Published in


D&I at Enigma: June 2018 Diversity Report & Next Steps

By Anh-Thu Huynh, Jenny Kang, Vivien Ngo, Kat Tuttle

As covered earlier in this blog series, the Diversity and Inclusion Guild is a new group at Enigma focusing on ensuring the cultivation of both a diverse and inclusive culture. Guild members are employees from all levels and all parts of our organization, and we aspire to build a diverse, inclusive, and exemplary work environment at Enigma that will be one of the best in its class in the technology industry.

As a group, we realized early on that it would be impossible to measure progress on diversity and inclusion goals without data on what the company looks like today. To that end, we’ve committed to sending an internal D&I survey every six months and publishing a public report on our diversity data. This is the first report we’re publishing, which reflects the results of the survey as it was sent in June 2018.

Where we stand today

Our June 2018 Diversity & Inclusion survey was sent to 97 full-time employees, of which 78.4% responded. We’re excited to share that since the last survey was conducted, we’ve grown to about 120 employees, and we look forward to including them in our next survey this month!

Footnote: In our survey, we phrased this multi-select question as “Which of the following best describes your gender identity? Man/Male/Masculine; Woman/Female/Feminine; Non-binary/Genderqueer/Gender Non-Conforming; Agender/Androgynous; Prefer not to say.”

Footnote 1: In our survey, we phrased this multi-select question as “Please select one or more of the following options that best align with your race or ethnicity: African; Middle Eastern/Northern African; American Indian or Alaskan Native; East Asian; South Asian; Southeast Asian; Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander; Black or African-American; Hispanic or Latinx/o/a; White/European; Other.”

Footnote 2: The reason the charts for management and Engineering have fewer identities visible than that for Enigma overall is because respondents in any category with fewer than 3 responses were compressed into “Other” in order to preserve their anonymity.

Footnote: In our survey, we phrased this multi-select question as “Do you identify as a member of any of the following LGBQ communities? Gay/Lesbian; Bisexual/Pansexual; Queer; Asexual/Greysexual; Prefer not to say; No, I do not identify with any LGBQ identities.” Respondents in any category with fewer than 3 responses were compressed into “Other” in order to preserve their anonymity.

Footnote: We defined “caretaker” as someone who provides regular care to either a child or someone other than their child (e.g. an elderly family member). Also worth noting is that in March 2018, we updated our parental leave program to expand the benefits we offer to new parents at Enigma!

Footnote: For the purposes of our analysis, we defined underrepresented minoritized (URM) groups as: Female-identified; Black or African American; Latinx; American Indian or Other Native Group; Southeast Asian, Pacific Islander, or Native Hawaiian; Two or more races; and LGBTQ.


All questions on our internal survey were optional and all questions that did not have yes/no answers were multi-select, which means for some of these charts the total number of respondents adds up to greater than the total number of employees. Additionally, respondents in any category that had fewer than 3 responses were compressed into “Other” in order to preserve anonymity, which is why there is sometimes a discrepancy between the categories presented by the questions and the data that we are sharing here.

Moving forward

As a data company, we’re strong believers in data-driven solutions. Once we analyzed the survey results, the next step was to make the results actionable. In order to do that, we had to answer three questions:

  • Where are the challenges?
  • What is our definition of improvement?
  • What steps will we take to get there?

When looking through the survey results, we realized we had low numbers for women and underrepresented racial or ethnic groups at Enigma — a common problem across the industry. Out of the those who responded to the survey, 27.8% of employees identified as women and 16.5% of employees identified as a member of an underrepresented minority or racial group. For the immediate future, we are measuring improvement by the growth of both populations within Enigma, as well as increasing our involvement with the data and tech communities in order to reach a larger audience of women and underrepresented minorities.

Next steps

We recognize this is a work in progress — we’re not going to see results after a two-week sprint, so we’re creating the foundation and recording our actions along the way.

Campus-level programs

In the past, we leaned towards hiring more senior technical candidates, but after six months of research and experimentation this year, we concluded that years on a resume are not an indicator of success at Enigma, which lead us to building a campus recruiting program this fall. At first glance, campus recruiting seems we’re only opening our focus to a wider range of years of experience, as opposed to what is traditionally seen as the indicia of D&I — i.e. race, gender, sexual orientation. It’s actually both — university students currently studying computer science are a more diverse cohort in terms of traditional D&I indicia in comparison to software engineers working at major tech companies.

If you compare the cohorts of CS majors from 1991/1992 with CS majors in 2013/2014 by racial/ethnicity group, you’ll find the percentage of CS majors who identify as an underrepresented minority or racial group increased (here we are focusing on Black and Hispanic populations, because of the data available). Looking at the racial/ethnicity makeup of engineers at the top ten tech companies, the 2013/2014 student cohort is more diverse.

In 2013/2014, 9,974 women were awarded degrees in the fields of CS and Information Science, compared to 45,393 men. While women actually make up a lower percentage of CS grads in recent years than seen in 1991/1992, the sheer volume of women has increased significantly. It’s exciting to see these changes not only from a hiring perspective, but also because it’s an opportunity to offer resources such as Enigma Public and host workshops and tech talks to provide further education and opportunities for underrepresented minorities in tech. For the 2018 fall campus season, we attended career fairs at seven schools in the US & Canada. For comparison, we only attended three career fairs during the entire 2017–2018 school year.

We’re also looking beyond career fairs, actively seeking ways to share resources at the university level. This includes establishing a presence at conferences as well as smaller tech events and info sessions. This fall, we attended and presented at the Grace Hopper Celebration — the world’s largest gathering of female technologists. We also recently worked with universities in the Northeast to host tech talks and Python workshops, both on campus and in our office.

Community engagement

In addition to engaging people at the university level, we’re also prioritizing our involvement with the broader technical community. Through a D&I lens, we’re looking at events and partnerships linked to underrepresented minority groups — which for us includes female-identified; Black or African American; Latinx; American Indian or Other Native Group; Southeast Asian, Pacific Islander, or Native Hawaiian; Two or more races; and LGBTQ.

In just the past few months, we’ve partnered with groups such as Women Who Code NYC and Women in Machine Learning and Data Science for events in our office. To ensure our space remains a friendly and safe environment for our guests, we also created an official code of conduct, as outlined in our previous blog post. We’re excited to grow our engagement with the diverse communities of professionals locally in New York and beyond.

Measuring our progress

We plan on conducting our survey biannually, the second iteration of the survey going out this week. While our current goal is to improve metrics around women and underrepresented minorities at Enigma, we anticipate future surveys to be both a marker of our progress and an indicator of where we should be focusing the guild’s efforts.In the meantime, we plan on collecting and analyzing D&I-related data wherever and whenever we can. This includes data from our recruiting and interview processes, such as measuring the impact of our fall campus recruiting and adding voluntary demographics questions to our job listings to collect EEOC data from applicants.This is an exciting time to be at Enigma, and we’re looking forward to being open and transparent about our diversity and inclusion progress. If you work on D&I at your company and want to share tips or collaborate, please reach out!

Originally published at www.enigma.com on December 4, 2018.



Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store