Facebook

San Francisco: Facebook aims to double the percentage of women working at the social media giant around the world over the next five years, while simultaneously doubling the number of black and Hispanic employees in the US, setting new diversity goals for the organisation.

The world’s largest social-media company also wants half of its US workforce to be from underrepresented groups by 2024.

“We envision a company wherein five years, at least 50% of our workforce is made up of women, people who are Black, Hispanic, Native American, Pacific Islanders, people with two or more ethnicities, people with disabilities and veterans,” Maxine Williams, Facebook’s chief diversity officer, wrote in a blog post Tuesday.

Facebook released the new targets alongside its annual diversity report, which details the ethnic and gender breakdown of its workforce.

“In doing this, we aim to double our number of women globally and Black and Hispanic employees in the US. It will be a company that reflects and better serves the people on our platforms, services and products,” she added.

In the report, the company said women currently make up 36.9 % of staff, up from 36.3 % last year and 31 % in 2014.

At the senior leadership level, women account for 32.6 % of staff, up from 30 % last year.

Williams said the company had achieved higher representation of women in leadership by focusing on hiring and growing female leaders. In technical roles, though, women account for just 23 % of staff.

The proportion of black and Hispanic staff in the company stands at 3.8 and 5.2 % of Facebook’s workforce respectively, up from 3.5 and 4.9 % in 2018.

Facebook said on Tuesday it had increased the number of black women at the company twenty-five fold since 2014. For black men, this was tenfold.

The company has put the most effort into diversifying its technical workforce, “so there are irony and frustration on our part that we have not been able to grow more,” she added.

Last November, a now-former employee went public with an internal blog post saying this company had a “black people problem,” and that the company was not doing enough to support black employees or black users.

The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People also encouraged a Facebook boycott in late 2018 after it was learned that Russians using Facebook to influence the 2016 US election heavily targeted African Americans.