Free «The Other Side of Google Inc.» Essay Sample

The Other Side of Google Inc.

Ethical business is a serious concern in modern business. The concept was developed after the industrial revolution, when it was evident that business could go to any length to obtain profits. The aspects of unethical business include environmental degradation, employee exploitation, poor working conditions, workplace discrimination, harassment and tax evasion amongst others. As a result, the businesses condone massive violations threatening the existence of social and physical environments. Today, companies have reversed these practices to maintain their sustainable development. The practices can normally be viewed in either annual or sustainability reports. The practice of ethical business requires businesses reports on areas they are not scoring highly as well. The current paper evaluates the image of Google Inc. as a public company through the prism of existing forms of discrimination with respect to equal employment opportunities.

Google Inc. is a company established in 1998 and currently headquartered in Mountain View, California. Currently, the company has more than 40,000 employees globally, and it operates in various countries of the world. The core business of Google is provision of information with main services in web search, advertisements and voice, video and image transmission. The company has also diversified its operations to produce the smartphone Nexus, operating system Android, Google Books and Google Chrome browser. The multinational company is worth of $356.3 billion and has 68% share of the search engine market (Google Inc. 4).         

According to article “Best Companies 2014”, Google Inc. has been voted the best company to work for in the United States for eight consecutive years (1). The criteria for evaluation involved various parameters, such as training, diversity, compensation and work environment. The evaluation was made by the American public. In a different survey, employees rated the Chief Executive Officer at 96%. The employees mentioned job satisfaction, good compensation and easy access to opportunities as the main reasons for the rating. However, during these periods, Google Inc. deliberately failed to release information on its organizational diversity until 2014. The image portrayed by the data demonstrates that everything is not as well as these surveys try to show it.

The data from Google Inc. indicates gender discrimination with the company preferring male to female employees. According to Google, the company’s workforce consists of 70% of male employees, and only 30% of fmale ones (“Making Google” 1). In work assignments, men still have dominant roles. For instance, jobs requiring technological skills involve 83% of male employees compared 17% of female employees. Non-technical jobs involve 52% of male and 48% of female workers. Finally, the situation with leadership positions resembles the one with technical jobs where 79% of leadership positions are appointed to male workers, while 21% is covered by female ones. Therefore, Google still maintains old schools’ thoughts of confining women to certain positions as non-technical jobs.

Vivex Wadwha, an analyst within the telecommunication industry, notes that half of software specialists in the U.S. are female; yet, statistics from Google do not reflect the trend. Further, Telle Whitney from the Borg Institutes notes that Google’s values in relation to employment of women are far below industry dynamics that stand at a minimum of 25% (Jacobson 1). It further defies logic how Google manages to succeed in organizational diversity for eight years.

 

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With respect to race, 61% of Google employees are white, 30% Asians, 2% black and 3% Hispanic (“Making Google” 1). The remaining employees are of mixed races. In both male and female categories, the majority of the jobs are held by the white people. There are, however, no Latinos or native Americana in the top management of Google Inc. Only three white females are appointed to 38 executive positions at Google. The situation is against the principle of equal opportunity (“Making Google” 1).

The U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) protects job applicants and employees from various forms of discrimination, such as age, disability, unequal remuneration, national origin, race, pregnancy, sex and sexual harassment. The operation of EEOC is backed by laws including the Civil Rights Act, The Pregnancy Discrimination Act, The Equal Pay Act, The Age Discrimination Act, The American with Disability Act and The Genetic Non Discrimination Act. This clearly indicates that Google has fallen way behind these legal requirements (Aryee, Chris, Tae-Yeol, and Seongmin 793). The gravity of the matter became apparent in 2010 when Brain Reid sued Google Inc. for discrimination against age. Reid filed a complaint that he had been sacked for being old at 54 years, while his colleagues often teased him calling him obsolete, slow or fuddy (Efrati and Koppel 1).

In addition to the company being biased in favor of men, it has faced yet another suit for providing different working conditions for male and female employees. The female employees were allowed to work at home, wwhile male employees had to work at their company stations (Efrati and Koppel 1). Thus, the benefit to the minority group became an example of employee discrimination. The extent to which equality is measured for both genders remains paradoxical since judgment is place personalities yet sexual orientation is completely different.

The image of Google Inc. in the eyes of the general public and employees continues to be strong. It is because the company is an attractive workplace for employment seekers. The social and economic context within which Google operates is more personalized than on a group basis. That is, the company presents its products as a personal brand. The same relates to compensation and other benefits to employees. Thus, an assumption can be made that the individuals taking part in the survey from the public or the employees made their choices in accordance with individual perception of the company. However, Hofstede and Hofstede relate this status quo to power distribution (1). Power distribution describes how inequality and discrimination is accepted in various parts of the world. As a result, the management and the less powerful employees accept the power distribution on the basis of gender and inequality. The theory identifies masculinity as attached to modesty, while femininity is associated with care (Aryee, Chris, Tae-Yeol, and Seongmin 795). This theory reverses the suit by men for discrimination and strengthens the view of female discrimination by Google. The idea of female employees working at home is viewed as the one connected with other old school feminine functions like cleaning and so forth.

 

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Further, Google employees are not members of any workers union. As a result, the possibility of collision connected with the release of the numbers on organizational diversity remains an administrative issue. Thus, over the years, Google has managed to keep the public and employees in the dark on the proportion of its workforce with regard to age, gender and sexual orientation (Google Inc. 18).

In conclusion, the brand of Google products and good treatment of individual employees has made Google Inc. the most admirable company for both the public and employees. However, if to take organizational diversity into consideration, it becomes obvious that the company does not very well with respect to gender and racial equality. The company is dominated by men and white people. The notion of no “person of color” and the fact that there are only three women in senior management are an indication of this issue. Further, women are mostly appointed to non-technical jobs; yet, over 50% of the software labor force include women. With this information in the public view, it will be important to see whether Google will retain its top position as the best company to work for in 2015.