What You Should Know
Yelp, Inc. employees give five stars to the fast-growing company that has become a household name. The kitchens are fully stocked, so no need to bring breakfast or lunch. Other perks include free health benefits, gym discounts and Friday beer keg parties. If you’re working in Sales, music plays all day long. Breaks are encouraged during the day so ping pong, billiards and air hockey games are ongoing. The largest population of employees is in Sales, so this career path may not be a fit if you don’t enjoy cold-calling. But 95 percent praise the fun and caring environment where employees are encouraged to "be unboring." One employee says, "I wake up excited to go to work. I feel valued, and my manager listens to me and responds to issues within reason. The sense of ownership of what we are doing is tremendous, and I'm proud to say I work here."
WHAT THEY DO
Yelp is a website and mobile application that connects people with great local businesses - anything from restaurants to dog groomers - through more than 90 million consumer reviews in 30 countries. The Yelp community is made up of engaged locals who connect online and off to share their opinions about local businesses.
| Website: www.yelp.com
|| US Headquarters: San Francisco, California
| US Sites: 6
|| Major Locations: San Francisco, CA (2 offices); Phoenix, AZ; New York, NY; Palo Alto, CA, Chicago, IL
|Stock Symbol: YELP
|| US Employees: 3852
| Industry: Technology
|| Worldwide revenues: $377.5 million
| Employees worldwide: 4106
|| Founded: 2004
How much responsibility would I have? What kind of support is there for professional development?
Great Rated! conducted an anonymous survey of randomly selected employees to assess the quality of the workplace challenges the company provides. At Yelp, 84 percent of employees report the company often or almost always provides needed training, fair promotions and personally challenging work. Another 11 percent report the company sometimes provides these opportunities, for a combined positive rating from 95 percent of employees in the Great Challenges category.
Yelp employees connect consumers to local businesses through the company website and mobile app. The company has approximately 3,852 employees in the United States, where they currently operate six offices.
Most employees (86 percent) say they carry a lot of responsibility in the organization, and even more (89 percent) say that managers trust them to carry out these responsibilities without micromanaging them. For the majority of employees (82 percent), their work at Yelp is more than just a job: it provides special meaning.
At Yelp, 83 percent of employees feel they receive the training and development they need to further their careers. While it is often difficult for most companies to ensure that promotions are awarded fairly across organizations, at Yelp, 84 percent say that promotions consistently go to those who best deserve them, exceeding what one can typically expect even at the very best companies in the country.
Supporting Employee Development
- Average annual training for full-time salaried employees: 182 hours
- Rather than wait for an annual review, employees have quarterly conversations with managers to help direct their career goals.
- Formal training opportunities, such as leadership development programs, are available to help groom internal management candidates.
For me, it is the ability to run far with an idea, even if it's not 100-percent related to my job description. Ever since starting here as an intern, I've been empowered to make several fairly large organization-wide impacts that changed the way we onboard new engineers and the way we recruit new engineers, simply because I understood the problem and had the drive to make that change.
What would my colleagues be like? How do people have fun? How formal a workplace is it?
At Yelp, 93 percent of employees say they often or almost always enjoy their colleagues and find their workplace to be fun and cooperative. Another 5 percent sometimes benefits from these qualities, for a combined positive rating from 98 percent of employees in the Great Atmosphere category.
Yelp has six offices in the U.S., with headquarters in San Francisco located in a historic building in the heart of the city. Yelp's offices have desks grouped in pods to help team members communicate and promote strong team dynamics. Some employees, principally those who are part of the Community group, work remotely.
Nine out of 10 or more employees describe their working environment as caring, fun and cooperative, with a family or team feeling and as a place where they feel comfortable being themselves. A remarkable 98 percent described it as consistently friendly. In fact, 87 percent actually look forward to coming to work.
Fun and Celebrations
- Yelp employees get together onsite each Friday and toast the week's end over beers.
- With input from their teams, managers plan quarterly offsite outings to help build camaraderie and have fun.
- Employees also enjoy semi-annual offsite events where they may be encouraged to come dressed in costumes. Past themes include Cirque de Yelp and a 1920s prohibition theme.
Caring and Support
- At times of personal tragedy in the life of an employee, Yelp shows support in ways such as organizing donations to an appropriate charity or sending flowers if a colleague has undergone surgery.
- Parents welcoming a new child receive a gift basket with baby items including a Yelp onesie, to celebrate the new family member.
- Yelp employees frequently show how much they care about each other. When a Hamburg-based employee visiting the San Francisco office broke her ankle, her colleagues responded by bringing her treats and taking shifts by her hospital bedside to lift her spirits.
People celebrate special events around here.
People who work here are genuinely happy. When you walk through the door in the morning, you are greeted with smiling faces, questions about how your weekend was, how your children are, etc. There is a great sense of family and togetherness. It is truly a highly functioning team, and management is focused on making sure people enjoy coming to work every day.
What kind of perks and benefits are part of the employment package? What is the work-life balance like? Does the company appreciate hard work?
At Yelp, 84 percent of employees often or almost always find the company compensates them fairly, provides special and unique benefits, supports their work-life balance and shows genuine appreciation for their contributions. Another 12 percent reports they sometimes receive these benefits as well, for a combined positive rating from 96 percent of employees in the Great Rewards category.
We have really great benefits, fully stocked kitchens, a barista here and a comfortable work environment.
- 401(k) or 403b plan $1,000 401(k) match per employee per year
- Pre-tax savings account
- Employee stock purchase plan
- Equity grants
PERKS TO MAKE LIFE EASIER
- Free snacks during the day
- Free lunch on a regular, daily basis
- Free beverages during the day
- Free breakfast foods on a regular, daily basis
WORK-LIFE BALANCE BY THE NUMBERS
| 31 days Holidays & vacation days during the first year of employment
|| 60 days Paid maternity leave for mothers
| 30 days Paid parental leave for fathers or domestic partners of newborns as well as parents of a newly adopted or placed foster child
|| 10 days Paid military leave
WORK-LIFE BALANCE PROGRAMS
- Flexible schedule (23% use it)
- Lactation rooms
- Telecommute option (12% use it)
- Elder care resources
I am able to take time off from work when I think it's necessary.
People are encouraged to balance their work life and their personal life.
We work remotely from home and are trusted to do our day-to-day responsibilities. And we are given full reign or creativity to create our own promotions, events, activities, etc. that pertain to each of our markets no matter where we are in the world.
HEALTH INSURANCE COVERS
- Medical Care
- Dental care
- Mental health care
- Fertility treatments
- Medical coverage for transgender related health procedures
- Domestic partner insurance coverage
- 100% company-paid short/long term disability and core life insurance
- Vision care
- Alternative treatments, such as acupuncture, homeopathy or chiropractic
- 100% Company-paid health coverage for employees
- 77% Company-paid health coverage for dependents
- 30 hours/week at which part-timers receive health care coverage
ONSITE HEALTH BENEFITS
- Subsidized offsite gym memberships
What inspires employees' company spirit here? Do people stand by their teams' work? What impact do people have outside the organization?
At Yelp, 88 percent of employees report that they often or almost always carry meaningful responsibilities within the organization and are proud of their accomplishments, community impact and the company's reputation in the world. In addition, another 9 percent report that they sometimes experience this pride as well, for a combined positive rating from 97 percent of employees in the Great Pride category.
Yelp links consumers with businesses. While users can explore Yelp reviews and services for free, the company makes money mostly by selling advertising on its website and mobile apps to businesses. Yelp had a monthly average of 89 million unique visitors who accessed yelp via their mobile device in Q3 2015. ComScore has rated it as a Top 25 U.S. web and mobile property.
I'm proud to tell others I work here.
I believe in what we stand for, the ethics of Yelp and the visions of our CEO and upper management. It's a company that puts its employees first -- our mental and physical health, our achievements and accomplishments. We are rewarded and treated like we're a major part of the Yelp family, which is really true.
Supporting the Community
- Yelp's board of directors established the Yelp Foundation, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to support community and small business growth by making grants to local nonprofits that are actively engaged in those initiatives. In 2015, the Yelp Foundation granted $1.2 million dollars to 14 local nonprofit organizations such as KIPP Bay Area, Playworks Arizona, Great Lakes Academy Chicago, and Friends of the Children New York.
I feel good about the ways we contribute to the community.
Yelp is a household name, and it's taking the world by storm. So many people rely on it to find businesses around them, and it's playing a big role in helping businesses (both big and small) reach their target customers. Because of this, there is a great sense of pride that comes with saying that I work here and knowing that my work here is making a difference.
How easy is it to talk with managers and get the information I need? Will managers listen to my input?
At Yelp, 87 percent of employees say they often or almost always experience a free and transparent exchange of ideas and information within the organization. Another 9 percent sometimes have this experience as well, for a combined positive rating from 96 percent of employees in the Great Communication category.
Yelp has the challenge of communicating with 1,962 employees spread among four offices in the U.S., but employees say they get the information they need. Nine out of 10 or more employees say their managers are approachable and easy to talk with and that Yelp leaders makes their expectations clear. Eighty-eight percent say managers will give a straight answer to any reasonable question and nearly as many (87 percent) agree that managers keep them informed about important issues and changes.
It's great working in an open environment and not closed off where people fall victim to 'cubicle fever.' It's never quiet or dull, which keeps everyone's energy in check and striving to achieve their full potential.
What are managers' leadership strengths?
At Yelp, 86 percent of employees say their managers often or almost always act with integrity and care, are competent in their positions and provide clear directions and vision for the organization. Another 10 percent say their managers sometimes display these characteristics, for a combined positive rating from 96 percent of employees in the Great Bosses category.
Yelp employees widely appreciate the fun and friendly atmosphere that their leaders encourage as well as their open style of management. Employees paint a portrait of leaders who demonstrate integrity and effectiveness. An overwhelming majority of employees (95 percent) say they believe their managers are honest and ethical in their business practices. Nearly as many (94 percent) say their leaders are competent at running the business. And 91 percent say managers have a clear view of where the organization is going and how to get there. Nine out of 10 employees also say managers’ actions match their words, that leaders deliver on their promises and show a sincere interest in their teams as people, not just employees.
Management is extraordinarily committed to getting the best out of each employee -- knowing us as individuals and celebrating our unique gifts. They are truly committed to respecting all of us with dignity.
Great Perks and Programs
- Free Food: Yelp HQ has a barista onsite to make specialty coffee drinks. Yelp kitchens are also stocked with snacks, breakfast, and lunch choices.
- Stocks: All full-time employees at Yelp receive equity upon hire and are offered a stock purchase plan.
- President's Club: As a thank-you from Yelp, those who perform in the top 10 percent of the sales department are invited to the President's Club, which includes an all-expenses-paid trip to a Mexican beach resort.
- Weekend Celebrations: Every Friday at 5 p.m. Yelp employees get together to toast and celebrate the week's end.
Great Rated! collected feedback from Yelp employees via an anonymous survey. Following are common reasons employees said they appreciate their workplace.
"I work remotely, and I am always impressed by how much freedom and flexibility Yelp gives me. They don't micromanage but rather tell us as employees that they trust us to make the best decisions for the company as a whole. This allows each employee to use their strengths effectively and strategically execute the best possible plans for their community. I feel as though I have the best of both worlds, because I have the freedom of being an entrepreneur but the support of working for a company."
"I think it is really unique that our CEO comes to work every day and sits on the open floor. Also, we have a barista! This is so cool. You can easily grab a great cup of coffee with a team member."
"Incredibly friendly and inviting place. They want to make you into an excellent sales person by constantly teaching you to improve your skills. Sales is a difficult job, but they make the work environment a place where you can feel more relaxed and fully capable of doing your job."
"You are never micromanaged. Yelp hired you for a reason and believe that you can do the job they hired you for. It is also a fun environment. They ensure that you have fun, and they understand that our job is not always easy. They make sure that you know your work is appreciated."
"I feel tons of support from management and my peers every day. Everyone cheers each other on and celebrates their wins together. I can truly say that I enjoy everyone who works here and that it is an environment in which I want to come to work every day."
"There is always music playing in the background on the speakers to make it a fun, happy place to work! We are always celebrating holidays with fun parties, dress-up days or catered foods!"
"I love how the company has spread to an international scale but still manages to maintain true to its identity. No matter where you go in the world, you will always feel a sense of community and belonging in a Yelp office. I visited the London office briefly earlier this year and felt that despite being across the pond, I still could feel the same Yelp culture that we have in SF HQ."
"It is an extremely fun place to come to work. Coming right out of college to work for a company like this was always what I hoped for, and it has lived up to all of my expectations."
"Management makes sure everyone is healthy and happy. They definitely go above and beyond any expectations as an employer."
"We play a difficult game of 'yes and no' daily. I think that the office provides quite a few distractions to help yourself get back into the mindset that you're looking for to be successful here. Whether that's Ping Pong, billiards or video games, there are quite a few things to help yourself get back to comfortability mentally."
"There's nothing like the sense of camaraderie and teamwork within our team. I wake up excited to go to work. I feel valued, and my manager listens to me and responds to issues within reason. The sense of ownership of what we are doing is tremendous, and I'm proud to say I work here. My colleagues are my friends, and I'm able to pursue skills and goals without feeling stifled or micromanaged. There's a clear sense of satisfaction with what we are doing as a company, and I'm excited to continue working among some of the brightest people I've known."
How to Get Hired
We asked Yelp for some inside information on how to get hired at the organization. Here is what they had to say.
What key characteristics tell you a prospective employee will be a great fit for your company?
We look for a combination of experience and potential when hiring at Yelp. A great candidate is one who is not only a great fit for the role, but also embodies the spirit and mission of Yelp. A positive attitude sets great candidates apart from good ones, as well as a tenacity to go above and beyond the status quo. We’re also looking for people that we just plain get along with. Since we will be spending lots of time together, we want employees to be motivated and challenged by each other in a way that makes being at work a positive experience.
What can prospective employees do to get your attention?
Want to work at Yelp? Show us how you embody some of the core Yelp Values: Play Well with Others, Be Unboring, Be Tenacious and Be Authentic. Candidates should tell their story and give an insight into their personality through a cover letter and the interview process, especially if they can show a passion for local businesses or a personal experience with Yelp that was impactful. Prospective employees should take a thoughtful and clear approach in their resume, demonstrating both relevant skills for the position and an ability to clearly communicate. Our employees come from very diverse backgrounds, like community managers who were lawyers and a sales account executive who was a professional cheerleader. This experience can be very powerful if a candidate is able to clearly demonstrate how it prepared them for a role at Yelp.
Are there any unusual or especially rigorous steps of your hiring process that candidates should be aware of?
Since it’s important to us to hire people who will fit with the Yelp culture, our interview process can be lengthy and may involve meetings with both prospective teammates and people they would work with in other departments. Most roles also include role play or “homework” - anything from written assignments to coding or building with the Yelp API. This is an opportunity for us to see how a candidate would perform on the job and also give them a direct line of sight into what it would be like to work in a particular role. That way, we’re all on the same page about what a job entails, and we can be sure a candidate who accepts a position is excited about the work ahead of them.
Are there any positions or types of candidates you are particularly focused on hiring in this coming year?
Yelp focuses on promoting from within (about 80 percent of managers companywide were promoted into management), and we’re also growing steadily, so we’re looking to hire for many entry-level roles in the coming year, including sales account executives, community managers, software engineers, user operations associates and recruiters, of course, to help us find all the right candidates! We’re looking for new college graduates, people with multilingual skills, a diversity in backgrounds and engineers who can develop on a range of platforms.
What should interested candidates do to find out more and get started?
Interested candidates should learn as much as they can. Check out our blogs, social media sites, press page and careers page with employee profiles and job role videos. Sign up for the Weekly Yelp email newsletter to get a feel for what Yelp is all about through weekly local business and event recommendations. Candidates have lots of opportunities to meet us face-to-face, too. Students on campus can find Yelp at career fairs, and we also host many events at our offices, like tech talks and recruiting open houses. Also, if you know someone who currently works at Yelp, reach out! Employees are often happy to talk to others about what it’s like to work for Yelp and recommend them if they’re a good fit. We have an active employee referral program that accounts for a large percentage of our hires.
Want to work at Yelp? Visit our careers page: www.yelp.com/careers
||43Average number of applicants per opening
|90218Applicants in past year
||487Openings in past year
|13%New hires by employee referrals