Season 2, Ep. 1 of Employer Branding: The Inside Podcast is out! In today’s episode, we’ve had the pleasure of speaking with Noa Levav, recruiting & employer branding manager at Productsup, a cloud-based SaaS platform for product content, optimization, and distribution in commerce. We talked about prioritizing employee experience, the importance of bringing company values to life, and of course, about putting those values to good use when defining your company culture.
What you’ll learn by listening
- Transitioning from recruiting manager to recruiting & employer branding manager
- Prioritizing on employee experience – a must-do for all organizations, regardless of size
- The importance of having carefully defined values
- Putting company values to good use when framing your company culture
- Insightful tips for employer branding managers just starting out
About the company
Productsup provides an intuitive SaaS for product content integration, optimization, and distribution in commerce. Offering a range of solutions like feed management, marketplace integration, seller/vendor onboarding, and product content syndication, Productsup helps brands and retailers validate, structure, and enrich their product content for thousands of retail and digital channels, including Amazon, Walmart, Google, and Facebook.
Enjoy listening to S.02 EP.1 of The Inside Podcast!
Podcast transcription – The power of company values & how to bring them to life with Noa Levav @Productsup
Georgiana: Hi, everyone! This is Georgiana and you’re listening to Employer Branding: The Inside Podcast. And I’m super happy today to be talking to another employer branding manager. Her name is Noa Levav, who works for Productsup as a recruiting and employer branding manager. Nice to meet you Noa, and thank you so much for being with us.
Noa Levav: Thank you so much for having me, Georgiana.
Georgiana: Before we dive deeper into employer branding matters, please tell me what does your role entail exactly? And of course, what does Productsup do?
Noa Levav: Sure. First of all, Productsup provides a cloud-based SaaS platform for product content, optimization, and distribution in commerce. We help brands and retailers validate, structure, and enrich their product content for 1000s of retail and digital channels, including Amazon, Walmart, Google, and Facebook.
It may seem a bit technical, but it basically means that with Productsup, customers can get their products to market faster, scale their businesses, and capture new opportunities. For me, my role for the past two years has been supporting recruiting and employer branding. In the past, I was kind of the general recruiter in multiple departments like engineering and sales. But now as the team has grown, I focus on hiring for our scaling marketing department; so basically that and most of our employer branding initiatives, from our Instagram account, company values, career page, and other candidate-facing initiatives.
Georgiana: I actually could see on your LinkedIn profile that you switched from recruiting manager to recruiting & employer branding manager, which I think is a little bit more encompassing as a role. So then my question is, which is your favorite of the two?
Noa Levav: That’s a very good question. I guess ever since joining I’ve been involved with Productsup’s employer brand to an extent. It started with a few things like managing our master page, supporting some events, and handling things like the creation of videos after internal events and things like that.
But my focus and priority have always been on recruiting. That was basically based on the company’s needs because Productsup was quite small still. But we grew quite a bit. We just reached the 180 employee, Mark. I guess at the beginning of 2020, I was given the opportunity to own a very big project – to revive our company values. So this project and its scope grew quite a bit. The more I dug into the topic, and after reaching a specific milestone with the project, I was promoted to kind of really own the space, so now I’m some sort of a hybrid.
Georgiana: Okay. Do you think that HR is going to own the workplace in the foreseeable future? Will HR be responsible for bringing people back into the workplace? At least this is what a Gartner study shows.
Noa Levav: I think employee experience, in general, should be prioritized whether a company is 100% remote or based in the office. I think the responsibility of who would need to bring people back depends on the organization, the structure, and the responsibilities. I guess for us, yes, it would be the HR department that would be responsible for that. But I do think the important thing here is what would be the definition of the workplace in the future. In any case, it should be in the company’s best interest to provide a great working environment, wherever their employees are based. I think there are ways to do that in the office and outside of it, as well.
Georgiana: That’s definitely gonna fall on the shoulders of the HR. So, challenging times await ahead. Noa, how important do you think it is for a company to have very carefully defined values? And to, I don’t know, maybe really walk the talk that they have on their website with regards to values.
Noa Levav: As I just mentioned, we wrapped up a year-long project based on our company values. For us, in the beginning, we introduced seven company values quite a while ago. And with my project, the aim was to revive them, and make sure that our employees are really well-connected to the company values, and make sure that the values stand for who we are.
When I jumped on the project, for me it was all about the employees. I was reading through a lot of plus survey results from past poll surveys. I was hosting workshops together with my manager, I conducted internal interviews in order to really involve as many people as possible in the process. Because in the end, our mission was to find out what values our employees relate to. I think defining these values helps me personally when it comes to our tone of voice on social media and our career page, or our job descriptions, for example. And also my take on internal communications, too. I think it’s very important, as long as you make sure that the values you end up with translate what you are as a company.
Georgiana: Yeah, I think that’s something companies of all sizes should maybe look at. And to give better attention to. Okay, three tips that you could give an employer branding manager who’s just starting out?
Noa Levav: I guess for me personally, it would have been helpful if someone would have said this to me when I started. But two things I kind of managed to do are: first of all, build relationships internally and work on stakeholder management. I think one of the things that made my life easier when going about anything from a small recruiting campaign to a huge project, as our company values, was the fact that I have been establishing positive relationships with many stakeholders around the company from day one. So mainly in the marketing department, but not only.
Then I would maybe focus on informing or educating myself. If people are like me and are basically kind of defining the role as they go, it is a small company in the end. So basically, I’m learning a lot by doing, I look for as much information as possible, whether it’s conferences, webinars, podcasts, just like this one, or articles and blogs. I feel that I learn so much from reading and reaching out to other professionals who are more experienced than I am. And finally, I would say stick around. I think, back on past companies I worked for before Productsup, and even in companies that are more challenging or where the culture is a bit more complex, there are things to learn. Sometimes even how not to do things can be a valuable lesson if you stick it out.
Georgiana: Look closely in retrospective. What does the future of work look like in general, in your opinion, and then what does it look like on Productsup?
Noa Levav: I really want to believe that some of the flexibility driven by the pandemic will stay in the future. So people would have the freedom to find what works best for them. If it’s working from home or other locations, also flexibility in working hours. For Productsup, I think the fact that we were always flexible and home office-friendly, as a company, first of all, made the transition to fully remote quite easy. At the beginning of the pandemic, of course, it had challenging aspects. But I’d say compared to other companies, it was pretty smooth. And we recently added an option to have a mobile working contract at Productsup, so that our employees can have the freedom and the flexibility to work remotely in the future, as well. And I personally think that’s an amazing benefit. I mean, being an ex-pat myself, it means you can go home and maybe see your family and work from there. Yeah, but we also made sure that our employees have a comfortable home office set up, you know, delivering monitors and chairs in case it’s needed because that’s also helpful.
Georgiana: Okay, you know Noa that’s a question I usually ask all of my guests. And I have to say it has helped me personally as well in learning more and in discovering what helps other people. And that question is, do you have a book that you found really, really helpful as you were starting out?
Noa Levav: Okay. I loved Powerful: Building a culture of freedom and responsibility by Patty McCord. She worked at Netflix for quite some time, and I actually follow her content also on LinkedIn. She has great videos. But in the book specifically, I loved the focus on enabling people to succeed by giving them ownership, feedback, and freedom. It’s definitely something I see in Productsup and strive for myself. And I think that book is a great resource.
Georgiana: Super. I actually heard about Netflix’s employer branding strategy, and I know they have amazing content out there. So I will definitely check it out. And now I’m getting to my last question. If you’d have the ideal budget, what would you do in terms of employer branding at Productsup? Or in any other company?
Noa Levav: That’s a great question. Given that at this point I’m sharing resources with the marketing department, using the help of content design, and PR, I guess an ideal scenario for me would be if I had the option to get some extra support so that I’m not dependent on marketing or their priorities. So maybe having a designated Social Media Manager to support with employer branding-related things. That would be amazing, for example. And I think I would also love an opportunity to work with an external agency. If we think about bigger, you know, bigger scope projects, like defining our EVP in the future. It’s definitely on my to-do list and I am basically learning by doing. I think it would be great to have some expertise, maybe external expertise in such a huge project.
Georgiana: Got it. Noa, thank you so much for talking to me today. I’ll be in touch, for sure. Soon enough, and I hope to meet you in person at some point.
Noa Levav: Thank you so much, Georgiana.
Thank you for listening to Employer Branding: The Inside Podcast. You can find our podcast on Spotify and Apple Music. And if you want to read more on employer branding or digital marketing content in general, go to beaglecat.com or employerbranding.tech. See you next time. Bye!