Customers tell all: The Greenhouse Open experience

Smiling Open conference attendees

5 mins, 18 secs read time

It’s been three years since our last in-person Open Conference at the Javits Center in New York – and this year’s Open Conference was better than ever. Whether you joined us in person or tuned in virtually, it was an eventful two days filled with important and helpful learnings, panel discussions, live workshops – and puppies (yes, puppies!).

We caught up with some of our Open Conference attendees to hear about their experiences and the work they’ve been doing within their Talent and HR teams. Check out some of the key highlights and takeaways from our conversations with Emily Langan of Taboola, Matt Woo of Ontra and Jonathan Ehrlich of Pretium.

1. Why are you attending the Open 2022 Conference?

Emily: My role at Taboola focuses a lot on operational excellence initiatives and many of them are rooted in Greenhouse. I wanted to see what was coming out on the product roadmap for the year so we can plan around it, as well as learn from industry leaders about other topics since the TA space has drastically changed in the last two and a half years.

Matt: My goal is to learn as much as I can and to make my recruiting team better.

Jonathan: I’m here to learn more about Greenhouse’s functionality and product roadmap.

2. What’s the most pressing challenge your Talent team is facing and currently working on to address?

Matt: Getting compensation in order since there’s been so many changes in the past year that impacted how compensation works. A lot of companies have changed the way they do compensation as a result of remote working. For example, some companies benchmark to San Francisco salaries now so we’ve been finding there’s been a lot more competition in markets there wouldn’t have been a year ago. This makes it a bit more difficult to hire and close candidates.

Jonathan: The volume and environment, and being able to properly integrate Greenhouse with Workday to make sure the integrations communicate with each other.

Emily: How we can build DE&I into our current recruiting practices since we’re building this from the ground up. We want to make our hiring practices more inclusive, and being able to track this is one of our biggest focuses for this year. We want to make sure that our team is using all the tools Greenhouse has to offer to make a positive candidate experience and improve our overall time to hire.

Open conference mainstage Jon Stross presentation

3. With today’s talent market more competitive than ever, is there anything your Talent team is doing to ensure you’re providing a unique candidate experience that stands out?

Jonathan: We’re focusing more on human interaction instead of automated emails, which is so important especially in today’s remote and hybrid world.

Emily: Absolutely! Our Engineering team is having pre-close conversations with the hiring managers, aside from conversations with the TA team. This has helped quite a bit with selling the actual opportunity and the growth trajectory, and we found that it really helps us to actually close out roles and get offers accepted.

Matt: We created an offer guide that every candidate who receives an offer gets. That way we can easily break down the details of how our compensation and benefits work. It’s a nice package they receive alongside their offer letter.

4. Is there an emerging recruiting/hiring trend that your Talent team is working on implementing or hopes to implement in the future?

Emily: This year, we drastically increased our parental leave policy so that it’s now a global policy for primary caregivers. It’s 26 weeks now, which is very competitive. We were able to match this for EMEA, which has a very progressive parental leave policy. We were also able to replicate this for the US and Latin America, where there aren’t those parameters and employees have mentioned that it’s a great benefit.

Matt: Something that I’m super excited about is hiring planning. I think recruiting teams are learning that it’s more important to have a plan for the hires they’re going to make throughout the year, and to do it in a strategic, effective and agile way that’s aligned to the business while adapting to changes in the market. I’d love to see some cool tools emerge that can help with this.

Jonathan: It would be the opposite of what we’re doing now, which is more automation in our recruiting process in Greenhouse. We’re definitely using Greenhouse to its full ability. Also, right now we’re fully remote until the end of 2022, moving to flex work starting 2023.

Open conference coworker attendees

5. What Open session or workshop have you enjoyed the most and what key takeaway did you gain from it?

Jonathan: I enjoyed the data science panel session on “Can machine learning in hiring tech be unbiased?” and the diversity recruiting session on “Is everything you’ve been taught about diversity recruiting wrong?”. For the AI one, it’s not about putting out data and saying “This is what our stats show,” it’s more about scrubbing it with quality check processes to ensure there’s not an inherent bias that already exists. On the diversity recruiting side, you can’t just decide you’re going to be diverse and have a diverse workforce. There needs to be more than just recruiting involved in order to attract diverse talent.

Emily: The Greenhouse product roadmap session was super helpful and insightful since we can think about how we use Greenhouse as an ATS, what we should focus on as we align with Greenhouse's product roadmap, and start planning ahead.

Matt: I enjoyed the emotional intelligence keynote by Daniel Goleman. There have also been some great conversations about diversity. I think something that our company should probably be focusing more on is the inclusion piece of things – this seems to be a trend from the folks talking about diversity recruiting. It’s not just about trying to find those categories of people or demographics, it’s actually about creating a place that’s safe, welcoming and inclusive internally to attract the right people.

Want to catch the highlights from Open? Check out some of the key themes and takeaways discussed in keynotes, workshops and panel discussions from recruiting experts.

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