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“DEI programs in the tech industry are in broad retreat”

“DEI programs in the tech industry are in broad retreat”

CNBC notes not only cuts, but also scaling back of hiring: “By mid-2023, DEI-related job postings had declined 44% from the same time a year prior…. In November 2023, the last full month for which data was available, it dropped 23% year over year.”

Critical Race Theory offshoot “Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion” captured and imprisoned most of academia and many corporations in the aftermath of George Floyds death.

It was a frenzy to virtue signal and throw money at …. well that was the problem. What exactly were they trying to fix? The DEI industrial complex, fueled by tens of billions of dollars, had no actual solutions. I have argued endlessly that DEI makes things worse by focusing on group identity rather than individual merit, by setting groups against each other in zero-sum games, and by demoralizing and demeaning the very people (loosely, ‘non-whites’) DEI purported to help. And it is now widely recognized that the oppressor-opressed false narrative pushed by many if not most DEI programming is a leading contributor and instigator of antisemitism.

Can anyone point to any measurable accomplishment of the billions of dollars spend on DEI? And by accompishment, I don’t mean job creating for a DEI bureaucracy that adds zero economic value.

In the education field, which is largely divorce from DEI-conomics, it has been up to legislators and Governors in red states to scale back the DEI bureaucracy. In the corporate world, the virtue signaling appear to be meeting economic reality, and corporations are scaling back.

As CNBC reports, tech companies are eliminating DEI positions at a furious pace, with these “key points”:

  • After vocal commitments following the murder of George Floyd in 2020, DEI programs in the tech industry are in broad retreat.
  • Some companies have laid off DEI staffers and leaders of diverse employee resource groups, downsized learning and development programs, and cut budgets for external DEI groups by as much as 90% in 2023, sources told CNBC.
  • The cuts come as the tech industry doubles down on artificial intelligence. With fewer diverse voices represented in AI development, the resulting products could be less accurate or more harmful to users.

The article continues:

But in 2023, some of those [DEI] programs are in retreat.

By mid-2023, DEI-related job postings had declined 44% from the same time a year prior, according to data provided by job site Indeed. In November 2023, the last full month for which data was available, it dropped 23% year over year.

That’s a sharp contrast with the period from 2020 to 2021, when those postings expanded nearly 30%.

In line with this broader trend, both Google and Meta have cut staffers and downsized programs that fell under DEI investment.

The year’s cuts have also impacted smaller, third-party organizations who counted on big tech clients for work, despite the continued growth of those tech giants.

“Whenever there is an economic downturn in tech, some of the first budgets that are cut are in DEI, but I don’t think we’ve seen such stark contrast as this year,” said Melinda Briana Epler, founder and CEO of Empovia, which advises companies and leaders to use a research-based culture of equality….

Nearly every member of Meta’s Sourcer Development Program, more than 60 workers, was let go from the company as part of its layoff of over 11,000 workers, CNBC learned. They claimed to have received inferior severance packages compared with other workers who were laid off in the same time period. Meta’s Sourcer Development Program was intended to help workers from diverse backgrounds obtain careers in corporate technology recruiting.

Google also cut DEI leaders who worked with Chief Diversity Officer Melonie Parker, while Meta made cuts to several DEI managers — some of whom it hired in 2020.

Layoffs at Google and Meta also included employees who held leadership roles in their respective Black employee resource groups, known as ERGs….

While internal DEI programs have suffered, the cuts were arguably even harder for external organizations who expected the same amount of corporate sponsorship and support from tech companies in 2023 as they had the prior few years.

Consistent with the CNBC report, TechCruch declares, Tech’s DEI backlash is here:

DEI received a lot of support after the murder of George Floyd back in 2020, but support has waned these past few years.

It is supposed to be an overarching effort aimed at helping all disenfranchised groups, but when it is targeted, it is usually for racial reasons. Since affirmative action in education was overturned this year, founders and investors knew that the industry would find an excuse to go back to how things were, would find an excuse to stall or dismiss the little progress made these past two years. In a sense, they were right, and the decreased DEI support in business and tech has created ripple effects.

The corporate decline of DEI has been growing since ABC News reported last July, How corporate America is slashing DEI workers amid backlash to diversity programs:

DEI positions have been disproportionately hit by layoffs across industries, but particularly at tech companies, which have faced financial challenges as sales slowed from the blistering pace attained during the pandemic….

From September 2019 to September 2020, job postings for diversity, inclusion and belonging positions on the hiring website Indeed rose by 56.3%, the company said.

A LinkedIn study found that chief diversity and inclusion officer positions grew by 168.9% from 2019 to 2022.

The rapid organizational movement toward addressing inequalities was initially exciting for DEI professionals. But in just a couple of years, that excitement wavered as growth rapidly fell apart.

“The honeymoon is over,” Cecil Howard, a DEI consultant and former chief diversity officer at the University of South Florida, told ABC News….

Last year, the layoffs accelerated significantly, the study found.

Since DEI had few measurable benefits to corporations other than virtue signaling, the loss of those supposed benefits will not be missed, except by the people with vested economic interests in the feeding frenzy that is now ending.

[Featured Image: Slide from Coca Cola DEI training, via YouTube]


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DEI hires are toxic.

    AF_Chief_Master_Sgt in reply to smooth. | December 28, 2023 at 6:59 am

    I sat through one of those DEI programs at the company I recently retired from.

    The presenter identified and accused all whites for stealing indigenous peoples lands, and tried to have whites talk about how they could do better by recognizing that we were benefiting by stealing land.

    Then the presenter and her team told us that it was her job to make whites uncomfortable for their oppression of people of color.

    There was so much more. But in the end, the attendee backlash was so great that the presenter was not invited to come back for the second presentation.

      Hurray! Backlash is what it takes, and too many people have caved out of fear of being called racist/bigot/etc.

      The Gentle Grizzly in reply to AF_Chief_Master_Sgt. | December 28, 2023 at 7:47 am

      Sarge, I’m curious. What form did the backlash take?

        One way is to simply grab hold of the arguments made in these presentations and force the management to abide by them. Show up late every day, fail to complete tasks on time, organize a day or two of a ‘white out’ where employees all call in for a personal day so they can have an internal thought session, demand segregated facilities to protect PoC and so on. The key is ensure there is ‘find out’ to accompany the ‘f around’ begun by management and all of those things are about rejecting ‘whiteness, white adjacent, cis gendered, patriarchal behavioural expectations of Western culture.

        “What form did the backlash take?”

        It’s a figure of speech that means nothing happened.

          Peabody in reply to Peabody. | December 28, 2023 at 1:38 pm

          Don’t you remember the backlash against Muslim Americans after 9/11? Neither do I.

          Peabody in reply to Peabody. | December 28, 2023 at 1:43 pm

          Do you remember the backlash against Palestinians after all those Jews were massacred?

          henrybowman in reply to Peabody. | December 28, 2023 at 9:54 pm

          “Don’t you remember the backlash against Muslim Americans after 9/11? Neither do I.”

          Well, I do remember certain low-information nutbags in Phoenix shooting Sikhs because they wore conspicuous turbans. 🙁

          And I do remember a number of gun stores refusing to serve anybody who looked Middle-Eastern.

          CommoChief in reply to Peabody. | December 29, 2023 at 9:38 am

          Yeah there are a number of clowns who can’t be bothered to differentiate among those who look different than themselves. I had a buddy who’s family had been in what is now New Mexico at least as long ago as my own Dutch ancestors were in New Amsterdam (NYC). He still got hassled about being an ‘immigrant’ by some less than knowledgeable clowns.

          JohnSmith100 in reply to Peabody. | December 31, 2023 at 6:23 pm

          “against Muslim”

          All off us are now more aware, they have started the same BS we have seen for years in Europe.

      “… it was her job to make whites uncomfortable” Naturally, the “presenter” turns out to be a “her”. Feminism always was a racket, created to create more rackets.

    JimWoo in reply to smooth. | December 28, 2023 at 1:32 pm

    Incompetence or idiots

This is welcome news, but, we’ve got a long way to go to fully excise the cancerous rot of “DEI” schemes and orthodoxies in corporations and in government.

Look for the vile Dhimmi-crat snakes to re-brand “DEI” under some new moniker or monikers, and, to attempt to use more subtle rhetoric and methods, going forward, now that they’ve aroused popular and legal opposition to this obnoxiously inequitable and racist idiocy.

    guyjones in reply to guyjones. | December 27, 2023 at 9:22 pm

    My point being, we have to remain vigilant. It is impossible to reverse fifty-plus years of cultural and moral Leftist rot overnight. This is a lifetime project. The Dhimmi-crats toil 24/7 to propagate their noxious schemes and ideological poison. Just look at how quickly the “transgender” lunacy spread from being a benign and sequestered cabaret act in gay clubs, to becoming an utterly obnoxious, malignant, misogynist and fascistic ideology being foisted upon kids and teens, and, resulting in the wholesale subversion of and invasion of women’s sports and private spaces.

      CommoChief in reply to guyjones. | December 28, 2023 at 9:21 am

      Exactly. This isn’t a ‘one and done’ single event to be won but a series of events. That’s how the d/prog are able to succeed. They keep launching new things and folks on our side get burned out b/c we have real world jobs, families, hobbies. The d/prog have public sector jobs, union membership and a host of lefty NGO to do their bidding.

      chrisboltssr in reply to guyjones. | December 28, 2023 at 9:35 am

      Exactly. And this is what I keep trying to tell all the pro-lifers who want to fold to win “elections.” You will lose some elections precisely because it is going to take a long time to reverse the brainwashing done to Americans who support women murdering their unborn children. It will take the rest of America’s existence to wash that away, and even still the stench of abortion will still linger. That is what happens when evil is tolerated for even just a few years.

        guyjones in reply to chrisboltssr. | December 29, 2023 at 9:45 pm

        Very true. If you are taking a morally upright stance on an issue of total moral clarity (such as unborn babies’ right to life), you must be prepared to fight for the long haul, because the brainwishing and evil rot is that pervasive and deep.

It’s alive and well in the misFortune 500 company where I work. They are so proud of all their little black, women, Asian, LGBLT groups and we are reminded weekly in emails. Most of the communications we get are dripping with this nonsense. I wish we could go back to the pre-internet days.

    AF_Chief_Master_Sgt in reply to WestRock. | December 28, 2023 at 7:02 am

    Those damn Employee Support Groups were multiplying at my former employer. Every “oppressed” group had their, and had weekly meetings during work hours to air their grievances and make demands.

    guyjones in reply to WestRock. | December 28, 2023 at 2:36 pm

    “misFortune 500” — excellent witticism.

    guyjones in reply to WestRock. | December 28, 2023 at 2:38 pm

    Can you reveal what sector your company is in; e.g, Tech, Pharma, Energy, Finance, Consumer Discretionary, Real Estate, etc.? Just curious. Thanks.

I’m in the heart of a woke beast for a W2 role. This is a company in the middle of the Fortune 100 list.

Lots of pronouns in signature lines
Lots of unqualified middle management POC… being female POC is the winning lottery ticket. You can practically set a watch to how long you can be black, female and become a manager.

I’ve watched hundreds of millions be wasted by these managers.

There finally does seem to be a reckoning. But middle managers don’t just fire themselves. It’s a tricky business.

Here’s a trick… you get a female POC who doesn’t want to lose her job and she will fire them.

I’m not kidding. I see it playing out 2 different ways.

1- Female POC missed all of her targets (usually a fairly senior position- senior enough that you can’t fail to meet numbers forever. Now she’s got to shed positions. In this scenario- sadly the POC in middle management are not getting the axe.
2- Female POC is competent and is happy to put boot to ass of incompetent POC who cause everyone to look at her like she got her position because of skin color. I mean a betting person here is going to look at you and say you got there by having the right skin color and a vagina…. whether its true or not.

I don’t know if my microchasm of the F100 is indicative of the rest- but this company took a whooping going into 2020 and they really want to make numbers, so the gloves are coming off.

The tech industry they were actually far more susceptible to horrible DEI hires than in other industries.

Anybody that has written code can tell you that having a bad coder on a team is far, FAR worse than having no coder, because the actual competent ones have to spend a huge amount of their time un-screwing the damage the bad one did before they can START to do their own jobs.

The best case scenario for the DEI incompetents was to have them parked in ‘safe’ jobs where they just attended meetings and spewed BS while the real work took place elsewhere. Like apparently 80% of Twitter before Musk took over.

They aren’t hiring because none of the DEI hires are quitting. Why quit a large paycheck for doing nothing?

“They claimed to have received inferior severance packages compared with other workers who were laid off in the same time period.”

That’s because the other people had actual jobs that produced value for the company.

DeweyEyedMoonCalf | December 28, 2023 at 5:13 am

“murdered” is in a quote in the story, but it puts my hackles up every time it is used in reference to that event.

MLK was right. It’s the content of their character and not the color of their skin that’s the most important.

I wouldn’t want to hire a so-so ‘non-white’ over a much more qualified electrician just to feel the warm ‘n fuzzies.

I don’t believe it. I do believe that the tech industry would love for people to believe that their DEI programs are in ‘broad retreat.’ But, I think it’s far more likely that they’re in ‘broad disguise.’

The phrase, ‘a leopard doesn’t change its spots’ has endured for a very long time for a reason.

I rarely disagree with Mr. Jacobson, but I don’t see DEI being de-emphasized in high tech. As someone else commented, it’s in disguise.

I retired from IBM management a few years ago, but it hired an incompetent female CEO a few years ago. This is what is being emphasized by the new CEO, a man from India, where IBM has outsourced and offshored much of its software development and support:

Don’t focus on O’Keefe’s nonsense, as he likes to talk to hear his marbles rattle. Focus on what the IBM execs are saying about minority hiring.

    Don’t know about IBM, but silicon valley has moved mountains to recruit and retain non-white tech workers, with blacks as target demographic. They have found it impossible. So they donate laptops to inner city schools to get some kind of credit for being anti-racist. OTH silicon valley has found asian americans to very good fit, which typically means chinese americans and indian americans. They are driving the H1-B visa racket. But there is also the bigger picture that it is global economy, and many tech jobs can be off-shored.

The more DEI cuts the merrier

As someone with certs and applying in IT for a job, I have found the tech industry as not only stuck in the DIE trap, but the age discrimination trap along with incompetence at the managerial level. Age discrimination because many of these companies can hire a young person at a cheap wage. What is laughable is that some fast food restaurants pay more and tech companies are beginning to regret hiring this current generation because they want to be on Tik Tok and they complain about working.

As for upper management, I have never seen such poorly trained individuals when it comes to personnel and hiring practices. For instance, an entry level job at one company they wanted a Masters Degree with 5 years experience at $25 an hour. Another company that prides itself in Customer Satisfaction rescheduled two phone interviews with me and then disappeared.

This is an industry that needs a wholesale cleansing from top to top.

    jhkrischel in reply to natdj. | December 28, 2023 at 12:33 pm

    The ultimate problem in tech is that the salary ranges just don’t represent the value people produce. A “exceptional” tech, who does the work of five “standard” techs is never going to get 5x the salary of one of the 5. If they can’t tell if you’re an “exceptional” tech (super hard to do without really extensive interviewing and live pair programming), they have every incentive to low ball you. And even when they do discover you’re “exceptional”, paying you 1.5x what the “standard” guy makes is a steal.

    Whereas in the physical world, it’s difficult for one man to have the strength of 20 men, in the world of code, there are techs who are literally x100 of your standard offshore resource. Lacking any way of rewarding good techs causes all kinds of broken incentives.

I got email from USENIX (“the advanced computing systems association”) saying that they are losing membership and need support. I went to their annual report and there, emblazoned across the top, is the information that “USENIX supports diversity, equity, and inclusion and condemns hate and discrimination.” I think I’ll keep my money, thanks.

I worked in a highly woke industry (educational publishing). A few years back, shortly before covid, I was asked to lead a seminar on diversity because of my strong record of hiring minorities and LBGT… people. In actuality, I hired people who could and would do a great job and none of the other stuff mattered. No boss can look good if his staff does not perform well, and I fired people who didn’t measure up, regardless of immutable characteristics. They gave me the outline of the seminar, which began with me getting everyone to acknowledge that we were all working on land stolen from indigenous people. I retired the next week.

I’m really surprised that there aren’t more Civil Rights Act lawsuits.

Presidential candidate vivek ramaswamy now calling for dismantling of DEI. While isn’t obviously top of the ticket, he is “influencer” on the primary and could nudge the other candidates in this direction. He could also become possible cabinet appointment if biden loses.

I liked “try to be less white”. They say is means to focus on deadlines and planning and achievement, and more on acting “ethnic”. Fine I can do that.

Maybe too many white people figured this out, so they’re again only going to tolerate “ethnic” behavior from the favored ethnics, and not give whites any excuse to slack off.

This is, you understand, a result of recent news stories regarding the serious economic problems facing the Chinese Communist Party.

In the immortal words of Billie Holliday: “Money, you got lots of friends crowdin’ round the door, when you’re gone and spendin’ ends, they don’t come no more”

Or, in the words of an even more ancient Chinese proverb: “No tickee, no laundee”.