Take Risks, Make an Impact — These 6 Seattle Companies Are Hiring Now

These companies may be growing, but culture remains a top priority.
Written by Rachael Millanta
February 2, 2022Updated: April 5, 2022

Seattle’s tech industry is growing fast, but six companies are proving that positive culture doesn’t have to be left behind.

With the addition of more than 48,000 tech jobs from 2016 to 2020 — an increase of over 35 percent — Seattle is the fastest-growing tech market in the United States. As if that wasn’t enough to brag about, CBRE’s 2021 research ranked the area as the nation’s second-top tech talent market, only eclipsed by San Francisco. With numbers like these, there’s no denying that Seattle’s tech industry is booming, but what steps should companies take to ensure that workplace culture remains a top priority?

Rainfall’s CEO and chief creative, Marc Anderson, thinks that companies need to reflect on every facet of their progress if they want to foster a positive environment for employees. “We are always growing creatively and the best way to move forward is by learning from our faults,” he said. “The way that we measure our creative output is by the amount of curiosity, exploration and critical thinking we bring to each engagement, rather than focusing solely on the final output.”

Dorothy Mensah, a data scientist in economic research at Convoy, echoed Anderson’s sentiments. “In living our values, we are fostering a work environment that celebrates learning, development and empowerment,” she explained.

Finding a way to amplify workplace culture at a fast-growing company isn’t always easy, but embracing the challenge is essential to long-term success in the market. Built In Seattle caught up with six industry leaders across the Emerald City to discuss what makes their workplace cultures unique — and they’re all hiring! 

 

Andrew Kasbari
Director of Product Management • Unity

 

What’s one thing that makes your company culture unique or special?

The transparency and trust between Unity’s executive team and the rest of the organization is very open and unique. Unity doesn’t brush hard topics under the rug — we confront them and have healthy discussions, regardless of whether it’s a product investment decision within the company or a sensitive global topic. This open communication allows employees to speak their minds and lets the executive team hear hundreds or thousands of diverse opinions. I really believe that this has helped Unity make the best decisions possible and has given its employees the space to have their voice heard. It has ultimately built the culture that makes Unity what it is today. 

Lastly, our culture isn’t just about communication — it’s clear that opinions are heard and acted on. It’s impossible to please everyone, but our executive team always makes a well-thought-out decision and articulates why they came to their conclusions. This is what makes Unity’s culture unique to me.

This open communication allows employees to speak their minds and lets the executive team hear hundreds or thousands of diverse opinions.”

 

What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on recently and what did you enjoy most about it?

The coolest project I’ve had the chance to work on recently was Game Growth. This is a program that supports indie game developers with tools and expertise that help take their mobile games to the next level. It enables these indie creators while letting them keep their intellectual property and creative direction, which is something that hadn’t previously been done in the market. 

What I enjoyed most about this program was its true focus on the customer. One of Unity’s values is “users first” and I think this program truly embodied that goal. We didn’t care whether you were a one-person creator that worked out of coffee shops or a ten-person team with a proper office — we cared whether you were creative, talented and hard-working. I had the opportunity to meet some awesome creators from across the world and help them get their feet off the ground, all while getting to play their awesome games.

 

 

Dorothy Mensah
Data Scientist, Economic Research • Convoy

 

What’s one thing that makes your company culture unique or special?

Our values are incredibly special to our culture. Most companies preach values but Convoy employees practice them everyday. When I first joined, I was surprised to observe how my teammates would mention which Convoy value translates to what they are working on in that exact moment. Although it was odd at first, I recognized that in living our values, we are fostering a work environment that celebrates learning, development and empowerment. I’ve now made the note to be intentional about working towards our values in everything I do. Values such as “one team” guide our collaboration and “dive deep” encourages our intellectual curiosity to get at the root of a problem.

I recognized that in living our values, we are fostering a work environment that celebrates learning, development and empowerment.”

 

What’s one company resource, program or benefit that has really enhanced your experience as an employee?

The mentor-mentee program at Convoy has certainly enhanced my experience and shown me that the company is not only interested in my professional growth, but also my personal growth. I’ve been paired with two wonderful mentors, one of whom is an internal career mentor and the other who is part of the Convoy data science mentorship program. We meet weekly to discuss challenges in my current work streams or sometimes just to have a friendly chat. Outside of our weekly meetings, they have made themselves available to answer any questions I have or point me in the right direction. This has been helpful in my transition from university to the corporate world.

 

 

Meeting area with exposed wooden beams
First Mode

 

Krunal Desai
Director of Electrical Engineering • First Mode

 

What’s one thing that makes your company culture unique or special?

There are a few main themes in our company culture. Firstly, individuals always get to work on clean technology and sustainability in a way that’s practical and pragmatic. We’re fortunate to have large customers who are dead serious about decarbonization, which means that we have a very direct path to creating a product that people are interested in.

Because of the position we’re in, we also get to work with really interesting technologies. For instance, we work with some of the largest fuel cell vendors and several major lithium-ion battery vendors — that’s hundreds of kilowatts of fuel cells and megawatt-hours of batteries. We also work very closely with a lot of electric vehicle component suppliers, using their next-generation technology and adding it to our toolbox. We still design our own hardware and we develop our software and firmware in-house, creating platforms that we can apply to all of our clean-technology projects.

We do a lot of stuff in-house because we have to and something we buy today may be something we make tomorrow. The other key thing is that we’re generally tool-agnostic — we don’t have a horse in the race. We just get to play with all of these technologies.

Something we buy today may be something we make tomorrow.”

 

What’s one company resource, program or benefit that has really enhanced your experience as an employee?

One of the favorite things about the team that we’ve built at First Mode is that we have a super-diverse set of backgrounds. There are folks in my team who came from industrial robotics, some who have worked on medical devices, even automotive or aerospace — it’s like collecting Pokémon, getting the best of these specialties and putting them all together. We’ve also got folks where engineering is their second or even third career. It is often these people who bring some of the most valuable insights to our problems. We’re really big on making sure that we’re not just stacked up with ex-space or ex-automotive people. This means that all of our ideas are able to collide and we get to do things in a really interesting way, combining the best practices of factory automation and industrial robotics with the best practices of automotive, cherry-picking the rules that we follow from each one.

 

 

Empty open plan meeting area
Xpansiv

 

Emily Walker
Technical Product Manager • Xpansiv

 

What’s one thing that makes your company culture unique or special?

Xpansiv’s culture is unique because of the company’s willingness to continue to expand. Since the day I started here, I’ve met so many amazing, talented and driven individuals. As a product and process manager, I’ve had the opportunity to not only work directly with so many of them across the company, but also learn from their vast amounts of experience and expertise. With every hire and expansion, we continue to build our teams in this way, expanding our diverse group of driven and amazing people targeting tomorrow’s problems today.

With each project and experience, the company presents interesting and new problems to solve with an unrivaled passion to help drive change.”

 

What’s one company resource, program or benefit that has really enhanced your experience as an employee?

I have worked for Xpansiv for a little over three years. In that time, I have held many roles and have worn many hats, including QA, account manager, scrum master, project manager, product manager, general process and tooling guru. Xpansiv has continued to allow me to hone my team building and process skills while teaching me more about this industry than I ever thought I could possibly know. The company created an awareness and passion for the environment in me while still allowing me to grow and build my technical skills. With each project and experience, the company presents interesting and new problems to solve with an unrivaled passion to help drive change.

 

 

Loryn Kanemaru
Senior Product Manager • Routable

 

What’s one thing that makes your company culture unique or special?

Routable truly lives by its company values and I see my coworkers demonstrating these values on a daily basis. One value that I am particularly fond of is “volunteer assistance.” While its tenets include helping others, championing collaboration and asking for help, my favorite is fostering an environment of inclusivity and this manifests in multiple ways. For example, our people operations team has a form where folks can submit inclusivity-related feedback and we know it will be considered thoughtfully. One person submitted a note about using exclusive language around mental health which led our HR business partner to send a note to the entire company highlighting the issue and offering alternate language to convey similar thoughts. Since then, I’ve noticed the shift in word choice in both written and verbal communication which really signals that everyone at Routable has a willingness to learn and evolve in alignment with this value.

Although Routable is a remote-first company, the team has put a great deal of effort into ensuring that folks get to know one another outside of their day-to-day teams.”

 

What’s one company resource, program or benefit that has really enhanced your experience as an employee?

Although Routable is a remote-first company, the team has put a great deal of effort into ensuring that folks get to know one another outside of their day-to-day teams. Recently, we had a company-wide hackathon to give everyone an opportunity to build stronger connections with different teams. As someone who was unable to travel to meet up with my team in person, I was grateful that there was a remote option to join an offsite pod and that I was able to collaborate with people that I had never interacted with before. We got to play games, have meals together and hack on some projects that are helping Routable improve its remote processes. This experience was really fun, especially since as the company grows, it is becoming harder to meet people that I do not interact with on a day-to-day basis. The people are the best part of working at Routable and I really value company-sponsored opportunities to get to know them better.

 

 

Marc Anderson
CEO and Chief Creative • Rainfall

 

What’s one thing that makes your company culture unique or special?

We make a conscious effort to openly discuss aspects of our work that we were disappointed in or that we wish we could re-explore if given the opportunity. In many work environments, it would be considered too vulnerable to expose these feelings, but Rainfall works to embrace the understanding that we are always growing creatively and the best way to move forward is by learning from our faults.

In a recent office critique, I asked everyone to bring an example of a deliverable they felt they knocked out of the park, as well as a deliverable they felt fell short. For each example, we discussed what we thought worked well and how we felt it could have been improved. The point of this exercise was to demonstrate that nothing is perfect. 

In taking this approach, the hope is that we recognize that our work is not precious and if a solution is giving us trouble or not quite living up to our expectations, the best way to move forward is likely to drop it and start fresh.

We make a conscious effort to openly discuss aspects of our work that we were disappointed in or that we wish we could re-explore if given the opportunity.”

 

What’s the coolest project you’ve worked on recently and what did you enjoy most about it?

We recently completed a platform in the sports memorabilia space that tested our ability to become highly knowledgeable in sports cards, grading and collectors’ markets in a very short amount of time. For every engagement, the greatest challenge is often not in the execution of design and experience, but rather learning about our clients’ business and identifying the questions we need to ask in order to maximize the opportunities for differentiation and success. For this particular project, we explored new methods for data visualization and information design that are not only comprehensive, but also so simple that audiences of all levels of sophistication could quickly understand how to interact. The result is not only a product that is approachable to everyone, but a framework for accessible design that we can apply to all of our current and future projects.

 

 

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