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Blog Interview

Company Spotlight: Greenhouse Software

We’re always on the lookout for companies getting great feedback from their employees. In this feature, we'll profile some of these companies in greater detail.

We spoke with Melissa Suzuno, Content Marketing Manager for Greenhouse, about her company’s culture, opportunities for women, novel approach to salary negotiation, and garden gnomes (yes, you read that right!). Read on for more about this growing company.

Tell us a little more about Greenhouse.

Founded in 2012, with offices in New York City and San Francisco, Greenhouse has about 200 employees and 30% of our most senior-level positions are held by women.

The Greenhouse brand sits at the intersection of people, data, and design. We design tools for people who are growing great companies. Our philosophy is to empower people with the best practices and data needed to build both a great business and a great place to work. Companies use Greenhouse to optimize how they find, interview, hire, and onboard the best talent.

What is Greenhouse’s mission?

Our company was founded on the idea of giving people the power to build better companies.

What are your company’s core values?

Authentic, Inclusive & Open-minded, Collaborative, Effective, Customer-Focused, and Ambitious

How do you integrate company values into your daily work?

Integrating company values into my daily work feels really natural to me, I think because all of our values are intuitive and promote a positive and effective work environment. For example, I love collaborating with my teammates within marketing and from other teams and this is something that my manager has encouraged me to do from my first day at Greenhouse.

We also have a fun tradition here at Greenhouse that helps recognize people who exemplify the company values. In each of our offices, there’s a small army of mini garden gnomes, and each one is associated with a particular company value. Every week, the gnomes find their way onto different people’s desks with a little note explaining why that particular person has embodied that particular value. This is a fun way to give a little recognition to our coworkers on a regular basis so they know that their hard work is appreciated.

We also use Greenhouse Onboarding to send little notes of recognition. The person you’re recognizing gets an email notification and your note is automatically shared with everyone at the company via our “General” channel in Slack. It’s a fun and easy way to welcome new coworkers, thank someone for helping you, or congratulate a person or team for their success.

How would you describe your company’s culture?

It’s fun and flexible — it’s the kind of place where you can leave early to make it to a hot yoga class or bring your child to the office on a Friday afternoon — but also full of people who are committed to their work and very motivated to be thought leaders within their respective fields.

It’s empowering — Greenhouse has a culture of empowering employees to do the best work of their careers. For example, if you’re interested in building your personal brand during your time at Greenhouse, you’re encouraged to seek out opportunities for speaking, writing, or hosting events. And the company will support you in those pursuits, whether it’s collaborating on a proposal to speak at a conference, finding an outlet for your blog post, or providing a venue for an event.

It values authenticity — people are encouraged to be themselves. We’re not all exactly alike and that’s a good thing. Our varied backgrounds and skills complement each other.

What is it about your work environment that makes it feel like a supportive place for women?

For a lot of roles, we have flexible working hours, the ability to work from home from time to time, and a generous parental leave and perks program .

And beyond that, the way the company hires and promotes employees feels equitable and fair. In general, we don’t negotiate on salaries. We believe that negotiating only benefits a strong negotiator, so the outcome of negotiation doesn’t end up reflecting the value an individual will bring to an organization. We looked at many reports that showed that negotiation tends to promote the wage gap between men and women, so instead of letting salaries be determined by negotiation, we use market data to lead with a strong offer that we think is fair. We’ve found that candidates and internal employees are really excited about this approach.

Similarly, most departments have career ladders in place with clear criteria defining each step. This means that decisions around promotions are much more objective and straightforward. This approach can benefit women in particular since they may not be as likely to raise their hands for promotions.

Does your company have executive level support for diversity initiatives?

Yes, diversity is something our CEO has been giving a lot of thought to. He’s recently shared his thoughts in these blog posts: 4 Traps That Are Holding Back Your Company’s Diversity Recruiting and 4 Simple Ways to Increase Your Company’s Diversity .

What would you tell prospective female employees about why your company is a great place to work?

We have so many women in leadership roles who are doing amazing things and shaping the way our company works. In addition to our VPs of Marketing and People & Strategy, our Design, Customer Success, Talent Acquisition, People, Demand Generation, Product Marketing, Legal, and some SDR teams are led by women, and many other female employees are spearheading some impressive projects. Elena Washington is a founding member of the Tech Yes! Meetup (promoting diversity in tech companies) in New York and Allison Slater is launching the San Francisco chapter. Suzanne Holloway also launched the Talent Ops Meetup which gathers thought leaders in the talent industry in San Francisco.

If you have a professional goal, whether it’s publishing, public speaking, or event production, there’s a very good chance that you’ll be able to pursue it while at Greenhouse, even if it’s not exactly part of your everyday responsibilities. This is definitely a place where women are empowered to launch and lead projects!

Get more of the inside scoop from the women working at Greenhouse on the Greenhouse InHerSight page .

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