We want to be a company where Dropboxers from any background can build a career they love. That’s why we’re committed to building a team with diverse perspectives focused on creating innovative products for our users around the world. We’re working hard to minimize the biases that exist in the workplace by changing how we recruit, promote and retain employees with unique life experiences.
Here’s what we’re doing:
- Recruiting and spotting talent: We’ve changed the types of questions we ask in interviews and trained interview debrief moderators on inclusiveness. We’re also proactively sourcing women for technical and management roles, and recruiting graduates from historically black colleges and universities. Since making these changes we’ve doubled the percentage of women in technical roles.
- Promotions and growth opportunities: To ensure that everyone has the same opportunities to grow, we’ve worked with experts to identify how bias can affect career trajectory. For example, the word “abrasive” can be applied to women while the same attribute is referred to as “confident” or “assertive” when it comes to men. We want to figure out ways to head that off through bias training and adjust our performance review processes to be as objective as possible.
- Engagement and retention: We’re working hard to retain and engage diverse employees by looking at engagement and satisfaction numbers on a regular basis. If we see differences in results between groups of people, we actively address them.
We recognize that these initiatives are just small steps toward tackling a much larger issue. Until the pool of diverse candidates increases in technology overall, these steps can only take us so far. Solving the problem at-large requires a long term effort to engage women and underrepresented minorities in STEM early on.
- Engaging the community: We’ve empowered Dropboxers who are passionate about engaging kids in technology to pilot their ideas. For example, we’re working with Circle the Schools, which paired Dropbox with a local high school for mentoring, tutoring, and fundraising. We’re also working with All Star Code, a non-profit focused on helping black male high school students engage in computer science. And we’re powering our own Dreamcode Tour, where we visit high school classrooms in the Bay Area to inspire students from all backgrounds to dream big about possible futures in tech.
These are early steps in view of how complex these issues are, but we’re optimistic that the tech community’s leadership and work in this area will make a difference. It’s a privilege to be involved in making a diverse tech workforce a reality, and we’re committed to putting our best effort forward.