Google to settle hiring accusations

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Alphabet Inc’s Google will settle allegations that it underpaid women and unfairly passed over women and Asians for job openings. The company is going to spend $3.8 million, including $2.6 million in back pay. The information was provided by the US Department of Labor on Monday.

These allegations came out in light after a routine compliance audit several years ago when the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs had found “preliminary indicators” that Google at times underpaid 2,783 women in its software engineering group in Mountain View, California, and the Seattle area between 2014 to 2017.

There were also hiring rate differences for software engineering roles in San Francisco, Sunnyvale, California, and Kirkland, Washington. This resulted in disadvantage for several women candidates and Asian candidates in 2017.

The settlement includes $2.6 million in back pay to 5,500 employees and calls on Google to review hiring and salary practices. According to the settlement, Google will set aside $1.25 million for pay adjustments for engineers in Mountain View, Kirkland, Seattle, and New York over the next five years. Google has also said that any unused funds will be spent on diversity efforts.

Google in a statement said, “We believe everyone should be paid based upon the work they do, not who they are, and invest heavily to make our hiring and compensation processes fair and unbiased.”

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