Why does corporate America look nothing like America?
That is the question behind a USA TODAY investigative series exploring deep disparities inside the nation’s largest companies.
Reporters Jessica Guynn and Jayme Fraser, along with fellow journalists at USA TODAY, use federal workforce reports, census data, corporate filings and other records to document the slow progress toward equal opportunity in the S&P 100.
What we’ve found: The top ranks are still predominantly white and male, while women and people of color are concentrated at the lowest levels with less pay, fewer perks and little opportunity for advancement.
How we do it: Every year, companies send the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission a one-page form called an EEO-1, counting workers by race, ethnicity and gender in 10 occupational categories.
Federal officials do not release those records to the public, but to date most companies in the S&P 100 have voluntarily released their EEO-1s to USA TODAY. Our EEO-1 database is periodically updated with new data. (The database is current as of July 25, 2022.)
USA TODAY also uses other datasets to examine the representation of demographic groups.
If you have questions or suggestions, contact senior reporter Jessica Guynn at email@example.com or data reporter Jayme Fraser at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Select options from the table below to see the demographic information reported by America’s largest companies to federal regulators, which USA TODAY collects and updates each year.
Two years after George Floyd’s murder forced the nation to confront systemic racism, Black corporate leaders are making progress in the nation’s 100 largest publicly traded companies, a new USA TODAY investigation has found. Read the story
Chris Womack is one of the nation’s top CEOs and one of its top Black leaders. In a wide-ranging interview with USA TODAY, he said America’s biggest companies can achieve equity if they commit to addressing the challenges. Read the story
Calvin Butler Jr., a first-generation college graduate and the new CEO of Exelon, wants to show young people that they, too, can reach the highest ranks. Read the story
A year after its initial analysis, USA TODAY studied the demographics of corporate boards at an even wider swath of American businesses. The findings were mixed: Though people of color, including women, were named directors at a record pace, white men still hold the majority of board seats at dozens of brands even though they account for only a third of U.S. workers. Read the story
In an annual update that drew on data from 287 companies, USA TODAY found that stark racial inequities persist at America’s biggest companies despite pledges to do better. Reporters dig into why the gaps are among the widest for Black women. Read the story
Hispanic women and Latinas hold few executive jobs at America’s biggest companies and are underrepresented among managers and professionals. We spoke to those who have made it into leadership to understand the barriers and why their voices are important to the bottom line. Read the story
Few Asian women break into the senior executive ranks of top companies, a USA TODAY analysis found. They are Asian women are half as likely as white women to be executives, on par with Black and Hispanic women. Reporters spoke with researchers and Asian women leaders about why. Read the story
Despite the flashy rainbow-colored celebrations companies put on each year for Pride Month, there are few openly gay leaders serving on corporate boards. We spoke to LGBTQ business leaders about representation and tracking in a country with hostile public policy toward that community. Read the story
John Browne was the first CEO of major company to publicly say he’s gay and later wrote a book about the scandal that outed him. In an exclusive interview with USA TODAY, he discussed his experience and why progress has been slow. Read the story
Months after this series was launched, American companies were required to submit new data to federal regulators on their workforce. USA TODAY analyzed the latest wave of releases and explained the growing pressure from investors and shareholders to be more transparent and make more progress. Read the story
For Black History Month, reporters explored the history of workplace discrimination against Black Americans and dissected why significant gaps persist at the top of companies today. Rodney O’Neal, one of 19 Black CEOs in the history of the Fortune 500 list, shared the story of how he rose from making steering wheels to being CEO. Read the story
In the newsletter “This is America,” reporters take readers behind the scenes of how the corporate diversity series started and provide an overview of their findings from the project’s first eight stories. Read the story
The series launched with a sweeping look at the leadership in corporate America and the profound racial and gender gaps that persist decades after federal laws were passed to bar employment discrimination. The unique data analysis found that America’s largest companies were often less diverse than others in their industries and the U.S. labor force as a whole, putting them out of step with the people and the country they serve. Black and Hispanic workers, especially women, were among those with the biggest gaps between workers and executives. Read the story
Some of the nation’s most powerful brands still refuse to disclose data on the gender and racial makeup of their workforce – even though they are required to report that data annually to federal officials. Reporters dig into why the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has refused to release those one-page forms, called an EEO-1, to the public despite an ongoing lawsuit and what insights they could provide about corporate promises for equity. Read the story
Jessica Guynn first investigated diversity among some of the globe’s biggest tech companies in 2014. Years later, she found little has changed. A USA TODAY analysis shows that the young sector, largely born after the civil rights movement, is reproducing the kind of gaping racial disparities commonly exhibited by more mature industries like banking. Read the story
In 2009, Ursula Burns became the first Black woman to run a Fortune 500 company: Xerox, which she left in 2016. Today, only two Black women are CEOs of the nation’s largest businesses. In an interview with USA TODAY, Burns described her journey to the top of American business and made clear what corporate leaders must do to make good on promises for diversity, equity and inclusion. Read the story
“Values cannot be words on a wall,” he told USA TODAY for an exclusive Q&A. “Values need to be actions you publicly stand up for.” Read the story
A much higher percentage of white employees at the top banking companies hold professional and leadership positions than their Hispanic and Black coworkers. Although major players in the industry have made progress in recent years by shrinking racial gaps among managers, USA TODAY found that the divide remains wide among executives. Read the story
From Coca-Cola to Costco and Starbucks to Target: The staff ringing up your order largely mirrors America, but the people earning the big salaries and making the big decisions at those companies do not, according to a USA TODAY analysis. Read the story
Companies often point to the diversity of their boards of directors to distract from the concentration of white men in their corporate suites. But board membership at the companies examined by USA TODAY also did not reflect the racial makeup of their workforces, let alone the nation’s overall population, a year after many made promises following George Floyd’s killing. Read the story
Story Credit: usatoday.com