Preserving company culture is, and always has been, one of Salted Stone’s top priorities. We believe in building a familial, exciting, safe, and cohesive environment for all hires. But finding the right candidates to compliment our in-house teams, operating in four offices across three continents, can be challenging.
That’s why we use Plum.io -- an AI-powered HR software that enables employers to predict the quality of their hires with certainty, develop their employees’ skill sets, retain top talent, and transform company culture.
“Plum allows us to dig one step further in the hiring process before the phone interview. We learn more about the applicant, and identify skills that aren’t necessarily ascertainable via a resume or application. We’ve already hired folks across almost all of our departments using the Plum test, and they’re all absolute rockstars!”
– Cindy Park, Director of People Ops @ S2
And we’re certainly not the only ones taking advantage of Plum’s software and proprietary database to hire with culture-fit, growth potential, and diversity in mind. So, when contacted to revamp the web presence of this transformative organization, on a journey to ditch the HR guessing game and enhance the hiring experience, we jumped at the chance.
Challenges + Goals
At the onset of the relationship, Plum's Marketing Director Andy Pandya and his team identified the following issues: technical maintenance headaches, site-wide aesthetic inconsistencies, inefficient publishing processes, and a less-than-ideal UX.
These pain points were creating significant bottlenecks to growth.
The team needed to regularly update and amend the website without the help of costly development resources. They wanted to visually convey the organization’s very clearly defined mission across all web pages and collateral, but had essentially built an experimental “launch pad” for trying out best practices. Their bandwidth and ability to host and regularly update a blog (let alone track engagement metrics, organic rankings, etc.) was being squashed by technical issues, and the User Experience was lacking finesse and differentiation.
Their goals were clear: break down backend roadblocks to efficient publishing and updating, visually convey the essence of the Plum brand (one built around hope, inclusion, compassion, accessibility, and groundbreaking tech) with total continuity, enhance the users understanding of their platform, and make it stand out.
The Platform + The Agency
Once initial conversations were underway, It wasn’t difficult to ideate on the Plum team’s vision for their new home on the web using HubSpot’s versatile and ready-to-scale Content Management System suite. This would allow for a direct connection to their Marketing, CRM, Sales, and automation tools, and enable easier Search Engine Optimization.
Emily Sider, Plum’s Content & Copy Specialist, explains their rationale for choosing HubSpot over a competing solution: "Hosting our website in Hubspot was a natural extension of our existing sales and marketing processes, giving us a single platform to report, analyze, and execute campaigns." But why work with Salted Stone?
A mid-century modern theme was pitched right away. “It’s an era in history defined by promise.” Explains Andy. “The space program was being launched, the US was coming out of two world wars, everyone was harboring new dreams of working hard and producing results for their families and themselves. We wanted strong and clean iconography, rockets, a monorail, martinis, a jumbo jet! The site needed a level of accessibility and democratization that matches our technology - available to every employer and employee.” For the Plum team, this is where the opportunity to differentiate from the competition was strongest.
Sider felt that their aesthetic approach had to make their unique value set and intrinsic understanding of the HR and hiring processes. “We’re an AI-solution, and for a lot of people that’s a scary term. So many folks in this industry try to educate users about it, but often use ‘humans holding hands with robots’ imagery to prove that it’s not scary. We wanted to keep the sentiment, but not the cliche and literal interpretation. We wanted to avoid jargon, acronyms, buzzwords, complex principles, and visual workflows. So, we asked Salted Stone to use everyday objects to convey complex ideas.”
Salted Stone’s design and development teams were thrilled to execute the vision. Designers Mitch, Melissa, and Racquel got started on style tiles, mood boards, and wireframing processes.
“It’s always nice when a client comes prepared with an aesthetic they like, and a clear understanding of how copy and user pathways will come into play with the visuals.” Says Mitch McKenzie, Creative Director at Salted Stone.
“The folks at Plum had really excellent ideas for gamification of concepts, and interactive tool assets, too. This made it easy to get started on illustrations, color schemes, and font selections. We ran with the concept of ‘paired-down, but fun’ and used playful graphics.”
Karen Cagape, who developed the parallaxes effect on the See It In Action page on HubSpot, set to work on one of the site’s more complicated (and super cool) pages. “It was definitely challenging to custom develop the ‘space race’. The sections on the designed mockup were horizontally stacked... usually, when you're writing the code for a web page, you expect things to fall vertically. So, I had to be resourceful when writing the code. It was equally challenging to animate the contestants because the effect needs to start and stop at certain positions in the user’s scroll. All in all, the page looks really cool. Definitely challenging to build, but it’s awesome.”
Watch 'em fly.
The Finished Product
Ultimately, Salted Stone designed a scalable, ‘future-proof’ home on the internet that not only augmented Plum’s existing brand voice, but elevated the overall look and usability of the site.
“We wanted to partner with a HubSpot agency that could build more robust and interactive elements that would draw our visitors in. Throughout the process, we laughed a lot, felt supported by our Account Manager, and really valued the trust between our teams. Trust is business-critical, especially with a daunting project like this… we were getting a totally new look for the first time.“
"Outside of the external impact… the website has also been a unifying force internally.” Says Andy. “It’s highly functional, but totally whimsical. We’re given positive feedback on an almost daily basis from prospects and customers alike.”
So far, the top-of-funnel metrics point to an equally favorable public perception.
After the site’s initial launch on July 12th, 2018 - conversions increased significantly. When comparing metrics from May 11th to June 11th, 2018 vs. June 12th to July 12th, 2018, we saw substantial improvements.
Bounce Rate dropped from 17.1% to 13.37%
Pages Per Sessions increased from 2.65 to 3.67
Total Page Views increased 29.5%
The Free Trial form saw an increase in overall submissions by ~52%
The Demo form saw an increase in overall form submissions by 200%
Year-over-year metrics from June 12th - 17th, 2017 to June 12th - 16th, 2018 were equally heartening:
- Number of Sessions to the Plum.io website increased by ~37%
- Number of Sessions per User increased by ~3%
And conversion metrics have continued to improve. Comparing dates December 12th, 2017 - June 11th, 2018 to June 12th, 2018 - December 11th, 2018 the team saw:
A 108% total increase in demo form submissions
23% increase in demo form conversion rates
The site has also made waves from a sales perspective.
“Some of the enterprise prospects are liking it.” Says Andy. “As a software company, I learned early on how large organizations select which HR tool they’re going to work with. It’s often by proxy of asking themselves ‘How fun will it be to work with these people? To collaborate? To meet and talk weekly?’ Now, our site shows what we are about as people and a company.”
Plum's remarkable technology, supported by their passionate and collaborative team, is changing the conversation about HR and AI. From here, the "future of work" looks pretty damn cool.
For hiring, onboarding, and retaining top talent, trust Plum.io. For a sharper website, built to attract, convert, and retain your buyers, trust Salted Stone. Schedule a call with us today!