3247Man walks with son wearing Indeed swagIndeedian Stories

Top 5 stories of 2020 inside Indeed

Take a trip down memory lane with us as we recap a year like no other.
Author looks out over the Grand Canyon

Joey Jackson, #insideindeed Global Content Strategist

Looking back at the 5 most impactful stories of 2020 from inside Indeed

Joey Jackson is a Global Content Strategist for inside Indeed and Co-Managing Editor of the Inside Indeed culture blog. In his almost 5 years at Indeed, he’s had the pleasure of interviewing more than 400 Indeedians on video and helped tell the story of countless more on #insideindeed social media channels, podcasts and blogs. He’s a former journalist with a passion for storytelling of all kinds and can’t wait to belt out some karaoke tunes when it’s safe again in 2021.

“My life feels like a test I didn’t study for” – unknown

This quote pretty much sums up my feelings about 2020.

Trying to grasp the impact of this year and summarize it into a single blog post is like reading a book in a language you don’t speak and then trying to do a book report on it.

While it will take many years to truly grasp what 2020 meant to each of us, we can reflect on where we are and what we’ve learned in this moment.

One thing I can say for certain though is I’ve never been more proud to be an Indeedian. 

Through strong leadership and a powerful purpose, Indeed has been able to adapt, learn and grow from our adversity and put our helpful spirit to work like never before.

The stories below are just the tip of the iceberg, but they show what can be accomplished when you have 10,000 passionate people — including a leadership team that approaches challenges with transparency, humility and humanity — coming together each day, no matter where they’re working and what obstacles they’re facing, to fulfill a common purpose. 

Take a trip down memory lane with me as I recap the top 5 stories from life inside Indeed in a year like no other.

#1 Indeed leads the way in Working from Home

Paul Wolfe working from home with dogs

SVP of HR, Paul Wolfe with his furry assistants

On March 4th, 2020, Indeed was one of the first companies to shut down all of our offices globally due to COVID-19. Many thought this was an overreaction at the time, but our leadership team made the conscious decision to put the safety of employees above all else. 

It was quite an undertaking that required a lot of long hours and collaboration between many teams across the globe. Senior Vice President of Human Resources, Paul Wolfe, led the way, often having to adapt plans hour by hour and day by day in the early days of the pandemic. In this ever-changing landscape, Paul knew communication and transparency would be key to keeping people calm and up to date.

“We needed to be as transparent as possible, as it’s not only impacting the business but also impacting people’s lives… and that’s a scary thing,” Paul explains.

Man at his desk working from homeSince then, we have been adapting to life at home. Our IT team sprung into action to ensure we had all of the technical resources and infrastructure in place to function remotely, and leadership even decided to give out $500 (or local currency equivalent) stipends for Indeedians to spruce up their work-from-home environments.

Over the last nine months, we’ve learned to embrace the everyday surprises of virtual meetings. Random cameos from family members and pets have become the norm and allowed us to get to know each other in unexpected ways. 

On our best days, this experience has taught us to be more patient and appreciative and to embrace the unexpected blending of work and life.

“This whole pandemic, for companies and people… you truly see people and their core when they are dealing with a crisis. You have a deeper appreciation of people around you,” Paul says.

The key for Indeed has been to create a culture of flexibility and trust.

“My working hours are broken up so I can spend time with the little ones,” National Account Manager and father of 5, Stuart explains. “By this, I mean being submerged in the pool, being the bad guy in Cops and Robbers and being the hero after creating a Slip ‘N Slide in the yard.”

#2 Solidifying our commitment to Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging

A global pandemic was not the only major issue we faced in 2020. A history of racial injustice is not new, but it bubbled to the surface in a major way this year. The Black Lives Matter movement became a powerful voice in this cause, prompting many companies to finally acknowledge and address systemic racism and inequality.

Man poses in Black Lives Matter jersey

Julian sports his #BlackLivesMatter jersey

Our CEO, Chris Hyams, made clear where we stand on this issue and addressed a unique opportunity Indeed has to make an impact through our mission.

“Inclusion and Belonging is one of Indeed’s five Core Values. We have been working for years to raise awareness, grow allyship, and create an open and supportive environment for all employees. We do this because it makes Indeed a better place to work. But the most important motivation is that our mission is to help people get jobs. Economic opportunity — access to jobs — is core to the fight against racism, injustice, and inequity. The more Indeed represents the world around us, the better we are at helping all people get jobs.” 

Through our partnership with German Football club, Eintracht Frankfurt, we were able to display our support for #BlackLivesMatter on the team’s jerseys. By popular demand, the jerseys became available to Indeedians around the world.

Access Indeed Inclusion Resource Group

Access Indeed Inclusion Resource Group

Indeed also made a concrete commitment to accessibility this year, to be a more inclusive product and workplace for those with disabilities. Product teams consulted with members of our Access Indeed Inclusion Resource Group (IRG) to better understand the challenges of communities facing barriers in the job search process and we took concrete steps to improve accessibility in our products and communication.

In addition, we launched a new Parents and Caregivers IRG to create a community for those who are facing the challenges of caring for kids and family members all day while working from home. This became even more difficult as parents adapted to the role of teacher, as well as trying to keep up with their daily work schedule. The group allowed them to share tips, activities and even some humorous stories to relieve some stress in this demanding new role. 

Our employee-led Inclusion Resource Groups have been invaluable collaborators, leading virtual panel discussions and hosting guest speakers to help Indeedians dealing with a number of issues related to racism and injustice such as xenophobia in the Asian community, stress and anxiety in the Black community and being a better ally.

The work on all fronts with regards to Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging is never complete. We know there is still a lot of work to do, but I have witnessed much of the work first hand and am incredibly proud of the progress we’ve made in spite of all the other challenges we faced this year.

#3 YOU Day

Indeedian gives peace sign while celebrating YOU DayIt started with a question in a Q&A session and led to a global holiday each month for all Indeedians. We deemed it YOU Day and it has shown Indeed’s dedication to putting the well-being of its employees first.

SVP of HR, Paul Wolfe, recognized the difference between our current working situation and a normal remote job early on.

“We’re not in a normal working-from-home situation. We are in the midst of a pandemic and trying to work at the same time. This is not a normal WFH experience.”

Indeed’s leadership realized many people weren’t taking the proper time to get away from work as the lines between work and life became blurred in the early days of the pandemic.

The solution was a shared global holiday where everyone was able to unplug at the same time. Check out the results in the video below.

#4 Defining our 5 core values

In 2004, Indeed changed the way people get jobs with a new approach. They built a job search product that put the job seeker first. This approach has allowed Indeed to become the preferred job site for millions around the world.

This year, we expanded on this core principle, defining four more values that will guide us in our mission to help people get jobs long into the future. If you want to know what Indeed stands for, look no further than the values below.

Value #1: Job seeker first

This is the one that started it all.

CEO Chris Hyams explains, “If there is a job out there, it needs to be on Indeed. If there is a job on Indeed, it needs to be from a real employer who is actively hiring right now. We need to know everything we can about every job and every job seeker to create the best match possible.”

Value #2: Pay per performance

This is how we make our money and our approach is simple. General Manager of Enterprise, Maggie Hulce sums it up.

“We want to get paid when we deliver value and we don’t want to get paid when we don’t.”

Value #3: Innovation

With new competitors popping up all the time, constant innovation is essential for our survival. To us, it’s about not being afraid to fail. 

“Innovation is about trying lots of risky things with high probabilities of failure, but when they succeed, the payoff is one hundred or a thousand fold,” says Senior Product Director, Brendan Stern.

Value #4: Data Driven

Data is the great equalizer as COO, Dave O’Neill, explains, “We all have ideas, some of which we think are great, some of which prove not to be great, and I think it teaches us to be humble in our approach to problem solving and let the results speak for themselves.”

Value #5: Inclusion & Belonging

This has already been touched on, but it cannot be overstated how important it is to delivering on our job seeker first principle. 

“The reason why I came to Indeed is to impact the world by helping people get jobs. I fundamentally believe that is life changing,” says Vice President of Diversity, Inclusion & Belonging, LaFawn Davis.

“We can accomplish this by removing bias and barriers, and that means making sure that our workforce reflects the diversity of communities where we operate, making sure we have an unbiased recruiting process, continuing our commitment to equal pay and promotion opportunities, removing barriers to entry by hiring people with nontraditional backgrounds and helping other companies do the same.”

Read more about our values impact the work we do everyday

#5 Gratitude

Finally, in reviewing the long, strange journey that was 2020 inside Indeed, the theme that keeps jumping out to me is gratitude. 

Indeedian meditates outsideWe’ve been able to work on products such as our Virtual Interview Platform that have allowed job seekers to find work quickly and safely. Our Employee Experience team has supported us with events and activities that make us feel connected even when we’re far away, and for our holiday gift, we were given money to donate to the causes we care about, helping others in a time of need. 

I am so proud to see my co-workers share stories of how lucky they feel to not only have a job, but have one where we are listened to and allowed to be human as we struggle to deal with the unique challenges around us. Seeing these stories and thinking about all we’ve been through has humbled me and ignited my own sense of gratitude.

I am grateful for those who were generous enough to share their stories, allowing me and others to see ourselves in your struggle and success. I am grateful for the courage, compassion and creativity that has been an example to me and others through a year of constant learning. Most of all, I’m grateful to work with talented people who appreciate how lucky we are to have each other and a common purpose that unites us.

Happy 2021 from all of us #insideindeed!

Hear more reflections from Indeedians and why they feel optimistic for the future in the video below.

Read more on our Inside Indeed culture blog.

Looking for a new job in the new year? Come work at Indeed! Apply here.

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3128Perks & Benefits

Holiday Rewind: Celebrating 2020 inside Indeed

As the holiday season approaches, take a look at what an eventful journey it has been for us at Indeed in 2020...

As the holiday season approaches, we wanted to take this opportunity to reflect on what an eventful journey it has been in 2020, and highlight our celebrations throughout the year at Indeed.

Indeedians at a Martin Luther King, Jr. parade in Austin, Texas

At the beginning of the year, we were fortunate enough to celebrate several occasions together, in and out of the office. One of the highlights in the first quarter was when Indeedians across the U.S. came together to celebrate and honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. on January 20. 

Our team from the Black Inclusion Group organized various events across the US to show respect through live discussions, including a march in Austin, Texas (pictured above). 

Lunar New Year celebration

We also celebrated various festive events across our offices, including Lunar New Year. During this celebration, the Asian Network led and planned various activities such as lion dance events, happy hours and dumpling making sessions to name a few. 

In addition to that, we also celebrated other events in the beginning of the year such as Pongal and Australia Day, where we were able to get together and create special experiences with one another. We truly miss celebrating together!

Lunar New Year celebration at Indeed

While we were able to spend most of the first quarter of the year celebrating at the office, the pandemic then hit us, and to prioritize the health and safety of Indeedians, Indeed moved its entire workforce to work from home towards the end of the first quarter. 

Read more: Find out how some of us are coping working remotely. 

For the rest of the year, we celebrated events virtually. From Eid, Pride Month, Juneteenth, Veterans Day, Diwali, Halloween and Thanksgiving to other locally celebrated events, we shared our stories through virtual events, social media, virtual happy hours and sharing through our internal platforms. 

“I may not be able to celebrate Pride the way I would prefer this year but a cool silver lining came out of Indeed’s Virtual Pride – not only were we able to access international Pride events online but everyone was in the exact same virtual situation,” Radissen Ramoutar, a member of Indeed’s iPride resource group in Toronto, says. 

“This meant that we could all connect and have the same experience without feeling like you’re staring through a window into another person’s house. We all got to be in the same ‘virtual’ house together.” 

Celebrating Diwali via Zoom

This year has been unexpected and challenging, but we’ve taken huge strides together. While the pandemic has created greater barriers between us, we’ve learnt to get better at staying connected and being grateful for the little things. 

Indeedians are a creative bunch, and the silver lining of not being able to meet in person was the ability to connect over shared passions! 

In addition to helping people get jobs, Indeedians connected over health tips, designing their workspace, music and their passion for food (and talent for being culinary artists) through mouth-watering recipes! We even published our very own cookbook… a blend of simple everyday meals whipped up by our very own Indeedians across the globe. 

“We hope these delicious creations will inspire employees and will be recreated in kitchens across the globe,” Dublin Office Manager, Brona Crinion explains. “No matter what circumstances we are facing, togetherness is always at the forefront of our agenda.”

There were also numerous online health, wellness and fun programs organized by the Employee Experience team such as yoga, kickboxing, dance, HIIT, meditation and many more!

As we round up our celebrations for the year, everything from shared passions, differences, festive events, career milestones and wins (both big and small), we’re thankful to be able to give back this season as Indeed gifts us the gift of giving. 

All employees at Indeed were gifted $200 to donate to their charity of choice through our GoodDeeds program. Whether their passion is feeding the hungry, helping the homeless, caring for stray animals, literacy or any other of hundreds of meaningful causes, Indeedians get to pick their charity (or charities) to give to this season.  

However you choose to spend your holiday this year, we’d like to wish everyone a safe holiday and a better year ahead!

To stay up to date with all the celebrations and activities Indeedians around the world participate in, follow us on @insideindeed.

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3194Career Growth

Two internships and three years on: Leading a Software Engineering team in Hyderabad

Vidhem Chhabra shares some of the misconceptions about his role as a Staff Software Engineer working #insideindeed Hyderabad and gives us insights into his world on the Indeed Apply team.

Headshot of authorVidhem Chhabra graduated with an Integrated Masters in Mathematics and Computer Science from IIT (Indian Institute of Technology) in Delhi. He had his first (and second) experience with Indeed as an intern, and later joined as a new graduate. He then grew his career with Indeed and is now overseeing a team as a Staff Software Engineer at Indeed Hyderabad.

Today, there are so many tech companies for Software Engineers to choose from to grow their career. 

If working on global products at scale gets you excited, or if you would like to find out what it’s like working at Indeed Hyderabad, you may want to listen in on this episode of our Culture Matters podcast.

Vidhem shares why he chose to join Indeed, walks us through how he has grown in his career and gives us insights into his world as a Staff Software Engineer on the Indeed Apply team.

Vidhem and team clowning around at an Indeed event

He explains one of the reasons for joining Indeed was because of the incredibly positive internship experience he had with Indeed. “The level of ownership that I had during my internship was pretty unheard of! I also spoke to other peers who interned at different companies… The kind of work I did during my internship really made an impact in the real world and truly made a difference in the lives of jobseekers,” Vidhem shares.

Vidhem also talks about some of the misconceptions about his role and working at Indeed. One of the misconceptions he shares is that Engineers based in India do not work on significant or critical products as compared to the rest of the company. 

Vidhem's team at Indeed

“That is a very big misconception. We get to build and own software that helps people all over the world get jobs. The level of impact that we make out of Hyderabad is as significant as any other location. It’s a world class engineering office and we have top notch engineering talent working on those products,” Vidhem mentions.

In his conversation with Inside Indeed, he continues to share more about the Indeed Apply product, the challenges he faces in his role and also provides tips as an interviewer at Indeed.

To find out more about Vidhem’s experience and advice, listen in on this episode of our Culture Matters podcast.

To find out more about jobs at Indeed Hyderabad, click here.
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3173Gregg in oil fields of TexasEngineering

From the oil field to Indeed: How I Became A…Search Quality Strategist

Search Quality Strategist, Gregg Stephens, shares his unlikely career journey from searching for oil and gas in Texas to helping candidates search for jobs on Indeed.
Gregg playing guitar

Gregg showing off his guitar skills

Gregg Stephens is a Search Quality Strategist in Search Quality (known internally as SQUALL), the team that helps ensure the job search experience on Indeed is relevant and of high quality to both the candidate and employer. He’s an avid traveler and awards points hacker, using points to travel the world.

In this installment of “How I Became A…”, Gregg shares his unlikely career journey from searching for oil and gas fields to helping candidates search for jobs on Indeed and how he’s continuing to learn and develop his career.

Gregg’s background makes him a modern-day renaissance man, having worked as an EMT in high school, taught scuba diving while earning a double major in Journalism and Geological Sciences from Ohio University, only to use his degrees to play as a classically trained finger-style guitarist. 

He eventually worked his way back into oil and gas exploration before taking some time off to research geochemistry and earthquakes for the State of Texas and eventually joining Indeed in May 2018. So just how does a person with Gregg’s skillset end up at Indeed?

A career as a geologist on the rocks 

In the spring of 2018, Gregg was a geologist looking to leave the top geoscience research institute in the world, with his resume detailing exactly how technical and data-heavy his work experience was. 200 job applications later without one single interview, he was stuck. Confident that he could do the job, but unable to even compete for it. His own miscalculation?

Gregg in the Oil Fields

Working in the oil & gas fields of Texas

“I assumed recruiters saw geoscience data the same as tech data. A conceptual truth, but I missed the mark thinking that everyone saw the interchangeable skills that I saw,” Gregg said.

“I had all the confidence in the world that I could be a major contributor in tech, but it meant nothing without someone on the inside knowing what I knew how to do as well. There is no substitute for networking, and the best time to start is yesterday.”

He finally broke into tech when his now-wife made a post on Indeed’s internal social media page asking for advice on his behalf. 

Ironically, It was seen by a fellow geologist who was looking to return to geology. Shortly after they forged their relationship, he broke his interview drought and interviewed with his future boss, and the rest, as they say, is history. 

Picking up pebbles of information along your journey

Gregg and Ash at an Indeed Holiday Party

Gregg and his wife Ash (also an Indeedian!)

While his journey to Indeed may be unconventional, the skills he picked up along the way have helped him tremendously in his role here at Indeed. He’s a product strategist, specializing in personalized advertising, so he needs to know jobseekers better than they know themselves.

He helps ensure that the ads and emails we deliver are relevant, high quality, and bring you back to Indeed. 

This isn’t an easy task; on any given day, he looks at hundreds of thousands of data points in the past to a) figure out why individuals engaged the way they did, and then b) use that to predict what they’ll want to see tomorrow.  

How does a background in geological sciences and journalism help with anything to do with job seekers?

“I’m a staunch proponent of three-dimensional thinking. SQL and python skills are great for mapping data, but the mapping concepts make more sense when I’ve also reverse-engineered outcrops by tying X-ray fluorescence & spectral gamma-ray signatures into spatially-adjacent drilling logs,” Gregg shared. 

“Geology isn’t the roadside outcrop you’re looking at; it’s the physical, mathematical, and three-dimensional possibilities through time. It’s creating hypotheses from the probability of each outcome. It’s testing, learning, and adjusting to what works – exactly like my job here at Indeed.”

Be boulder and ask for help.

Gregg didn’t get to where he is now all on his own, and says that one of the best resources in professional development is a mentor. 

Gregg poses outside an Indeed office in Austin

Gregg poses outside an Indeed office in Austin

“My mentor is not just someone who I can learn from as they grow; by speaking up and stating what I wanted to accomplish, my mentor was able to help mold my work philosophy into a leadership philosophy,” he said. “That knowledge, support, and belief in my aspirations to grow and manage that business is why I’m currently earning my MBA through Boston University’s Questrom School of Business.”

That said, working with some of the brightest minds is also an invaluable resource.

“There’s no better way to perform at the top of your game than to work with people whose brain power constantly pushes you to your limits,” Gregg shared. “Between my team, the product managers we support, commercialization, and operational leadership, there are no off-days. I have to bring my A-game every day because the standard of performance is simply that high.”

Don’t take hard work for granite

Lastly, and he cannot stress this enough, being dedicated to your craft is an absolute must. 

“Being obsessive about my work is the passport that’s allowed me to move between industries. Prior to academia, my standard workweek was 96 hours on a drilling rig. This was great to capitalize on my ‘normal,’ which was how I became a published scientific author at the University of Texas in one year with no prior research experience,” he says.

“You don’t need to work 100 hours a week, but the opportunities that arose from always being the hardest worker in the office are how I get here today.”

Gregg working by the pool

Work hard, play hard.

The most rewarding aspect of his job is the jobseeker feedback and knowing someone has found employment via Indeed.com. 

I don’t say that lightly; we must have jobseekers critique our work. Alternatively, there’s no better motivation to get better than ‘Gregg, you missed the mark’. When the bar is set so high, there’s no better way to improve than to check your work against the real thing. Feedback gives us the ability to invest in our successes and fix our shortcomings.”

Read more Indeedian stories on our #insideindeed culture blog.

 

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3162Career Growth

One year and counting: From fresh grad to software engineer at Indeed

Join Jiayee Lim, a software engineer based in Indeed Singapore, as she reflects on her first year at Indeed.

Jiayee Lim, a software engineer based in Indeed Singapore, reflects on her first year at Indeed.

It has been a year since I joined my first team at Indeed. I am now a software engineer in the International Employer Engagement team, helping employers help people get jobs! But when I started at Indeed a year ago, I joined through the New College Graduate (NCG) program in Singapore.

I’m doing great now but my first few months at Indeed sure wasn’t a walk in the park. 

Jiayee’s set up on her first day at the Indeed office

There are many clever development tools and integrations at Indeed, and it took me a while to gain sufficient exposure to them. I am still learning about them now as we speak. In addition, both my team and teammates were new.

Read more: New college graduate bootcamp; Building products the Indeed way

In our first few months at Indeed, we had to deliver our products while learning how to work together and establishing team processes which can optimise our productivity.

We also had to familiarise ourselves with the various support teams in Indeed so that we can focus more on our products. It wasn’t easy but we made it.

Jiayee with the International Employer Engagement team

Some of our notable projects included automating personalised email marketing campaigns through data pipelines and accelerating the localisation of emails through my team’s email localisation manager platform.

Our next challenge is to remove ourselves from the data pipeline by enabling marketers and product analysts to build and run personalised campaigns through a user interface. My team and I are motivated to make personalisation of experiences for customers accessible to Indeedians.

 

A unique hosting opportunity

In addition to my duties as a software engineer, I am now also a host of ‘Demos, Demos Demos’ – or Demos^3 for short – for the Singapore office.

Plate of homemade tacos

In a nutshell, Demos^3 is a platform for knowledge sharing which is open to all Indeedians… anyone can share anything they have learned or find interesting and want to share. Past presentations ranged from demonstrating prototypes, running through product decks, code deep dives to saving money on electricity and even a live cooking demonstration on how to make tortillas.

Currently, with all Indeedians working from home, we have been hosting a joint Demos^3 with the Hyderabad, Singapore and Tokyo offices.

It has been an enjoyable experience as we now get to see a greater variety of demos and we get to understand what Indeedians from the other offices have been working on.

Although there are more participants to manage, we also have more hosts from the different offices so when one of us is unavailable, someone else can take over.

Adapting to becoming a full time engineer

I believe that the skills I honed while in college and my past internship experiences were key to helping me learn and adapt to the work at Indeed. 

In college, I was expected to take charge of our learning so I had to be independent and resourceful; during my internships, I learnt to communicate with my team and work together to deliver software products. To me, both of these experiences have helped me with my role at Indeed.

The past year of working at Indeed is rewarding, as I get to ease people’s (job seekers, employers and even Indeedians!) lives through technology, get involved with activities and initiatives in my office (e.g. Demos^3, Hackathon, etc.) and am recognised for my contributions.

Participants of Indeed’s virtual Summer Hackathon 2020

Looking forward, in my next year with Indeed, I hope to be one of the main driving forces in bringing my team’s projects to fruition, benefitting Indeedians and employers who hire through Indeed.

For any young engineers or fresh graduates looking to join the industry, my biggest piece of advice for them is to stay motivated, strive to improve and to always pursue their passion. It is important to derive meaning and satisfaction from a job so that we are more than willing to deliver our best and grow to become better employees and contributors to society.

To learn more about our Engineering work, click here, and you can find our University blog here. Interested to find out more about Indeed Singapore? We’ve got you covered.

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