Hiring 4,000 employees and retaining talent: Meet Indeed’s new chief HR leader

Priscilla Koranteng joined global hiring platform Indeed last month as its chief people officer. An HR and DEI veteran with nearly 25 years of experience at Kellogg’s, DXC Technology, T. Rowe Price, Booz Allen Hamilton and JPMorgan Chase, Koranteng has her hands full: Indeed is on a hiring spree while growing competitively and fighting to retain employees.

The London School of Economics graduate recently spoke with HRE about her mandate at Indeed, what HR tech she relies on and why employee listening cannot happen only once or twice a year. 

HRE: What are your responsibilities?

Priscilla Koranteng, Indeed
Priscilla Koranteng is Indeed’s new chief people officer.

Priscilla Koranteng: I will oversee the company’s people functions, including human resources, talent management and real estate, as a member of Indeed’s senior leadership team.

HRE: What tech will you and your team be using?

Koranteng: [Since] the pandemic and even prior, like many organizations, we have been using Slack and Zoom for our meetings and to keep teams connected to one another. We have several groups on Slack where we ensure employees have the freedom to voice their concerns [and] opinions and share updates. We also host regular, all-employee meetings and Q&A sessions. As leaders, we believe it is our responsibility to ensure our employees have all the technology and tools they need to stay productive, effective and efficient, and connected to one another and to us as a leadership team.

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Related: Why the talent shortage is here to stay, according to Cornerstone’s CEO

HRE: What is your mandate? What do you hope to achieve in five years?

Koranteng: My first priority will be to continue building out Indeed’s best-in-class people function that will not only help Indeed deliver on its mission of helping all people get jobs—but also one that can serve as a model of HR industry innovation.  

We’ve got a high growth year ahead of us—Indeed is hiring 4,000 people in the next fiscal year. I believe hiring will continue to be competitive, and the tech industry is no exception. So, we will be laser-focused on recruiting and retaining top talent.

HRE: Will you be analyzing employee data? If so, how? What are you looking for?

Koranteng: I believe great employers should work to win the hearts and minds of their talent every day—not just once or twice a year. Understanding your workforce metrics in terms of hiring rates, promotions, turnover and available labor pools (based on your industry), as well as the pulse of the employees, is critical.

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I keep an eye on metrics around experience, candidate attraction, people advancement and development in order to make sure we’re creating the right work environment for everyone at Indeed. 

At the end of the day, those metrics help us put our people first and operate with empathy across the organization.

HRE: How will you deal with the Great Resignation? Is it a concern?

Koranteng: All employers are fighting three key battles when it comes to hiring right now: the battle to attract talent, the battle to retain talent and the battle to fairly and competitively pay talent.

Ultimately, there are a few key practices that will help us continue Indeed’s track record as a great place to work:

  • Listening to employees. Understanding the needs of your employees comes with frequent listening and willingness to answer tough questions. At Indeed, CEO Chris Hyams takes time to create various forums, like fireside chats, Q&As, etc. He even has a unique series he calls “here to help.” It’s through these open communication forums that leadership can truly understand the needs of their employees—like whether there needs to be stronger solutions for mental health, child care, physical health support and foster a great experience. 
  • Empowering managers to manage. In order to create the best environment for employees, everyday management and engagement is key to getting ahead of those regrettable losses. By the time someone tenders a resignation, it is frankly too late. 
  • Staying competitive. I constantly review pay to ensure equitable practices. Pay equity reviews cannot happen once a year; it must be a constant, “always-on” practice. Beyond pay, it’s the total employment value proposition. I always seek to answer the question: Why would employees stay with us, what makes us unique, and what do we have to offer them?

HRE: What is on your HR tech wishlist?

Koranteng: The tech that helps me best understand and act on our KPIs is the tech I like most. Based on my experience and the shifting nature of organizational and people’s needs, I like to have a pulse on the macro and micro trends across our workforce. That means understanding our make-up overall, turnover, pace of hiring, and cost per employee. It also means understanding how our workers are progressing and developing at Indeed, how many we are retaining, how diverse is our hiring, and how do our candidate and manager experiences compare?

Related: Employee experience will be a key content focus during the upcoming HR Technology Conference at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, with seven scheduled sessions on topics ranging from remote employee engagement to the use of AI and data in EX platforms and much more. Check out the entire track here.

Phil Albinus
Phil Albinus is the former HR Tech Editor for HRE. He has been covering personal and business technology for 25 years and has served as editor and executive editor for a number of financial services, trading technology and employee benefits titles. He is a graduate of SUNY New Paltz and lives in the Hudson Valley with his audiologist wife and three adult children.