Growing in the Greenhouse: Spotlight on Senior Recruiter, Ariana Moon

Greenhouse Senior Recruiter Ariana Moon is someone who is passionate about finding balance between her professional and personal goals. By day, she’s focused on running data-driven recruiting processes to hire top talent for Greenhouse and helping her team be the best it can be. After hours, you can find her in coffee shops or dance studios all over Manhattan, pursuing goals in creative writing and Latin dance.

We caught up with Ariana to learn more about her path to recruiting, her experience on the People team at Greenhouse, and how she manages to achieve such an impressive work/life balance.

Want to learn more about the team  at Greenhouse? Check out our interview with front-end developer Ellie Wawrzaszek here and recruiting coordinator AJ Biggers here.

Greenhouse: What was your first job ever?

Ariana Moon: Teaching middle and high school kids how to ballroom dance! This was part of a character education program, using dance as a medium to strengthen the participants’ abilities to communicate in a structured and respectful environment. It was really rewarding because I found that dance boosted the self-confidence of so many of my students off the dance floor.

GH: Wow! And what had been your experience with dance up until that point?

AM: I started dance as a freshman in college. Before college, I was primarily dedicated to piano and was homeschooled from the third grade so that I could travel for recitals. I fell in love with dancing because it not only involved music, but was also a safe social environment for me to learn. I was 16 at the time, younger than most of my freshman peers, and that coupled with my homeschooling background meant I had some, let’s say, catching up to do on socializing.

Ballroom dance offered me the structure I needed—you can start as a beginner, progress through clearly defined levels, and work towards various competitions. Most importantly, you’re partnered with another human and have to actively communicate to coordinate your movements. That was an experience that really spoke to me.

GH: You were an English major in college. What led you to pursue that course of study?

AM: I love reading and anything related to storytelling. As long as I can remember, I’ve wanted to be a novelist.

GH: Are you working on any projects at the moment?

AM: I’ve written a few short stories in classes I’ve taken post-college. Right now I’m working on a more ambitious project, which I dedicate time to in the mornings before coming to the office. The schedule can be hard, but it’s worth it!

[Editor’s note: You can find some of Ariana’s professional writing right here on the Greenhouse Blog. Check out all her contributions here.]

GH: How did you make the transition from majoring in English to recruiting?

AM: My first full-time job post college was in PR, which I thought would be a good use of my writing skills. Turned out my favorite part of that experience was mentoring several interns. That got me thinking about a career in talent management, which ultimately led me to an HR generalist role at a financial technology company. After a few years, I decided I wanted to specialize in recruiting, and around the same time, my then-team bought Greenhouse as our new ATS. From there, I started exploring the world of HR tech.

GH: Ah, so your first exposure to Greenhouse was as a customer?

AM: Yes! I was having some struggles with our ATS at that time, and we’d heard great things about Greenhouse.

GH: And what was your application process like with Greenhouse?

AM: Really quick! I applied directly, and within a week or so had an offer on the table. I was impressed by how attentive, friendly, and conversational everyone was. I also liked that I interacted with a mix of people across departments and seniority. I was especially impressed by the women I met in leadership roles, which made me confident that I’d have strong female mentors to look up to.

I remember my only hangup was that Greenhouse was a smaller startup than the FinTech company where I was working at the time. A big part of the reason I was looking to move was because I was working such long hours I was burning out. I was also actively competing in dance, so I wanted a work environment that would better respect a healthy balance of unplugging. Upon hearing my concerns, one of my Greenhouse teammates-to-be shared that he had two kids and that he still felt he had the flexibility needed to be successful, both as an employee and as a parent. That sealed the deal for me!

Since then, Greenhouse has always respected my need to take time away from work to recharge. Especially because we believe that we need to have balance in our lives to do our best work!

GH: Let’s talk about that a little more. What is your work/life balance like at Greenhouse?

AM: During my first two years, I was still competing in dance, and that was a huge part of my identity. After work, I’d go to the studio to practice. I’m really proud to say that every manager I’ve had at Greenhouse has been super supportive of this schedule.

Less specific to me, I’m really proud of how we at Greenhouse talk about our hobbies and celebrate them. We have Slack channels and a company-wide Extracurriculars Calendar where we can share information on any kinds of shows we’re doing outside of work, and I think that’s so cool. Instead of having separate personas in and out of the office, we believe in bringing our whole selves to work. Once, I taught a salsa class at Greenhouse, and another time, a bunch of coworkers came to watch a show I did to raise money for Alzheimer's. That meant so much—that my coworkers want and care to support my passions outside of work.

GH: You’ve been at Greenhouse nearly 3 years, which is kind of a lifetime in startup years. How has the company evolved over time?

AM: When I started at Greenhouse, we were about 70 people, and now we’re more than 3 times that size. The People team has grown from 3 people, including me, to around 20. That’s a lot of change! But the core of why I love Greenhouse—which is having a team that’s inspired, caring, ambitious, and tirelessly devoted to doing our best work while having fun—has stayed the same. I know our leadership team especially cares about creating an inclusive environment and is always searching for ways to make us feel heard and valued.

GH: What do you feel the relationship is like between the leadership and the People team?

AM: The HR tech industry is one that’s rapidly evolving, and I see our leadership team at the forefront of this shift. Instead of viewing HR the way it’s been traditionally viewed—as back-office, administrative, reactive—our leadership sees our People team as a key value driver of the business. More specifically, as a recruiter, I’m empowered to be a strategic partner to hiring managers and run processes that are as data-driven and streamlined as those of our sales and marketing teams. I love that our leaders put as much emphasis on hiring the best people as they do on closing deals that bring revenue to the business.

GH: How would you describe your current role? What’s a typical day like for you?

AM: At this point, I’ve supported hiring for every department at Greenhouse, and that’s been an incredible growth opportunity. I’ve been able to learn from so many people more experienced than I am. Almost 3 years in, I feel confident in how streamlined our recruiting process has become, and I continue to look for ways to be a more effective business partner. Beyond running job searches, my day-to-day is now focused on helping my Recruiting team be the best we can be, whether that means improving our existing processes, knowledge sharing with other teams or contributing thought leadership on all things recruiting.

GH: Do you have any favorite memories from your time at Greenhouse?

AM: Yes! For one of our company-wide Fun Days in 2017, each employee got to choose from a variety of sponsored activities. I really liked this approach to team bonding because you get to choose an activity that speaks best to your interests and then spend time with others outside your direct team who share that interest. These activities included cake-baking, glass-blowing, beer-brewing, ice cream-making, and a bunch of other options. I chose trapeze with the Trapeze School of New York, which also involved aerial yoga on silks and trampolining. Hands down one of the scariest and most thrilling activities I’ve ever ventured to do!

Want to learn more about working at Greenhouse and maybe join Ariana on the trapeze? Explore our open roles here.

Melissa Suzuno

Melissa Suzuno is a freelance writer and former Content Marketing Manager at Greenhouse. Melissa previously built out the content marketing programs at Parklet (an onboarding and employee experience solution) and AfterCollege (a job search resource for recent grads), so she's made it a bit of a habit to help people get excited about and invested in their work. Find Melissa on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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