The US Department of Labor (DOL) on Monday announced it has reached an agreement with Google LLC to settle claims of “systemic compensation and hiring discrimination” at the tech giant’s California and Washington campuses. Google will pay over $3.8 million to nearly 6,000 current employees and job candidates.
Following routine compliance evaluations at Google facilities in Mountain View, Seattle, and Kirkland, Washington, the agency’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs cataloged “pay disparities affecting female employees in software engineering positions.” At Google’s San Francisco, California, campus the office identified “hiring rate differences that disadvantaged female and Asian applicants” for similar software engineering positions.
The DOL outlined the terms of the settlement in an 87-page early resolution conciliation agreement. Over the course of the next five years, DOL is mandating that Google allocate a “cash reserve” of at least $1.25 million in pay-equity adjustments for the company’s largest nation-wide campuses. Additionally, DOL ordered Google to pay $3,835,052 to settle the agency’s discrimination allegations:
- $1,353,052 to more than 2,000 female engineers subject to pay discrimination.
- Over $1 million in back pay to 1,757 female and 1,219 Asian applicants for software engineering positions.
According to the settlement, Google has agreed to “evaluate its hiring process for software engineering positions and ensure equal access to opportunities for all eligible and willing applicants and employees.” The agreement also mandates Google to assess its recruitment, screening, and interviewing processes for compliance with Executive Order 11246–an order prohibiting federal contractors from discriminating in employment decisions “on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or national origin.”
Google has agreed to provide DOL with annual progress reports on its evaluations, policies, procedures, proposed actions, and training practices.
“The technology industry continues to be one of the region’s largest and fastest-growing employers,” said Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs Regional Director Jane Suhr, in San Francisco. “Regardless of how complex or the size of the workforce, we remain committed to enforcing equal opportunity laws to ensure non-discrimination and equity in the workforce.”