When I first started working at Phenom People, we had approximately 150 employees company-wide. Our hiring in 2017 didn’t slow down with roughly two new people joining the company per week.
Fast forward to today, and we have over 270 employees with even more ambitious hiring goals for 2018. As a result of our high growth and hiring needs, we brought on Keca Ward, our Director of Talent Acquisition.
Just last week, I had the opportunity to sit down with Keca to learn about her journey, background, the amazing things she’s already implemented at Phenom People, and the phenomenal plans she has in store for improving candidate experience at the company.
Q: How did you get into Talent Acquisition and HR originally?
A: Immediately after college, I landed a sales role at Verizon. After spending about six years there, I joined a staffing company doing business development and sales. This was my first taste in the staffing and recruiting world. During my time there, I met a colleague and we began to discuss starting a recruiting business. We did a lot of research on the market, and decided to launch our own niche IT staffing company focused on application development for the tri-state area. It was so successful that it was bought out by a large national firm in Harrisburg after six years.
Once the company sold, I did a good amount of consulting and speaking engagements for the next three years. At the same time, I had a huge passion to explore the HR world and landed a contract role at Sunguard that turned full-time after a few months. Before joining Phenom People, I worked for Sunguard, finished my Master’s at Villanova, and applied it to learning a tremendous amount about all the HR functions from the other side of the desk.
Q: How did you hear about Phenom People?
A: I actually interviewed at Phenom People about a year before I decided to join the company. I met with Brad, Head of People, and was so intrigued with the company and the product. I felt so passionate after leaving the interview. Coming from the IT staffing world for so long coupled with my passion for candidate experience, I fell in love with the idea of working in the HR tech space. At the time of the interview, it wasn’t the right timing, but after seeing the tremendous growth the company experienced over the next year, there was finally an opportunity to join Phenom People.
Q: What made you decide to join Phenom People?
A: There are a couple of compelling reasons behind my decision to join Phenom People: visionary leadership and a culture where employees are truly valued. I had the opportunity to interview Phenom People just as much as they interviewed me. Nothing else truly mattered to me aside from the culture and leadership. I wanted autonomy at work, the ability to share ideas and have them embraced, and I knew I could do that here. Once I came in the door, the culture and visionary leadership matched what I felt in the interview, and that doesn’t always happen.
Q: What excited you about Phenom People’s product suite?
A: In my first couple of weeks, I was already using the Candidate Pipeline. Once I got used to it and realized it was a powerful tool, it was exciting to utilize for Phenom People’s recruiting efforts. The coolest feature is the ability to see career site visitors and passive talent before they even decide to apply for an opportunity. When you think of TA leaders, you think about how you’re a service to the organization. If a supervisor comes in, you can use that passive talent pool to help provide updates on a search.
In addition, the real-time data helps with tracking time-to-fill. Plus, I’m really excited about using internal mobility and the other tools coming to fruition in the near future. I’m already a full evangelist of the technology, first as a customer and then as an internal power user.
Q: What are you planning to put into place for 2018?
A: We already have a good vision for this year. Of course, there will be more high growth, and we will be working to improve the candidate interviewing experience. We preach positive candidate experience every day to our clients, and it’s something we want to fully embody. We’ve already implemented a few initiatives: personalized welcome messages on our digital board, texting directions, and video offer letters.
There’s more exciting improvements on the horizon including fun icebreakers for interviewers that include interactive job interview games and game simulation. We want it to feel like a red carpet experience when you interview here at Phenom People.
If you’re interested in exploring opportunities with Phenom People, don’t hesitate to reach out to Keca directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also check out our current opportunities by visiting https://careers.phenompeople.com/us/en