Access and Ownership

janie howell, b.b.a.'04

Less red tape. Yes, please.

Access is one of the important features of the culture at CloudCraze, a business-to-business e-commerce platform, which is built natively on Salesforce and was acquired by Salesforce in spring 2018.

Janie Howell, talent acquisition manager for the company, rates the access to company decision makers and a collaborative work environment as two elements that attract employees to CloudCraze.

“We don’t have a lot of red tape; all of our executives are available on a regular basis,” says Howell. “Know a more effective way to do something than our current practice? Raise your hand and share it! We live by a culture of contribution that encourages all employees to own our company’s success, and we value and reward employees who look beyond their specific roles in order to continually advance the company.”

CloudCraze’s culture results in an organization that is as innovative as it is agile.

“Culture is extremely important, especially at a high-growth company like CloudCraze because every hire is highly visible within the organization,” she notes.

Howell is on the front lines for articulating the company’s values by supporting recruitment of new employees, onboarding and orientation for new hires, and training programs for employees’ individual roles.

Overseeing hiring activities allows Howell another sort of access. Access to job seekers and what they are looking for from their company and career.

Here are some of her recent takeaways:

  • Many new hires are very interested in how a company gives back to the community. A commitment to social responsibility and connection to nonprofit organizations are important to potential employees. In that social commitment, job candidates want to see how the company’s priorities in terms of social responsibility align with their own personal values.
  • New hires are increasingly interested in understanding work-life balance. Happiness at work, stress reduction and a focus on life outside of work factor into job seekers decisions on where to work.
  • Working remotely is attractive to employees. The ability to work remotely allows employees to be freed up geographically and is an opportunity for companies to draw in the best of the best in their industry. If your infrastructure and culture support telecommuting, it can boost productivity and be a major selling point for potential job candidates.

Leading by example is important to Howell as she does her part to contribute to CloudCraze’s culture and set the tone for new employees. “I put a lot of hard work into my projects,” she says. “I like the fact that I can look around our company and see work ethic and commitment in every employee’s work.”

Howell has helped to build ccElevate, the company’s women’s networking initiative, which is focused on supporting a culture of diversity and inclusion and an environment for learning and growth. In 2017, ccElevate had its first annual Mentorship Day and Career Challenge where CloudCraze invited college-aged women interested in careers in the tech and software space to the firm for a day that included business case presentations and a question-and-answer session with leaders from within the organization.

“There is always something new on the horizon for both our employees and customers at CloudCraze,” says Howell. “That is what makes work fun.”