We Created an Award Winning Culture at Greenhouse – Here’s How

From the Grammys to the Golden Globes, 2019 kicked off with a solid entertainment award season. Just as exciting, we recently participated in our own award season here at Greenhouse! The end of 2018 was filled with recognition from prestigious workplace publications (just with fewer ballgowns and instantly famous Fiji Water girls).

We were proud, honored and humbled to be recognized with some of the best workplace culture awards around. We were even more excited by the fact that so many of our Greenhouse customers made these lists as well, speaking to their dedication to creating inclusive and positive environments for all.

Greenhouse’s Recent Workplace Culture Awards

But what makes us so great? Is it our flexible PTO policy? Or perhaps the beer on tap (and kombucha on tap in San Francisco)? After working here for almost a full year, I’ve come to a definitive realization. The perks are great, but we’re outstanding because our values are embedded into every initiative. Everyone is encouraged to be their true authentic selves, and to be effective and impactful.

Here’s what makes our culture so great that helps keep our employees happy, engaged and willing to stay.

Our Onboarding Process Is Beautifully Structured

We’re definitely People people here at Greenhouse. That is clear in everything that we live and breathe at the company, starting from the way we hire. As a talent acquisition tech provider, we’re committed to creating a more diverse and inclusive world. We use our own software to build stellar teams full of people who will add to our culture, rather than fit into it.

We welcome our employees with open arms even before they step foot into the office for their first day. Greenhouse Onboarding allows employees to create profiles to introduce themselves and knock out paperwork before their start date, and it also helps teams make sure each person knows their onboarding role through a set of automated tasks and reminders. This eliminates confusion and stress for new hires so that they can focus on absorbing information and building meaningful relationships.

We Put Our People First

It’s no secret that employee recognition is an essential driver of great employee experience. And at Greenhouse, we’ve definitely got that down. We have a myriad of initiatives that foster a sense of value.

We have our “#employee-warm-fuzzies” Slack channel for consistent visible shoutouts, and we celebrate anniversaries with balloons, cards and personalized bobbleheads. These bobbleheads are no joke. If you’ve been around for three years, you can expect your very own incredibly detailed bobblehead (even down to the flavor of Starbucks in your cup).

Furthermore, we ensure that everyone is able to achieve their professional goals so they’re constantly striving to be valuable contributors. Through quarterly goal-setting and weekly 1:1 chats, employees are empowered to do the best work of their careers, even if it means switching roles. Interestingly, it’s not uncommon to see a Sales Development Representative become a QA Engineer. When everyone is passionate, good work gets done.

We also host the annual “Gnomie Awards” (less known than the Grammys, but more meaningful than The Office’s “Dundies”). This is a chance to recognize employees who best embody Greenhouse’s values of being: authentic, effective, inclusive & open-minded, collaborative and customer-focused.

Our dedicated Employee Experience team works hard to ensure that all employees are feeling great, engaged and empowered to do their best work. From providing standing desks to organizing our company-wide Fun Days, this team has our happiness covered. They revamped our anniversary program to focus on memories over memorabilia with Blue Board, which we love. I for one can’t wait to choose my own adventure – (perhaps wine tasting?) – as a thanks for continuously contributing at a great company.

Cross-Team Collaboration Is the Reality

Finding ways to interact with people who aren’t on your direct team is never easy, beyond those quick kitchen chats about the snack selection. Even as we continue to grow and expand into new offices across the U.S. – and soon around the globe – we work hard to remain connected.

We organize monthly opt-in cross-team lunches and 1:1 chats to connect employees who don't necessarily work together in the same department or on the same floor. (Distributed workers are encouraged to join via video chat.) We also encourage people who work across different departments to be friends IRL and hang out outside of the office. When four or more teams come together, they’re able to expense the activity on Greenhouse’s dime.

And of course we offer some interesting Greenhouse clubs. They are a great opportunity to find people with similar interests, or to branch out and try something new. From Wine Club to Ski Club, there’s definitely something for everyone.

We Recognize That You Can’t Have Diversity Without Inclusivity

When we say that we value inclusion, we walk it like we talk it. A variety of inclusion groups allow us to be successful. We have a Culture Committee that is made up of about 12 employees nominated by their department leadership. Members are all high performers in their day-to-day jobs and consistently make meaningful contributions to our culture – from planning a team camping trip or office stretch and restore classes to coming up with creative ways to boost morale.

Another thing that I really love about Greenhouse is our Inclusion Task Force, a self-formed group of both leadership and employees committed to discussing, highlighting and working on issues related to Diversity & Inclusion at Greenhouse. Apart from these groups, there are various other Employee Resource Groups, and Consciousness and Conversation, which is a safe space to chat about anything affecting our daily lives.

Leadership Keeps It Real

Greenhouse promotes a culture of transparency and that starts with our leadership. Our CEO and President host monthly Ask Me Anything meetings where they allow people to anonymously submit pressing questions and concerns. They also discuss the results of our biannual engagement survey during our monthly All Hands meetings. Whether you're an intern or a director, everyone is in the know. Both of these meetings create a productive feedback culture and allow us to build trust internally.

Most importantly, our leadership understands that as a company grows, the culture should too. We’re currently in the process of revamping our values based on company-sourced feedback.

Finally, I know I mentioned that our culture is about much more than the perks, but our ping pong table, lunch & learns, L&D stipends and tasty snacks (shout out to Oh My Green) certainly don’t harm our happiness. From great benefits like flexible PTO and wellness weeks, we recognize the importance of employee satisfaction. We prioritize professional and personal growth, and consistently think about how to keep our values at the forefront of our work.

Through our constantly evolving culture initiatives led by our Inclusion Task Force, Culture Committee, and any other employee who wants to participate, we’re able to be radically inclusive, teach mindfulness and improve overall experiences. I can genuinely say that Greenhouse is a place where employees feel valued, excited about their work and proud to stay.

Thank you to our Office Manager La Laurentop for providing notes for this blog post.


Sound like the culture for you? Come work with us! Check out our openings here.

Micah New Headshot

Micah is the Content & Community Manager at Greenhouse. She was previously an Engagement Strategist at VICE where she worked on consumer brands ranging from ice cream to TV shows. When she's not in the office, she enjoys green parks and NYC rooftops. Keep the conversation growing with Micah on our Greenhouse LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

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