How Pinterest plans to build a more diverse workforce

How Pinterest plans to build a more diverse workforce

Like Facebook, Pinterest is implementing the “Rooney Rule,” which mandates it interview at least one minority candidate for each job opening. Additionally, Pinterest is announcing some diversity goals, essentially putting its new hiring practice on the clock.

Currently, Pinterest is roughly 42 percent female across the board, which dips to 21 percent across its tech divisions. The company also has a minority issues; set aside White and Asian employees, and minority percentages never crest 11 percent at Pinterest.

To help diversify Pinterest, the company is dedicating itself to entertaining more minority candidates using the following internal rules, which they hope will yield results by 2016:

Increase hiring rates for full-time engineering roles to 30 percent female.

Increase hiring rates for full-time engineers to 8 percent underrepresented ethnic backgrounds.

Increase hiring rates for non-engineering roles to 12 percent underrepresented ethnic backgrounds.

Implement a Rooney Rule-type requirement where at least one person from an underrepresented background and one female candidate is interviewed for every open leadership position.

To achieve those results, Pinterest plans to expand recruiting to new universities, and start an intern program specifically for “freshman and sophomore students from underrepresented backgrounds.” The company will also be working with an outside agency to start “Inclusion Labs” internally, which it hopes will spark initiative for improved diversity.


Pinterest will also have employees participate in an unconscious bias program, and “support the creation of a training and mentorship program to maximize the impact of Black software engineers and students, led by one of our engineers.”

In implementing the rule (and unconscious bias program), Pinterest is following the footsteps Facebook laid before it. The interesting angle here is that Pinterest is giving itself reasonable goals to meet by the new year. Come 2016, we’ll have hard data to know if the NFL’s “Rooney Rule” also applies to Silicon Valley.

Our plan for a more diverse Pinterest [Pinterest]

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