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#AskARecruiter presented by Zulily with host Liz Carroll

Welcome to #AskARecruiter presented by Zulily!

January's special guest was Liz Carroll (She/Her), Talent Acquisition Manager at Zulily.

Liz started her recruiting career in 2014, and has supported hiring for multiple corporate organizations including technology, merchandising and marketing. Liz has experience supporting candidates with varying professional backgrounds and experience levels, and has a proven track record of identifying matches for early in career to executive level job seekers. Currently, she is supporting the Zulily Marketing Org at Talent Acquisition Manager overseeing Marketing and Creative. 
Liz lives in the Seattle area with her spouse and three cat co-workers, and she likes to spend her free time near the water or creating art. She has provided a handy "tips and tricks" handout for you to use!

Here's the recap from our Q&A event. 

  1. As a recruiter, what advice would you give to someone who’s actively looking for a new position while still working for another company?

    A job search can feel like a full-time job, and it does certainly take time. Be prepared to carve out time in your busy life for things like updating your resume, networking on LinkedIn, and applying to jobs. You may be asked to take calls during business hours, and that can certainly be awkward but your recruiter should understand and try to work with your availability. Let them know your situation, and how much notice you need to reserve time out for these calls. These days, interviewing is also much more flexible given so much is done remotely. If you prefer interviews to be split over a couple of days, that is more than a reasonable ask. You are not required to let your manager know you are interviewing elsewhere and reference checks should never be conducted without your permission, but if you have concerns with that you can simply confirm that process with your recruiter. One more thing - when it comes to the initial search when you are applying to several companies, be open and "cast a wide net" with your resume. You may be surprised that a smaller company or slightly different role than you were targeting is just the right fit for your growth and development.
  2. What is your best piece of advice that you have received in your career, that you share with potential candidates seeking new opportunities?

    The best advice I was given that has helped me on my journey and has also been helpful to candidates as I’ve supported them through the process is to be curious. The conversation was with a mentor, who assured me that no matter where we are at in our career, there will always be a time when we will be a student of the business. This inspired me to feel empowered to reach out, ask questions, and try new things. I also found that I was more introspective and able to hone in certain strengths and areas of opportunity and develop a plan for growth (on my own, and also in partnership with my manager). It seems so simple, but I can vet for many managers who also agree this is a special trait to have, and it’s considered a positive contribution to a team setting.
  3. How many marketing roles are currently open at Zulily and how quickly should members apply?

    We have 7 marketing roles posted, ranging from specialist level (usually 2-4 years experience preferred) to Senior Manager, and we also have 1 Director of Outbound Marketing role that just went live. In addition to these roles, we have 10 roles posted within the Creative org. We will continue to hire and post jobs in Q1 and may even see new roles to Zuily in Q2.

    BMAA members, I encourage you to message us any time you may see a role posted here on LinkedIn or on our career site that interests you. You are also welcome to simply reach out to network! Here is the link to the Zulily careers site:

  4. When interviewing virtually, are there any tips that could be helpful to best represent yourself?

    If possible, take the call on a desktop/PC and in a quiet place so you can sit comfortably and stay focused on the discussion. If you need any accommodations for the call (like closed captions), you can let your recruiter know in advance and we can help coordinate that request. Communicating your setup if you use dual monitors, will be looking at and taking notes, or may need to look away for any other reason will help the interviewer know you are present in the discussion. How you show up in your virtual interview, helps give us an idea of how you will show up in a virtual meeting. At Zulily, our managers are empathetic during this virtual interviewing environment and we love the flexibility it offers for our candidates!
  5. How do I find a job that offers others both meaning and money?

    I want the work that I do to be meaningful, and allows me to earn a living.
    Being in Seattle where the cost of living has increased quite a bit over the years, I feel this question so hard! Finding meaning in what you do professionally is important. If you like what you do, it makes a big difference in how you are able to find inspiration and motivation from day-to-day. For some folks, this means working for a customer centric organization, or working in a role with a supportive team that gives mentorship and growth opportunities. I am a firm believer that the people you work with are more important than the company itself, because those are the people you see every day! As you go through the interview process, my suggestion is to talk to the hiring manager in your interviews about your passions, and ask if there will be opportunities for you to spend time on those things that you enjoy.

    As a general rule with compensation, most roles at large employers have starting salaries that factor in your years of experience, skillset, and averages within the organization and external market. As you grow in your career and “level up”, compensation should fall in line. Corporate marketing roles that require analytical rigor, and roles in management tend to pay more, and large organizations (usually 5,000 team members or more) typically offer “promote from within” benefits to team members, and this is a great place to start if you are looking to grow your depth of experience.

  6. In your tips & tricks, you say be open with your recruiter. But how much can I trust that a recruiter has my best interest at heart? How open and honest are you suggesting?

    This is a really good question and I know is a hot topic with job seekers. At the end of the day, all recruiters want to make placements. I think it's important for candidates to actively listen to their recruiter, and ask questions, to get a sense for their motivation in making the placement. When a recruiter gives you tips and feedback, that's a great sign. When they open up to you and find out more about what you want in your career, in your manager, and the company, it means they are being thoughtful in finding the right match. One thing that is important to note is that behind the scenes, we are also advocating for the candidate and using the information we learned from our interactions to ensure hiring leaders know why we are selecting them to move forward in the process. Sometimes it's their technical skillset, and other times it's the less obvious traits like being "scrappy" with high potential for growth. At Zulily, we also try to maximize our candidate's opportunities by sharing their resume with others on our team and seeing what else may be out there if perhaps the initial role isn't the right fit.
  7. Can you share an example how a marketing candidate or any candidate has stuck out to you during the recruiting process in a good way in the past?

    Yes! Two skills that are critical in e-commerce, and I think in life, in general! 😉, are developing partnerships and problem-solving. When a candidate is able to provide examples of how they go about building relationships cross-functionally and how that helps them long term with business objectives, it tells me that they are a good partner who seeks out diverse perspectives and is committed to the bigger goals of the company. Problem-solving is also an important skill, no matter the job or level of the position. In retail, we move fast. We pivot. Things change sometimes on the daily! If a candidate is able to walk me through a scenario that is complex (with multiple layers, requiring multiple steps or pulling in others to escalate or partner with) it helps me to understand how they assess an issue, what they view as the top priority, their project management abilities, if they can “see around corners” and anticipate other issues down the line, and lastly… it shows me how they react under pressure.
Thank you so much to Liz Carroll (She/Her) for providing such awesome insight and advice!

Stay tuned for future events! Learn more about Zulily hereLearn more about BMAA here.