Twitter promises it will be a more diverse company by 2016

Twitter promises it will be a more diverse company by 2016

Twitter, like many Silicon Valley companies, has always heavily skewed white and male. To combat the problem, the social network announced new hiring goals for improving diversity within its ranks by 2016.

In a post published Friday, Twitter said it wants to increase the percentage of female employees from 30% to 35% next year, as well as boost women in technical roles from 10% to 16% and women in leadership roles from 21% to 25% in the same timeframe.

Twitter also pledged to increase the number of underrepresented minorities in its workforce, with the goal of hitting 11% overall (up from 7% last year), 9% in tech roles (up from 3%), and 6% in leadership roles (up from 4%) in the U.S.

“We want the makeup of our company to reflect the vast range of people who use Twitter,” wrote Janet Van Huysse, Twitter’s vice president of diversity and inclusion. “Doing so will help us build a product to better serve people around the world.”

Twitter’s big push follows on the heels of Pinterest, which announced in late July its own diversity-minded hiring goals for 2016. Those included increasing hiring for full-time engineering roles to 30% female and 8% underrepresented ethnic backgrounds. Pinterest also promised it would interview at least one female candidate and one person from an underrepresented ethnic background for every open leadership role moving forward.

Even if Twitter meets its goals for 2016, the social network will have a lot more work to do if it wants to match companies like Pandora and Indiegogo, both of which came out on top last year with regards to employee gender diversity (51% male to 49% female, and 55% male vs 45% female, respectively).

But the announcement is a welcome one, especially following some flack Twitter received last month when its revenue team reportedly threw a frat-themed party, replete with Dixie cups, pizza boxes and a beer keg.

And let’s not forget: making meaningful headway, particularly when it comes to diversifying the workplace, doesn’t happen overnight.

Twitter promises it will be a more diverse company by 2016.