Employee Spotlight: 12 Questions with Jean McCauley, Senior Recruiter
In this month’s employee spotlight, we’re highlighting our expert recruiter and professional pelotoner, Jean McCauley. We sat down with Jean to discuss what she loves about working at Verikai, what she looks for in a candidate, and even reveals the one thing she could not live without if she were stranded on a deserted island.
We’re so lucky to have Jean at Verikai because, in reality, many of us would not be here without her! She has a gift for finding the best talent and we’re fortunate to have her to continue to enhance Verikai’s unmatched company culture.
- How long have you worked at Verikai?
I started at Verikai about 6 months ago, in August 2021.
2. Where did you grow up, and where are you based now?
I grew up in the suburbs of Philadelphia, and now I’m based in Scottsdale, Arizona.
3. Tell us a bit more about what your day-to-day is like as a senior recruiter at Verikai. How is your role at Verikai different than other places you’ve worked?
Every day is a bit different, which is exciting and keeps me motivated! As a smaller company, we’re typically looking for candidates with specific and specialized backgrounds. Of course, this means I spend a lot of my time sourcing candidates through LinkedIn, job boards, and employee referrals. But what’s unique about Verikai is the thought we put into talent acquisition. I’m constantly strategizing with hiring managers about our openings to ensure we not only find a candidate with great credentials but who also fits the Verikai culture. Nothing beats the days when I’m able to extend an offer to a fantastic candidate. In previous roles, my job was done once the offer had been accepted. I love that at Verikai, I remain the point of contact for new hires and help them get onboarded through their first day!
4. What do you like most about working at Verikai?
I first came to Verikai excited to join a startup environment where I could help build our policies on recruitment and culture. I learned the importance of fine-tuning my process and feeling rewarded when we make an exceptional hire. All that has exceeded expectations, but the absolute joy of being at Verikai is the people. I quickly found myself surrounded by the most talented teammates of my career, coupled with trustworthy leadership that has given me the resources and runway I need to excel. It’s the perfect environment to grow, personally and professionally.
5. Verikai takes great pride in its ability to hire great people. As the most critical person in recruiting, can you describe your process to find great candidates?
I’ve learned to focus my process on finding candidates seeking the host of opportunities and challenges presented by the startup environment. While a candidate’s paper qualifications always matter, my consideration goes well beyond the resume. I want to discover each candidate’s personality—not their job-interview personality, but their real personality! To me, more important than finding someone who perfectly matches the job description is finding someone who’s genuinely enthusiastic about Verikai, fits our culture, and shows the potential to grow into a star performer.
6. Every organization has something unique that makes people attracted to it. Outside of the culture itself, what do you think Verikai offers that makes it unique to attract great candidates?
Verikai has truly awesome benefits. First, we’re entirely remote with a team spread all over the country, and not one of us has a morning commute! We also consistently promote work-life balance, even shutting down for a bit at the end of the year to give our team time to reset. And my personal favorite: If you love to order delivery food (who doesn’t?), we offer a generous weekly GrubHub credit. At this point, I’m not sure I can live without my sushi lunches every week!
7. As a small software company/startup based in the San Francisco bay area, what does Verikai do to recruit competitively and win against the likes of Google, Facebook, Apple, etc.?
Every hire is a huge addition for a small company, and every departure is a felt loss. With this in mind, our candidates go through an extensive interview process that includes meeting their potential department members and many other members of the team across different departments. In fact, every final candidate meets with our CEO, Jeff Chen, for a deep dive into our vision and culture. We want our new hires to be as excited to come on board as we are to have them, and we believe that allowing them to meet so much of our team allows candidates to feel confident in their choice to come on board.
8. What is something a candidate can do to set themselves apart from others on their resume as well as when they speak to you?
Of course, all the standard best practices like a professional LinkedIn picture and an up-to-date resume are musts. But it’s also essential to make sure your resume is simple, concise, and sticks to the highlights of your career. Make it obvious that you’re qualified for the job! When speaking to candidates, I’m always looking to see whether they’ve researched Verikai, even just by reading through our website, and whether they show a genuine interest in us. That allows me to spend less time on exposition and more time getting to know the candidate’s skills and personality.
Now a few fun ones…
9. What do you like to do in your free time?
I’m pretty simple and mostly enjoy spending time with my friends and family. I also love to try new restaurants, especially during weekend getaways to my favorite vacation spots: Sedona and San Diego. I stay active using the Peloton and by taking my dog for walks at our favorite park. I also enjoy listening to podcasts (true crime is my guilty pleasure) and watching Jeopardy nightly.
10. If you were an animal, which animal would you be and why?
Definitely a dolphin! I’m fascinated by dolphins because they’re kind of like humans in that they’re extremely social creatures that easily adapt to new environments. In some ways, I think they’re even smarter than we are!
11. What three things would you bring with you if you were trapped on a desert island with no electricity?
I’ll be honest… this would not be my ideal situation. I’m pretty practical, so I would bring matches, a fishing net, and most importantly, bug spray!
12. If you had to choose a long weekend, which of these and why: Ski/snowboard, beach and sun, national parks, road trip across the country, fine dining and museums, wine country, lake life?
I would choose wine country since some of my favorite memories are visiting wineries and vineyards with friends. If there were some fine dining restaurants, pretty mountains, or a beach nearby, that would be nice too!
To learn more about Jean, connect with her on LinkedIn!