After Multiple Protests, Google Is Updating How It Handles Employee Misconduct Reports
Photo Credit: Google staff walk out from Google headquarters, over women's treatment, London on November 1, 2018. Staff at Google offices around the world are staging an unprecedented series of walkouts in protest at the company's treatment of women. Google chief executive Sundar Pichai has told staff he supports their right to take the action. (Photo by Alberto Pezzali/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

After Multiple Protests, Google Is Updating How It Handles Employee Misconduct Reports

Google has had its fair share of workplace drama following a 20,000-employee walkout in November. Since then, the company has rolled out new policies and initiatives to help its employees feel more comfortable in reporting issues and concerns. Today, the company announced that even more changes are on the way.

“The commitments we made in November aren’t just about changing policies or launching new programs,” Google’s Global Director of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Melonie Parker said in a blog post. “We want every Googler to walk into a workplace filled with dignity and respect.”

The company is revamping how employees can report misconduct by building out a new platform for people to voice issues. The company is also developing a separate website for temp and contract workers. The company will also let employees bring colleagues to harassment and discrimination investigations for emotional support.

The updates come after months of employees pushing for more racial and gender inclusivity within the company. 

The November protests ensued after it was discovered that executives were paid millions of dollars in severance packages after being accused of harassment and misconduct. Other stories of sexual misconduct within the company began bubbling to the surface as well.

Forced arbitration also became a key point of the protest. Google ended its policy on forced arbitration on sexual harassment and discrimination cases shortly after the protest, allowing employees to sue the company. In March, Google updated its policy to include all cases but continued to exclude contract and temp workers.

Two Google employees who helped stage the walkout say they have been demoted, along with a list of other workers who said they experienced retaliation from the company after the protest.

“We prohibit retaliation in the workplace, and investigate all allegations,” the spokesperson said to the New York Times. “Employees and teams are regularly and commonly given new assignments, or reorganized, to keep pace with evolving business needs. There has been no retaliation here.”

Google wants to be more transparent with its workplace policies and has made the rules public. As more updates develop, it will be interesting to see how they are implemented in the workplace, or if we will hear more about misconduct issues.