Apple Reveals How Much Progress Its Made on Workplace Diversity

PHOTO: Tim Cook shows off the new iPhone 6 and the Apple Watch during an Apple special event at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts, Sept. 9, 2014 in Cupertino, Calif.Getty Images
Tim Cook shows off the new iPhone 6 and the Apple Watch during an Apple special event at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts, Sept. 9, 2014 in Cupertino, Calif.

Apple is making strides to help foster more diversity in Silicon Valley, but the process to create substantial change appears to be a slow one.

The company's latest EEO-1 Federal Employer Information report shows the company made strides in increasing the number of women and minorities it employs. About 31 percent of Apple's workforce is female, up a little more than one percentage point, according to the report, which measured a 13-month period leading up to August 2015.

African Americans accounted for 8.7 percent of Apple's workforce, according to the report, with the addition of 1,475 new hires. That's 31 percent more than the number of people hired the previous year, according to the report. The number of employees who identify as Asian increased by 29 percent while the number who are Latino or Hispanic jumped by 24 percent, according to the report.

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Apple has a website dedicated to the company's commitment to diversity. The company posted the latest Equal Employment Opportunity report but made it clear "it's not how we measure our progress. The EEO-1 has not kept pace with changes in industry or the American workforce over the past half century. We believe the information we report elsewhere on this site is a far more accurate reflection of our progress toward diversity."

Apple's executive and senior management team, however, appears to be predominantly comprised of white men. Of the 103 executive and senior positions, 73 are held by white men. The report shows there are also 18 women on Apple's executive and senior management team.

For a company that burst onto the personal computing market in the Steve Jobs era with the slogan "think different," Apple employees have been hearing another call to action from CEO Tim Cook: "Inclusion inspires innovation."

"All around the world, our team at Apple is united in the belief that being different makes us better," he wrote in a 2014 letter. "We know that each generation has a responsibility to build upon the gains of the past, expanding the rights and freedoms we enjoy to the many who are still striving for justice."