Like other major tech companies, Apple has been under public pressure to increase the number of women and minorities in a workforce that is overwhelmingly male and white or Asian. Civil rights leader Jesse Jackson has been joined by members of Congress and other critics calling for Silicon Valley firms to make their employees more representative of the population as a whole.
Apple CEO Tim Cook said in a statement Thursday that he’s proud of his company’s efforts, but acknowledged, “We know there is a lot more work to be done.”
The maker if iPhones, iPads and Mac computers issued a report Thursday that follows similar reports from Google, Facebook, Intel and other large tech companies. Most of those companies only began disclosing their hiring numbers after Jackson began pressing them to do so last year. One exception is Intel, which has been releasing diversity statistics for more than a decade.
Apple Inc. said 35 percent of its new hires worldwide last year were women, while 24 percent of U.S. hires were black or Hispanic.
As a result, Apple’s global workforce of 110,000 is now 31 percent women, up from 30 percent last year. Its U.S. workforce is 19 percent black or Hispanic, up from 18 percent. That includes employees in non-technical jobs, such as retail positions in Apple stores. By comparison, about 26 percent of U.S. workers across all industries are black or Hispanic.