Corporate diversity programs could receive a boost from Glassdoor's anonymous insider reviews

Diversity is best experienced from the inside. Glassdoor says it will publish data on workforce diversity volunteered by insiders at thousands of companies.

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Panel at 2017 San Francisco conference on inclusivity in tech companies.

Photo: Tom Foremski

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Salesforce has come out on top in a new workforce diversity ranking from Glassdoor -- which for the first time is allowing employees and job seekers to enter their ethnicity and gender identity and rate their employers on their programs.

The new Diversity and Inclusion rating will show job seekers how much progress companies have made on their promises in creating a more diverse workforce. Glassdoor allows current and former staff to review their employer on an additional five factors such as leadership, salary, work/life balance, etc. 

"Everyone deserves the opportunity to thrive in the workplace," said Annie Pearl, Glassdoor Chief Product Officer. "We are helping millions navigate their careers and encouraging others to share their opinions without fear of retaliation."

A recent Glassdoor survey found that about 76% of job applicants consider diversity an important factor in deciding on which employment offers to accept. And about one-third would refuse to work at a company with a lack of diversity in its workforce.

Nearly two-thirds (63%) of employees said that their company is not doing enough to improve diversity and inclusion. 

Salesforce received a top Diversion and Inclusion (D&I) rating of 4.6 in Glassdoor's rankings, which are derived from a five -point scale with "very satisfied" at 5.0.

Google has an initial D&I rating of 4.5, Apple has 4.3, Accenture 4.2, Amazon at 4.1, Facebook at 4.0 and Uber at 3.9. There were a minimum of 75 internal reviews for each company. 

As Glassdoor users share more of their demographic information, the company says it will be able to share data around specific groups within companies to provide more information about diversity for job seekers. And the public nature of the sometimes sensitive information will likely provide an impetus to corporate diversity programs. 

Interestingly, job seekers can discriminate in job offers from companies -- based on race and gender identity among the workforce -- but it is illegal for employers to bias job offers based on an applicant's race or gender identity. An additional challenge to diversity is that tech companies have to deal with a shortage of qualified candidates in key demographics. 

Glassdoor sees its new ratings eventually having a much broader influence and acting as an accelerator  of an important trend. Companies will have to stand by their public D&I pledges rather than public relations announcements. 

Christian Sutherland-Wong, CEO said: "By increasing transparency around diversity and inclusion within companies, we can help create more equitable companies and a more equitable society too."

More details are here.

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