2021 was a challenging year for several reasons but after a year of adapting to change, Hired has been recognized as a finalist and runner-up of the Culturevist Company Culture Awards.
Vettery, a hiring marketplace owned by the Adecco group, acquired Hired.com in 2020. Hired was a competing recruitment platform driven to create the world’s largest AI-driven marketplace and use it to match ambitious talent with the world’s most innovative companies. To achieve this goal, the companies combined the talent, technology, and growing potential of both entities.
Both Hired and Vettery had built powerful AI and people-led platforms to streamline hiring tech and sales talent for innovative companies such as Capital One, Dropbox, Twitch, and thousands more.
Because they overlapped less 5% in existing candidates and subscribing customers, they recognized they had a significant opportunity. By merging the two leading organizations and talent communities they could deepen roles/skills, expand geographically and into new verticals and offer greater expertise in specializations such as remote work.
Despite the enormous uncertainty from COVID-19’s impact, the company retained over 95% of the Hired team.
To move forward, the leadership team decided the best approach for the situation was to lead with culture.
Early on, the team shared intent not to add the acquired company in a win/lose dynamic. The intent was to be a marriage of equals. To demonstrate the intent and provide accountability, they made a series of decisions early and communicated them widely.
· Inviting and encouraging staff at all levels to partake in culture-building and team activities.
· Naming Hired and Vettery people in key roles.
To move fast and purposefully and to ensure the right skills were in place, the team invested in objective, multi-disciplinary, and objective skills to help mediate and move the process along.
The Executive Leadership Team worked with Blitz Solutions, who’d previously assisted with the support during the merger. They collaborated to align on direction before executing a plan for quick integration of strategic, executive, and operational plans. To maintain stakeholder engagement of the parent company, they incorporated support for them too.
As the brand refresh and strategy launched, the Executive Leadership Team tapped Kindred Consulting to think through and support the creation of the aspirational culture. Kindred helped design a program to complement the new brand identity through organizational values and behaviors.
Through a series of sessions and a survey of all teams, the program revealed what the new colleagues felt was possible in a company culture. The sessions helped teammates explore and debate interpretations and corresponding actions to identify the new values together.
Finally, the goal was to create a memorable moment for the Hired team to share as a whole. This collective moment helped everyone have a common experience together and fortify memories and associations.
To meaningfully include team members at every step was a guarantee on the promise to build something teams would embody and live.
The external launch began after a week-long internal celebration with a two-day virtual off-site rallying the company. There they embraced the new mission, vision, and company values. This helped simultaneously align with the new brand.
The offsite gave an opportunity for the team to celebrate the amazing accomplishments of the past and their integration. Then, they officially launched the new brand, followed by an overview of strategic plans for the future.
Each member of the team, regardless of location, enjoyed a gift pack with new branded merchandise. The “present” brought a tangible and unifying facet to the party.
To reinforce the new company values, Hired launched a new company-wide employee recognition program. The #OneTeamOneDream award program presents twice a year and begins with peer nominations before a leadership vote.
To emphasize the transition into the #OneTeamOneDream culture, a Zoom meeting presentation celebrated the two company paths leading to the new Hired. As a surprise, two singers “crashed” the Zoom call. They serenaded the team with tailored lyrics about the accomplishments, personality, and values of the company. The atmosphere truly helped set the tone for the integration of the teams as one.
In September of 2021, the always-evolving Hired announced the release of “Diversity Goals.” To help other companies move toward more equitable hiring, the Diversity Goals solution provides employers of all sizes a simplified process to source and hire underrepresented technical job seekers.
Teams felt inspired by the launch and within a week, the Product and Tech teams adopted the values as a lens for a future company hackathon. This gave participants a way to think through the values and express them in their craft. Management also pulled the values through performance evaluation and goal-setting processes, which provided opportunities to team mates to shape the values in their roles individually and a group.
To lead by example, the Executive Leadership Team demonstrated transparency through bi-weekly All Hands calls. In addition to sharing corporate information, anyone may speak up and ask questions.
Around the one-year anniversary of the official announcement, Hired CEO Josh Brenner said,
“While the business growth we’ve experienced this year has been awesome, the best part has been working alongside a group of such incredibly passionate people who fight to deliver on our vision and live our values everyday. I couldn’t be more proud of what we’ve built together.”
Since the brand re-launch in the spring of 2021, the business continues to thrive. They’ve added additional team members and reached new milestones, such as record highs in talent interview activity on the combined platform.