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Apple diversity report

Apple: Slow progress in diversifying its workforce

Apple has provided new data suggesting that internal initiatives are slowly increasing the diversity of its workforce. However, it seems that the company has a long way to go as it is still dominated by white male employees.

The U.S. tech giant has shared a new diversity and inclusion report, updating numbers that were released in 2018, while also comparing them with those of 2014.

Apple says that since 2014 the number of employees from underrepresented communities (URCs) has increased by 64%, or over 18,000 people, making up nearly 50% of its U.S. workforce.

There has been an increase of Hispanic, Latinx, and Black employees in the U.S. Hispanics and Latinx have grown by more than 80%, with a 90% increase in leadership, while Black employees increased by more than 50%, with a 60% increase in leadership.

The number of female employees worldwide has grown by more than 70%, with an 85% increase in leadership, Apple says.

The company has also shared its progress toward more inclusive leadership by bringing people into Apple and hiring from within:

  • 43% open leadership roles filled by people from URCs in the U.S.
  • 29% open R&D leadership roles filled by people from URCs in the U.S.
  • 37% open leadership roles filled by women globally
  • 26% open R&D leadership roles filled by women globally


However, comparing 2020’s data to 2018, the progress is not so impressive as the company claims. 

In fact, in terms of gender diversity the progress is rather slow, with Apple remaining a mostly male company. Male employees represent 66% of its global workforce, and women represent 34% of all employees, having increased only one percentage point from 2018 and 4 percentage points from 2014.

In the two years since 2018, Apple says that 42% of new hires have been women. Among employees under 30, the share of women has risen from 31% to 40% since 2014.


In terms of race and ethnicity, white employees represent 47% of the company’s U.S. workforce. The share of Asian people has also increased to 27% in 2020, up from 23% in 2018. Other races and ethnicities maintained their share, although the share of white employees dropped by 3% since 2018.

Apple workforce


Apple reiterated its commitment to increasing the number of managers from underrepresented communities, with a particular focus on outreach efforts for internal and external candidates from Black and Brown communities.

  • Racial Equity and Justice Initiative: Apple recognizes its responsibility to dismantle systemic racism and help grow opportunities for communities of color, particularly for the Black community. Starting with a $100 million commitment, its Racial Equity and Justice Initiative (REJI) focuses on three key areas to create lasting change: expanding access to education, advocating for criminal justice reform, and removing barriers for Black and Brown entrepreneurs.
  • Expanding the Apple mentorship program globally: Apple started with pilot programs for team members from underrepresented communities in the U.S. and the U.K. The company is expanding the mentorship program globally so it can offer employees the opportunity to learn from experienced Apple mentors across the company.
  • Support for development, from entry level to executive level: Equal opportunity starts with equitable access to career development programs and support, Apple says. From new‑hire orientation to succession planning, they’re embedding processes and resources that help current leaders develop future leaders equitably.
  • Inclusive hiring standards and processes: They’re also trying to build more diverse interview panels and candidate slates to ensure that diversity is reflected at every stage of the hiring process.
  • Expansive diversity outreach and external partnerships: Apple is expanding its diversity outreach efforts, including its ties with Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and other organizations that serve and engage talent from underrepresented communities.

“Inclusion and diversity are cornerstones of the global Apple community. We’re proud of the foundation we’ve built and clear-eyed about the challenges that remain. Together, we’re committed to continuing this journey with humility and resolve,” said Barbara Whye, Apple’s vice president of Inclusion & Diversity.

And it seems that this journey will be quite long.


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