LISA BROWN, the diversity and inclusion consultant for Volkswagen Group of America, said the automotive industry has to market to the Black community and do business with Black-owned firms. (Freddie Allen/AMG/NNPA)

(NNPA)–As tech companies struggle to recruit and hire African-Americans and other minorities, companies in another billion-dollar industry, have embraced the importance of diversity and inclusion strategies that are critical to the future success of their businesses.

A recent report published by General Motors found that African Americans account for a higher share of the automaker’s workforce in the United States compared to their share of the total U.S. workforce. Blacks account for 18.1 percent of the total U.S. workforce at General Motors, according to the company’s 2017 “Diversity & Inclusion” report.

GM also reported that 35 percent of all of the company’s U.S. hires were minorities in 2016.

In the report, Mary Barra, the chairman and CEO of General Motors, said that, “at a time when the auto industry, technology and customer preferences are changing rapidly, diversity and inclusion are more vital to GM’s success than ever before.”

KEN BARRETT, the global chief diversity officer for GM, said that diversity and inclusion programs make good business sense. This photo was taken at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. (Freddie Allen/AMG/NNPA)

Meanwhile, “tech companies like Google, Facebook and Intel have shown little progress since first releasing their diversity numbers in 2014,” according to the Silicon Valley Business Journal.

Google’s own workforce demographic data released in 2014 showed that only 2 percent of the tech giant’s staffers were Black. In fact, the San Francisco-based software firm Atlassian reported that Blacks account for just 2 percent of the tech industry’s entire workforce.

Some tech companies don’t even recognize they have a problem.

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