September 29, 2023

2022 State of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging

Andrea Cruz

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Andrea Cruz
Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging, Plaid

Andrea leads DEIB efforts on the People team at Plaid, she works to weave DEIB into all we do so our organization is one employees are proud to work at.

Last year, we published our inaugural 2021 State of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging (DEIB) blogpost to share how we approach DEIB at Plaid. In this post, we’ll share how we are continuing to strengthen our foundation and progress towards our vision that DEIB is fully embedded into who we are, how we work, and what we build. 

Diversity in Plaid Leadership

At Plaid, we recognize that championing diversity across the board, including in leadership, is critical to our mission of unlocking financial freedom for everyone. A diverse leadership team brings diverse perspectives and lived experiences to an organization. This translates to better decision making, better problem solving, and better ability to attract and retain top talent. Employees want to see themselves represented at the top.

That’s why, in late 2021, we launched the Pleadership Rule in partnership with our Recruiting team. The Pleadership Rule is all about boosting diversity through the thoughtful expansion of our candidate pools for senior leadership roles. The Rule ensures that we interview and consider qualified candidates from underrepresented groups for open senior leadership roles before we make a hire. We believe that by doing this, we will ultimately realize an increase in the representation of underrepresented groups among our senior leadership teams.

We’re excited to report that, in 2022, we meaningfully increased the diversity of our leadership team. We saw a 6 point increase in female representation, a 2 point increase in Black representation, a 2 point increase in multiracial representation, and a 4 point increase in Asian representation in our leadership team. We look forward to continued progress ahead!

Supporting our Plaid communities

Plaid Community Groups (PCGs - our name for Employee Resource Groups) are key partners when it comes to building belonging and understanding how to support the experiences of underrepresented groups at Plaid. We have 3 PCGs — Plaids of Color, PLGBTQ+ and Women+. PCGs not only create bespoke programming for their members, like financial literacy sessions and small group pairings to build community, they also build awareness across our organization for community needs. For example, our Women+ and PLGBTQ+ groups helped pave the way for more inclusive family planning benefits leading us to bring on Carrot Fertility as a provider for Plaids. 

To further enable these groups to thrive at Plaid, we spent time in 2022 thinking about how to help them scale. We launched a comprehensive playbook, inclusive of best practices, resources, and tooling to support PCG leaders and to clearly define the value PCGs bring to our team. We also set plans in motion to provide development opportunities specific to our PCG leaders in 2023 and continue to provide PCGs with an annual budget to execute on programs. 

In 2022, we also introduced Pl-affinity Groups as another way for employees to connect over shared identities. We launched our first 2 Pl-affinity Groups focused on supporting faith traditions and accessibility. 

Maximizing our efforts

At Plaid, we have a lean DEIB team. It’s vital that we find ways to empower every Plaid to drive and support DEIB efforts. We believe that supporting DEIB is the responsibility of everyone in the organization and should be embedded in everything we do. This builds a shared practice for DEIB at Plaid and ensures our efforts do not exist in a silo. 

Since our last post, we focused on empowering leaders at Plaid to carry DEIB into their day-to-day, and we supported leaders in the People organization in weaving DEIB into their company-wide priorities. Specifically we:

  • Partnered with our Recruiting team on efforts designed to help increase diversity in our leadership team and strengthen diversity-focused recruiting skills across the team

  • Worked with our People & Organizational Development team to ensure our manager development programming includes a focus on DEIB

  • Enabled our Workplace Experience team to embed cultural and heritage celebrations into our existing events strategy

This strategic work establishes DEIB as a fundamental component for people programs and contributes to the long term sustainability of DEIB at Plaid.

Looking ahead

We are proud of our progress on many fronts. Increasing the diversity of our leadership team, investing in scaling our communities, and maximizing DEIB efforts across the organization are important steps. That said, we know we have more work to do. 

It’s important for us to understand our past and present in order to design for the future. We use data, including representation data [1], to do just that. When we see dips in representation of certain underrepresented groups, we work to understand why. Our company surveys show that career development and belonging are opportunity areas, particularly for underrepresented groups. Because of this, since our last post, we are:

  • Investing heavily in manager development and improved systems for career development across the organization

  • Continuing to partner with our Recruiting organization to champion diversity

  • Growing our investments in Plaid Community Groups by providing professional development for PCG leaders and continuing to provide an annual programming budget

Our vision that DEIB is fully embedded into who we are, how we work, and what we build won’t be realized overnight. DEIB is an ongoing journey that we’re committed to at Plaid. We’re excited to continue making progress and to share more learnings next year. 

¹ Throughout this post you will see gender and, race and ethnicity data, which tracks to EEO-1 reporting. This is not because we believe these vectors are a comprehensive definition of diversity at Plaid, but rather because it provides two helpful dimensions to measure our progress compared to the industry. Plaid’s diversity efforts extend well beyond EEO-1 categories and includes other aspects of identity like sexual orientation, gender identity, and more.