Case study: Lunio
Lunio makes the internet a safer and more reliable place for everyone trying to grow their business by automatically getting rid of fake clicks, traffic, and leads on all ad platforms. We spoke with Matt McKenna, Head of Talent Acquisition at Lunio, to find out about the problems they solve, some top culture tips, and why they chose Zinc as their background screening provider.
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your role at Lunio?
I spent 9 years working in tech recruitment, working in agencies, managing teams of 12 people. After my first child, and buying my first house, the allure of agency recruitment lost it’s intrigue for me. I got on really well with one of my clients, Lunio, so when the COO Segev asked me to join, I went for it! My ambition was always to go internal and this was a great fit.
I really love working as an internal recruiter. My background in agency recruitment has put me in really good stead to be able to my job. I've been helping small startups and scaleups, to grow and hire their first couple of engineering hires. I joined January 2021 as employee number 10 and we’re now a 75 person scaleup. We’ve grown a lot in the two years that I've been here.
What have been the biggest challenges you’ve found scaling the company from 10-75?
So, this might be a little bit cliche, but from from my side, it really does pay to have truth in what you say. In agency recruitment it’s more transactional, you’re essentially a salesperson to earn your fee at the end of the day. Whereas in internal recruitment at Lunio, you do feel more like a consultative partner. You're impacting the hiring process as well as the assessment criteria. How do we assess who is a good culture add to the business? What does a good candidate look like in terms of X, Y and Z?
Initially it can be quite challenging to get everyone on the same page. One hiring managers perspective can look slightly different to someone else's, but in the grand scheme of things, it’s the small nuances that can have a massive impact to a candidate being a yes or no. It’s ever evolving. What looked good to us as a 15-20 person business, to where we are now is massively different. When I first joined there was no-one in our talent function, so I was helping establish what our culture is, what’s the working methodology? Keeping on top of the ever changing needs of the business from a hiring perspective is challenging, but exciting.
I find, especially with a SaaS startup, is that you’re hiring in 12-18 month cycles. When you're hiring at a 10-15 person startup, you’re looking for people who are happy to get involved in different projects, people who aren’t specialists. There will be elements of their job that's not in their contract, but they are expected to help out. As you keep growing and scaling, you start looking for subject matter experts in their field.
Have you got any tips on culture?
For me, one thing I try put a lot of emphasis on is the continuity and the authenticity within the business—from a top down approach. Do our founders embrace the values that they've set? If they don't, it bleeds all the way down. I'm very happy to say that it definitely does at Lunio. We've got the values that we have internally, like working with humans, when it's broken, fix it. Again, it’s quite a cliche but they are terms you can probably apply to most companies. Having the leadership and founding team, who are first in the trenches when work needs to be done—is really important from a value and culture perspective.
There's a lot of emphasis on things like doing 6pm pizza nights on a Thursday or a social trying to get everyone in the company involved. In my experience, no one wants it. No one really cares anymore about that sort of stuff, they would prefer to be left alone. After their work is done, they have a life. It's more about providing a good environment during those hours, which allow them to learn or earn and be in a job where they are rewarded in a genuine, authentic way. A pat on the back goes a long way rather than a mention at an all hands meeting and that boss has never spoke to that person for five, six weeks. For me it’s not rocket science, it’s about being decent people and letting that shine through the business.
What is Lunio's mission and what sets you apart from other companies?
Lunio is a performance marketing efficiency tool. We help make sure that companies are being a lot more efficient with the budget they have.
In theory, we can work with any company around the world who has a performance performance marketing function, whether it be internally or externally. If you have paid or sponsored ads for your service, across the majority of the different platforms around the world, what you'll find is there is a tonne of invalid traffic coming through. And that invalid traffic can include anything from bots, clickfarms, your competitors down the road manually clicking your ads or web scrapers. All of these different forms, some with malicious intent and some non-malicious, are wasting your budgets unnecessarily. We seek to solve that invalid traffic problem. We’re a dashboard that integrates and works reactively identifying and proactively blocking any invalid users from seeing our customers ads. We show them trends, showing them the reasons why and the behaviors to a highly accurate degree. We show customers how much money we're going to save them as a result of blocking traffic and how they can utilise that cost saving to optimise their next campaigns. This makes our customers a lot more efficient in how they do things.
What problem(s) did you face before using Zinc?
When I first joined Lunio the only person in the people or talent function was myself. All processes that I knew from my agency days, with regards to reference and background checking, were painstakingly manual. We were, and we still are growing at a rapid rate, so we knew we always had to find a solution to automate our needs. I was wasting so much time manually checking references, calling around, trying to get emails, most of which didn't get responded to. Everything that we now automate with Zinc, we had to do manually previously.
Why did you choose Zinc?
We had to find something that would we could personalise to our needs for certain roles. We have hired everything from our CFO to a junior developer and we needed the ability to customise the level of background screening depending on different job complexities. We wanted something we could mix and match depending on our needs. We wanted something to grow with us, and something that is a modern, automated tool. Something that I can put at the back of my mind once we've hired that person, I can rely on it and let it do it’s work and do all the heavy lifting (and then alert me if any issues arise).
The final part of what we were looking for was something that would integrate really well with our HRIS. We use Bob for our HRIS and teamtailor for our ATS.
Zinc was a perfect fit! I spoke to someone in the team, had a demo and thought, this is exactly what we need. I thought let’s get on it. The benefit of working with smaller companies is that we had a demo one day and we were using it I think two weeks afte. It was really quick turnaround, really good.
What results have you achieved by using Zinc?
Since we've started using Zinc we’ve onboarded about 40 to 45 people in total. In that time, we’ve saved on average 55 hours in requesting, conducting and getting the background checks, back. In February alone we’ve saved 13 hours. It’s amazing!
Our candidate satisfaction feedback score on Zinc is 5 out of 5. One of the things we wanted when looking for a background screening solution was something that wouldn’t impact our candidate experience. This score is testament that Zinc has definitely been an extension of us and our needs. That’s been another massive plus.
What are your favourite features of Zinc?
It's all about that whole user experience piece. One of my OKRs and the talent OKRs within the business is looking at how we improve candidate experience. We regularly audit all the tech we use internally from a recruiting perspective, and get feedback from our team, and we've never had a negative word said about Zinc, which is obviously brilliant, it’s really intuitive. Zinc makes all of the manual, complex archaic processes that a lot of companies have, completely redundant. There's no need to go through that process anymore. You guys handle it. The whole user experience is great! That's the main thing that I love.