kim holmes director-business-technology

I am proof that diverse backgrounds make for good employees

In October, I’ll be celebrating my 19th anniversary with Discover. I’ve had amazing opportunities that have helped my career as well as the business. I have supported the launch of various products and services including the Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Card, Discover Personal Loans and the Discover Home Loans business. I’ve led project management and application delivery teams that support key customer touchpoints such as fraud, payments and customer communications. I also supported our Deposits business for a number of years. Before I joined Discover I worked for a large property-casualty insurance company in a variety of business and IT roles. I am proof that diverse backgrounds make for good employees – my undergraduate degree is in Humanities from Shimer College and my graduate degree is in Nonprofit Administration from North Park University.

How do you as a leader help move the diversity and inclusion needle forward at Discover?

One of the ways in which I support our diversity strategy is by being an active employee resource group (ERG) member. I am proud to be one of the founding co-chairs of Professional Women Impacting Results (PWIR) and a past chair of Black Organizational Leadership at Discover (BOLD). Another way is my work with Diversity Recruiting, Talent Acquisition and now the Business Technology Diversity and Inclusion committee to attract and recruit diverse talent. I mentor new employees that join our company through those efforts. Additionally, I work with Community Affairs and leverage Discover’s philanthropic efforts to support our diversity goals. The Discover Corporate Scholars program through the UNCF is an example of that work .

How have you seen the Diversity & Inclusion evolve during your 19 years here at Discover? 

The largest change is that we are now intentional in speaking about the need to address diverse representation as well as work to create a more inclusive culture.

Why do you think having a diverse employee base is beneficial to the company?

Companies with a diverse employee base perform better financially. Our customers – consumer and merchants – expect products and services that meet their needs and the most innovative solutions come from teams of diverse thinkers. A diverse employee base provides unique perspectives that highlight opportunities that might otherwise be missed. Diverse employees help the company better understand the voice of the customer. When we provide the best customer service possible everything else falls into place – a successful business, a reputable brand, and loyal customers.

Learn more about our Employee Resource groups here.