Uber Holder report: 3 things to know
Uber publicly released the results of former Attorney General Eric Holder’s review of the company’s internal practices on Tuesday, the same day that longtime CEO Travis Kalanick said he would take an indefinite leave of absence from the ride-sharing startup.
“Implementing these recommendations will improve our culture, promote fairness and accountability, and establish processes and systems to ensure the mistakes of the past will not be repeated. While change does not happen overnight, we’re committed to rebuilding trust with our employees, riders and drivers,” Uber’s Chief Human Resources Officer Liane Hornsey said in a statement.
Holder and Tammy Albarran, a fellow partner at law firm Covington & Burling, conducted the investigation amid allegations of harassment, discrimination and mismanagement against the $68 billion startup. The company’s board of directors unanimously approved the proposed changes on Sunday.
Here are three major takeaways from their report:
1. Leadership Shakeup
The Holder report strongly recommended several changes to the company’s executive branch, some of which reassign tasks that currently belong to Kalanick. Uber’s board should “review and reallocate” Kalanick’s responsibilities and appoint a chief operating officer to share the burden and help enact key recommendations, according to the report.
Additionally, Holder suggests that Uber should conduct performance reviews for top executives, implement more careful oversight of its board and place a greater emphasis on diversity efforts within the company.
2. HR Revamp
The report encourages Uber’s board to place a greater emphasis on employee preparation, in the form of both mandatory training programs for executives, human resources staffers and employees responsible for interviewing job candidates. Holder urged Uber to devote more resources and managerial support to the HR team, and to make it easier for employees to report misbehavior through a standardized complaint process.
In addition, Holder recommended a much greater emphasis on diversity, both for current employees and throughout the hiring process. Uber was told to establish a “diversity advisory board,” publish diversity statistics more regularly and enact a policy of interviewing at least one woman and one individual from a minority group for key positions.
3. Workplace and Culture
Amid a wave of sexual harassment claims and gender discrimination, Holder and Albarran recommended “changes to employee policies and practices.” Designed to curb inappropriate behavior, the changes include guidelines for romantic relationships between employees (including a ban on relationships between managers and their team members), policies on alcohol and drug use, and a clearer promotion process for high-performing workers.