How Pinterest’s Culture Drives Its Recruiting Process

video_screenshotNow at nearly 400 employees, Pinterest has put a lot of thought into its people. A recruiter was one of the first hires that CEO Ben Silbermann made when building his team. From the beginning, the company sets a high culture bar for candidates, knowing that the people who make up the organization truly are its differentiating factor.

Pinterest has defined its four core values: Knit, Go, Put Pinners First, and Be Authentic. These values are woven into the culture and recruiting practices - from internal collaboration to a great candidate experience.

Adam Ward, Pinterest’s Recruiting Lead, says that the four core values are woven into the interview process in several deliberate ways.


To determine if a candidate will “knit” in with the organization, the company has a Fit for Pinterest Interview. This interview specifically focuses on culture fit and is conducted by a small set of calibrated employees from across the company.

“This is one of the ways that we worked closely with Greenhouse and was a huge help for us. We could quickly update the job kit and Scorecards to quickly roll out a new culture fit interview process across the company. We can track the success of those candidates against those culture interviews, and eventually we can see if that is predictive to performance over time.”


Adam says they want the process to move at a fast pace. He believes that part of the ideal experience of a candidate is feeling like the process is moving quickly.

Put Pinners First.

Candidates should also know where they stand. Pinterest puts candidate needs first, which “ends up being a better experience for them and for us,” Adam says.

Be Authentic.

Not only will they move quickly, and ensure that candidates know where they stand, but Pinterest recruiters try to always deliver authentic feedback.

“For a candidate, it’s not necessarily knowing whether you got role or didn’t, it’s the purgatory in the middle that is the worst experience. It’s the not knowing. So the quicker we can move, the more feedback we can give them, and give them authentic feedback, it ends up being a better candidate experience that is more true to our core values.”

Mike Joyner, Pinterest’s VP of Operations, says that Greenhouse helps drive a deep conversation before the process begins, and keeps it simple for employees so that they can be involved on a day-to-day basis.

“We chose Greenhouse because we wanted a partner that could provide us with two things. One, is someone that had a strong point of view that was aligned to how we think about recruiting and what good recruiting looks like. And then, of course, we wanted a partner that was building great technology and was at the right scale so that it was not too structured, and great for huge companies, but also one that had a strong future ahead of it, so that we could grow together.”

Watch the video to learn more about the recruiting culture at Pinterest and how they say that Greenhouse helps them attract the best talent.

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