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Workplace Equality Gets A Seat At The C-Suite For Tech Giants

Adrian Dixon

November 16, 2018

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Is it time for workplace equality to be so integrated in business that it is no longer a topic that is discussed?


Salesforce has long been a leader in workplace equality and workplace diversity initiatives.

In terms of diversity hiring, Salesforce implemented their version of the Rooney Rule by interviewing at least one female candidate or underrepresented minority for executive positions.

In terms of equal pay, Salesforce recently assessed the compensation of more than 17,000 employees and spent $3 million to equalize the pay between female and male employees. This occured with those of similar tenure, levels, and performance.

The workplace equality numbers are speaking for themselves according to Salesforce. In 2015, nearly 40% of all new Salesforce hires in the US were women or members of an underrepresented minority group (e.g., African American, Hispanic, Native American), which was an increase of approximately 5% over the previous 12 months.

And now Salesforce is leading the tech industry again: CEO Marc Benioff announced at TechCrunch Disrupt SF that Salesforce would be appointing its first Chief Equality Officer, who will report directly to him.

We can just focus on our own results, our own tech, but you won’t get the joy that comes from giving, the real pleasure of helping people. You’re not only helping other people, you’re helping yourself.
-Marc Benioff, Salesforce CEO

At the beginning of last year, Intel CEO, Brian Krzanich, made a bold move by setting an aggressive workplace equality goal for Intel’s U.S. workforce to reflect the available talent pool by 2020.

We know from the data that workplace diversity and workplace equality are becoming competitive differentiators for attracting and retaining candidates. 67% of active and passive job seekers consider diversity as an important factor when comparing companies and job offers.

As industry giants and leaders, Intel and Salesforce are making big moves in their workplace equality initiatives. Other tech companies are expected to follow suit to not only “do good” but to also attract and retain the best talent who can afford to be picky in the current candidate-driven market.