4 min. read
Diversifying your Tech Team in 2023: A Case Study of GetYourGuide and Xena
How Xena hired 2 Engineering Managers for GetYourGuide in 3 months
What’s diversity got to do with it?
Let’s cut to the chase: the value of diversity in tech is very simple, and it all comes down to us (the users). The tech industry caters to billions of diverse customers scattered across the planet. Therefore, if the consumers are diverse, so should the teams building these products and services, right? In theory, yes, however, in practice, the reality is quite different.
But shall we focus on the positives and take a look at all the benefits of having a diverse team? Research has shown time and time again that diverse teams are collectively smarter, more productive, more innovative, and overall more successful. Having a wide variety of backgrounds, experiences and cultures can only enrich the quality of the product or service you provide. The contrast and fusion of different opinions and perspectives is going to be the game changer.
So, if diverse teams are the key to success – what’s holding the tech industry back?
First of all, it’s not as simple as it sounds. “Diversifying your team isn’t as easy as just hiring more women or minorities within your team. It also involves creating an inclusive culture that will retain the diverse talent and provide equal opportunities for growth” says Natascha Nihsen, Senior Tech Recruiter at GetYourGuide.
It’s great to commit to hiring more women on your tech team, but how do you get more women into your hiring pipeline? That’s where Xena comes in with a specialization in recruiting women in Product and Engineering roles. Let us take the load off your shoulders and do what we do best – recruit women for leadership, product, and engineering roles. We are here to help you diversify your team and support you in achieving your DEI goals. Are you curious to learn what that entails?
Why not hear it from Natascha herself? We’ll let her describe our 3-month partnership with GetYourGuide and how we placed 2 women Engineering Managers for their Supply Growth and Spatial Navigation teams in 2022.
How would you describe the Recruitment Process with Xena?
Really positive. The starting point was meeting with Megan, the Head of DEI Recruitment and I was really impressed from the get-go. I could notice immediately the values behind Xena and it’s clear how the Xena team emphasizes the importance of being aligned on the goals to be achieved.
The reason why I’m a recruiter is the candidates. I want to be able to provide opportunities for them and set them up for success. I felt that Xena was in sync with this and we became one team working flawlessly together.
The level of transparency, care, and willingness to work closely as a unit was present throughout the entire process. It didn’t feel like we hired an agency, but rather the start of an actual partnership. Working with Xena has developed many possibilities and discoveries on how we can keep improving as a business.
What led you to partner with Xena?
At GetYourGuide, diversity and inclusion are top priorities. We are not only focusing on increasing diversity at the recruitment level, but we’re also working to build and maintain a diverse and inclusive culture. Our two main goals are to increase female representation across leadership and within the tech department, which aligns with the current market reality.
Diversity is a continuous process that requires a lot of focus, not just a quick fix. That’s why we started looking for support. It was important for us to find a partner who truly cares and is willing to help us in this journey. We wanted to explore any areas where we were potentially falling short and to receive support in making improvements.
During our search, we looked into various options and evaluated their approach to diversity. When we spoke with Megan from Xena, we could tell that they had a deep understanding of the challenges in the market and had a personal connection with the candidates.
From our perspective, we didn’t want to change the way we recruited; we still want the best candidates and have a high talent bar. But we wanted to ensure that women in the market felt encouraged to apply. Ultimately, we want to make sure that we put in the effort to diversify our recruitment pipeline and ensure that females have the same opportunity.
Did we meet your expectations?
We had fast wins and didn’t need to get a big list of candidates because we were happy with the profiles shared from the beginning. Actually, our first hire was the first candidate Xena sent us.
We noticed the effort behind these candidates that were pre-screened thoroughly. We could tell the potential, value, and why it was a great investment of our time. It was easy to align on what we are looking for and what we need.
In terms of CV quality, there was a diverse range that hit on different aspects of the spectrum we were open to. I really appreciate that Xena didn’t waste any of our time, every person we spoke to was very relevant and when needed of any calibration, the team quickly addressed what we were looking for.
How would you rate the quality of the pipeline?
The recruitment team was ready to go. They had a talent pool ready for us and during the kick-off, they already had people in mind to consider. In my past experience, it usually takes up to four weeks to calibrate, but with Xena, it was very fast.
The overall process was smooth. With one of the hires, it seemed like an impossible situation as they already had a competing offer, so the odds were against us. However, I appreciate the work Xena invested in getting to know the candidate and building relationships with them.
Throughout the whole process, the weight was shared between GetYourGuide and Xena. We worked closely, and ultimately, managed to make the applicant feel supported from both sides. In the end, we managed to make the hire. A fantastic outcome was reached through resilience and positive energy during a stressful period.
Did anything stand out for you working with Xena?
Yes, Xena invests in people for the right reasons and tackles the issue as a full circle. Not only getting more women in tech but also investing in future generations through the donations collected.
So what’s next for Xena and GetYourGuide’s partnership?
“We are excited to continue partnering with Xena in both recruitment as well as various other opportunities. We’re looking forward to the upcoming Women in Tech Awards in March as the CTO Award sponsor, and we are excited about the other opportunities to really engage the community and the amazing women in tech. And of course, we are excited to have Xena support us in further increasing our female representation across the organization as we work on future roles together”.
“You can quickly tell that the Xena team does this on a daily basis and had a personal connection with the candidates.
It didn’t feel we hired an agency but the start of an actual partnership. Working with Xena has developed many possibilities and discoveries on how can we keep improving as a business.”
Senior Recruiter at GetYourGuide