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How to Lean Into Hiring with Lever

Five years ago, Sheryl Sandberg published her bestseller, Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead. Since then, her book has inspired millions of women to achieve their ambitions and overcome workplace inequalities through its practical advice and wisdom.

But the book doesn’t stand alone. Following its launch in 2013, Sheryl Sandberg founded a nonprofit to carry on the conversation and expand the movement. The Sheryl Sandberg & Dave Goldberg Family Foundation (formerly known as LeanIn.Org) helps women achieve their ambitions and works to build a more equal and resilient world. Lean In offers inspiration and support through an online community, free education materials, and Lean In Circles, small groups of peers who meet regularly to learn and grow together.

With such an important mission at hand, hiring the best talent has been critical for the organization. So how do they recruit strong candidates who can push their initiatives forward? To find out, we sat down with VP of Product & PeopleOps, Raena Saddler.

Here’s how The Sheryl Sandberg and Dave Goldberg Family Foundation has used Lever to grow from an 8-10 person foundation to a team of 30+ talented people.

Making diversity and inclusion a priority from the start

The Sheryl Sandberg & Dave Goldberg Family Foundation is proud to be building an inclusive organization, where about half of their current staff are people of color. In taking on People Operations, Raena made diversity and inclusion a culture cornerstone from day one, so the organization knew it needed an applicant tracking system that could support their D&I strategy from the get-go.

“The best thing about Lever is the ability to manage candidate experience, D&I, and employee engagement all in one place while hiring the best talent,” says Raena. “One of our key goals is to source people from different backgrounds that have the experience we need for the role, drawing from a wide span of professional experience.”

The organization uses Lever’s tools for proactively sourcing a diverse talent pool. To see where they’re at with their goals, the team also uses Lever’s EEO diversity surveys for a complete picture of their results. The better tracking in place, the easier it is to spot trends and identify any places where bias might be at play in your hiring process.

[Related: Cultivating Diversity and Inclusion in the Workplace]

Streamlining processes to reduce manual tasks

Hiring top talent is a driving force for any company. At The Sheryl Sandberg & Dave Goldberg Family Foundation, the team is always on the lookout for strong candidates who can build on their mission, widen brand recognition, and implement strong programs that might not otherwise get accomplished.

“The main success with Lever has been to organize and streamline our work, removing the manual tasks of hiring through spreadsheets, docs, and emails, and seamlessly including hiring managers in filling roles,” says Raena.

The switch to Lever has helped the organization see a significant increase in hiring productivity, with a 40% reduction in the amount of time hiring teams spend on the overall hiring process. And hiring managers are now more involved, with a 100% adoption and engagement rate in reviewing and moving candidates through the hiring process.

[Related: 7 Conversations You Should Initiate with Every Hiring Manager]

Looking ahead to the future

Since its launch in 2013, The Sheryl Sandberg & Dave Goldberg Family Foundation has grown the number of Lean In Circles to over 40,000 in 170+ countries. The organization’s public awareness work continues to challenge how we think about gender and diversity with annual campaigns and their yearly Women in the Workplace study.

But they are just getting started. And with Lever, they have the talent acquisition partner they need to continue hiring brilliant people, from all walks of life, who will move their mission forward.

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