We have heard a lot about the company culture at Carvana, but this podcast was our opportunity to get a deeper dive with an inside perspective. Neil Shah was able to give us the inside look at the growth of Carvana and how they have continued to support their employees through the past year (in the middle of a pandemic if you forget).

Carvana has grown rapidly since its inception and due to the innovation and the concept behind Carvana, the company has continued to grow over the past year, where many other companies have struggled. Since the concept of Carvana already included limited contact with others and had a foundation set in technology to make car buying easy, this allowed Carvana to focus on their people during the beginning of the pandemic instead of the business platform itself. While other companies were struggling to find the right forms of technology to support their company becoming contactless, Carvana was able to put focus on their employees first. In a matter of three fast weeks, Carvana was able to shift their employees to working remote, with a similar and comfortable set up that they had in their office. They cut back hours on some staff, but never cut their health care coverage. Carvana changed their sick plan to include support for those that got covid so they never had to tap into their PTO. The leadership team even took cuts in their own salaries to make sure that the employees were covered.

After shifting their employees to remote and supporting them in their new routines, the company was able to put the focus back toward the company and ways to grow in a contactless fashion. The focus was never off the employees though. The leadership continues to stay in open communication with the employees, continues to offer opportunities for recognition, and supports the employees in being their authentic selves in the workplace. When we mention recognition, we are talking next level recognition in some cases where Carvana gifted 21 employees with a new car this year.

You cannot have a conversation about company culture without talking about values. Carvana has seven values that they showcase and refer to often, but Neil gave us his top two, one of which we cannot get enough of. “Your next customer may be your mom,” is one of their core values, that is not only referenced daily as the employees interact with a wide range of customers, but this is value is showcased on one of the walls in their office. We know many companies that write core values on the wall that do not truly embody what they stand for, but Carvana took it to the next level by adding photos of the employee’s moms on the wall as well. We absolutely love that Carvana has taken the value one step further to help there to be a true connection with the employees and the core values that they believe in.

Here are the rest of their core values in case you are interested…

• We’re all in this together
• Be brave
• There are no sidelines
• Zag forward
• Don’t be a Richard (you know what this one means… and we love it!)

This podcast is not just to hear about a few values that are written on a wall. We know that just because you write them on the wall doesn’t mean the staff feels connected and automatically feels the stronger company culture. This podcast gives our listeners the opportunity to hear about the company culture through the stories, examples, and passion that Neil shares. Hearing from him allows our listeners to connect.

Most of us have left a position at least once, to join a company because we wanted more opportunities to grow. We have most likely stayed with a company because we could truly be ourselves (or left a company because we couldn’t be ourselves). These actions and feelings are at the root of a good company culture and our listeners have the opportunity to connect through this podcast and hearing about the good company culture with Carvana from Neil’s view.

If you like disrupting the norm and are looking to join a company revolutionizing an industry then you will LOVE what Carvana has done for the car buying experience. Buying a car the old-fashioned way sucks and we are working hard to make it NOT suck. I mean, have you seen our vending machine?!

We are looking for people who are excited to thrive in an environment of impactful change. Team spirit is evident at Carvana and every day we let our passions and creativity foster innovation.

We take big swings, set ambitious goals, and challenge each other to make data- and process-driven decisions in everything we do. We’ve been changing the game since 2013, and we’re not taking our foot off the gas now.

Neil Shah is the Team Lead of Technical Recruiting at Carvana. He has over 13 years of experience in Technical Recruiting coming from a recruiting agency background.

He made the leap from agency to corporate technical recruiting in 2018 in an effort to be a shepherd of culture and growth rather than just a placement professional. He is passionate about creating inclusive and diverse technical teams and building long-term relationships.

Connect with Neil on LinkedIn.

Resources / References


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