is when the size of the team is too small to maintain the privacy of our Tweeps.
Responsibility for I&D progress belongs to all of us. That’s why the new dashboard also includes an action roadmap that outlines five simple steps every Tweep can take to drive progress in their part of the business.
We also spent 2020 exploring ways to build on our industry-leading transparency on workforce representation to include impact or outcome-based metrics. One of the things we are looking at is representation in leadership roles and pay equity. Our first step in this new area examines differences by gender, which we will share in our annual report early next year. Work is also underway to increase pay transparency and starting in 2021, we’ll share with Tweeps the pay bands for their individual position.
Another important body of work this year was around promotions. Like most companies, we often get questions from Tweeps who want to better understand how promo decisions are made. So in addition to sharing with Tweeps the results of a review of the audit of promo data that we conducted, we’ve launched a Consistency & Fairness Taskforce to review our promotions process across Twitter from end to end. This work will explore new measures to disrupt potential bias: a data-informed promotion readiness pipeline; increased transparency and consistency in the frequency, makeup and process of promotion committees; and increased communications and training about the process.
Finally, we’re pleased to have made even more strides this year in inclusive hiring (check out our career site for open roles!). Building on learnings from a pilot program in 2019, we have expanded our Diverse Slates Initiative (DSI) from Senior Director roles to all Manager and above roles across the company. Moving forward, for a hiring decision to be made on any open role, at least one woman (global) and one Black or Latinx candidate (US) must have been considered by the interview panel.
The expanded DSI is complemented by an Inclusive Hiring e-learning module centered on five principles we want every Tweep to understand and follow:
Taking stock of what actually went right in 2020 is quite the flex. But in retrospect, the strides we made across our inclusion and diversity efforts in leadership, transparency and accountability are significant. They represent the extraordinary efforts of Tweeps across every part of our business. Thanks to them, we’re continuing to take bold steps. Each is intended to push us, and our industry, forward. And we’re not stopping, #UntilWeAllBelong.
Did someone say … cookies?