The law firm Covington & Burling released its full list of recommendations Tuesday on how the embattled ride-hailing startup Uber can fix its culture after complaints of sexual harassment.
The news comes the same day Uber CEO Travis Kalanick announced that he’s taking a leave of absence.
Uber’s board has fully voted to adopt all the recommendations (which are embedded in full below). Those recommendations include reallocating some of Kalanick’s responsibilities, as well as enhancing board oversight and improving the human resources and complaint process.
Former attorney general Eric Holder and Tammy Albarran, partners at Covington & Burling, conducted the report, which included 200-plus interviews with current and former Uber employees. Holder and Albarran evaluated three major areas, including recent allegations of discrimination, harassment and retaliation, whether Uber’s practices and policies are sufficient, and next possible steps.
Focus on diversity
The report recommended a chief operating officer and an increase in Uber’s diversity efforts by regularly publishing diversity statistics and using blind resume reviews, for instance. Indeed, “diversity” was a word used often in the report, particularly with regards to management and a potential COO.
“Some of the skills and experiences the Board should look for in a COO include: candidates with backgrounds in diversity and inclusion and candidates who are themselves diverse; candidates with experience dealing with organizations that have complicated labor and operational structures; and candidates with experience in improving institutional culture,” the recommendations read.
Uber started the search for a potential COO earlier this year, which Kalanick told employees about back in March.
A rough few months for Uber
Also on Tuesday, Kalanick sent a company-wide email revealing his plans to take a leave of absence from the company, basing the decision on recent events that have “brought home for me that people are more important than work.” His mother recently died in a boating accident.
The $68 billion ride-hailing company’s reputation has taken a beating recently following a slew of scandals over the last three months, including allegations of sexual harassment and developing secret software to outsmart local authorities, not to mention the loss of at least nine executives, including Uber SVP of Business Emil Michael this week.
In February, The New York Times reported that 200,000 people had deleted their Uber accounts. It turns out Uber’s internal business operations make a difference, at least for some customers.
Here’s the full list of recommendations.
Correction: Due to an editing error, this article initially referred to the full list of recommendations as a “full report.” The error has been corrected.
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