- Google has been working on upgrading its workforce diversity data, but at the same time, it's finding itself embroiled in an age discrimination lawsuit, according to Computerworld. The tech giant is fighting claims of age discrimination in federal court, where two job applicants who were rejected for positions are claiming that their age eliminated them for positions (both are over 40).
- Google insisted in a court filing last week that its policies "rigorously forbid discrimination of any kind," including age discrimination.
- Cheryl Fillekes, a programmer (the other plaintiff is Robert Heath, 60), filed a motion that asks the California federal court to force Google to divulge all names and contact information of engineering applicants since Aug. 13, 2010 who received an in-person interview and didn't get a job. She also asked the court to expand the case to software engineers and one other type of engineer, but the court rejected it.
In its defense, Google said it has received "over one million applications" for those specific jobs since 2010, but didn't give up how many received a real-time interview. It also said it had no way of knowing how many of that 1 million were 40 or more years of age because it "does not collect data on the age or birth date of its applicants."
Fillekes claims Google recruited her four times, in 2007, 2010, 2011 and 2013, and each time she got an in-person interview but not the job. Google's legal response says neither plaintiff "offers a coherent theory" or "substantial evidence" on their claims.
One major Google contention is the use of the data point about the average age of a Google employee, which the plaintiffs' lawyer states as 29. Google says that's not close to being accurate, though didn't offer a different number (a federal government report has it at 42.6).
Google, along with the rest of Silicon Valley, has been attempting to boost its relatively weak diversity numbers. Back in April, technology writer Dan Lyons (and writer on the show, Silicon Valley) claimed HubSpot essentially practiced ageism in its hiring tactics. The average age there was also 29. Other writers have also pointed out Silicon Valley's implied ageism.