The founding of Zest in 2009 established a mission to make fair and transparent credit available for all. This pursuit is informed by a deep understanding of how centuries of systemic racism and discrimination have led to an inequitable financial system for many people, and threatens the American economy by limiting access to economic opportunity for underbanked and underserved populations. We see evidence of unfair treatment in the data that flows through the consumer lending industry today, and Zest AI works to eliminate that bias using machine learning and data science.
Just as we know people are more than a three-digit score, we know you cannot build fair technologies and great companies without a workplace that encourages and celebrates diversity. We are the sum of our perspectives, experiences, expressions, and wisdom. It’s what makes our company strong and powers products that enable greater economic fairness and inclusivity on a national scale.
Zest continues to build and celebrate a more diverse and inclusive workforce, an environment where every Zesty can do their best work and shine, irrespective of color, race, religion, gender, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, national origin, genetics, disability, age, or veteran status.
It’s not enough to say these words if we don’t act. We are proud of our gender pay equity for all comparable roles and will continue to do so into the future. There is so much more we can accomplish.
External activity goals:
Supply chain: Increase the number of our vendors that are black-, minority-, or women-owned businesses.
Policy: Advocate for strong fair lending policies and laws, ensuring that rigorous enforcement and auditing standards carry forward as the industry moves to further utilize machine learning credit models.
Improving access to financial services: Develop better race and gender proxying algorithms for lenders and regulators so the industry can measure fair outcomes with a more accurate representation of the people they serve. Educate and advise minority-owned and community banks on using data science to improve credit access to customers.
*This is a living document that we will continue to add to as we go. We will report on these on an annual basis and publish our metrics.