Chief People Officer


San Francisco, CA, USA

Full time

$99-163k (annually)

People Operations / Entry level

Nov 15

This job is no longer accepting applications.

Who We Are

Founded in 2013, Thistle is an early-stage food-tech startup empowering our customers to get and stay healthy while improving the sustainability of our food system. We deliver delicious, organic, healthy, plant-forward meals, cold-pressed juices, and snacks to customers on the West Coast at the elusive intersection of convenience, health, and sustainability.

We don’t want to be just another food delivery startup. Our focus is on our customers’ health and happiness, and we are revolutionizing how fresh, nutritious, high-quality food is purchased, manufactured, and delivered at scale. Thistle is headquartered in Vacaville, CA, and we are backed by some amazing investors in the Bay Area and beyond.

About The Role

As our first Chief People Officer (CPO), you will lead all areas related to our People - Employee Experience, Talent Acquisition, Culture & Internal Communications, Total Rewards, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Learning & Development, Compliance/Core HR, and our Workplace strategy. As an experienced, collaborative, and hands-on member of the Executive Team, you will design and execute on strategic organizational roadmaps to ensure success at scale and will be relied on for your expertise, collaboration, and influence.

We are looking for a passionate leader who embodies our Core Values to act as a champion of the organization’s mission and to foster a culture that promotes growth, inclusion, and excellence. You will be expected to translate ambitious company objectives into HR initiatives that motivate employees to do their best work and feel proud to work for Thistle as we continue to scale.

Reporting directly to our President and Co-Founder, you will lead a growing team of ten and oversee the development of the People team. Though we have a remote-first approach to work for roles that allow, the ideal candidate will be located near one of our production facilities (Vacaville, CA or starting in 2022, Carlstadt, NJ) and be willing to travel occasionally to other Thistle facilities in Southern California (Long Beach), and the Pacific Northwest (Portland & Seattle).

What You'll Do

People Operations & Business Strategy

  • Develop and execute all people related strategies related to Employee Experience, Talent Acquisition, Culture & Internal Communications, Total Rewards, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, Learning & Development, Compliance/Core HR, and our Workplace strategy with a focus on scalable solutions for an increasingly diverse and distributed team
  • Partner with other leaders in the organization to understand short and long-term priorities; ensure alignment of People team strategy that will meet overall goals of the organization
  • Anticipate growth and headcount needs to ensure appropriate evolution of Org Structure across all functions in partnership with the leadership team
  • Lead strategy aimed at creating a best in class employee experience across the organization
  • Work with the People Ops and exec team to oversee the development of our total rewards philosophy that is motivating, equitable, and rewards a high-performing culture
  • Partner with functional leaders to refine and own company-wide performance management programs, feedback, promotion, and compensation cycles, as well as other critical people programs
  • Oversee new hire development strategy and provide direction to scale onboarding initiatives, maintaining highly rated employee ramp up and engagement metrics
  • Oversee escalated workplace investigations and employee relations or performance related matters and make recommendations regarding employment actions; ensure all matters are handled in an equitable and consistent manner
  • Lead talent management and acquisition initiatives that attract, acquire and develop the best talent in the market
  • Lead internal communication strategy ensuring employees have awareness and are engaged in company initiatives, programs, benefits, and practices
  • Own HR compliance and assess readiness in close partnership with legal and finance on everything from medical, 401(k), FMLA, CFRA, SDI, LOA, EEO-1 filings, 5550s, OSHA, Wage and Hour laws, etc.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

  • Cultivate an inclusive company culture that celebrates Thistle employees’ unique backgrounds and experiences, and that all Thistle employees are proud to be part of
  • Foster a commitment to DEI among leaders and employees leading the way towards an inclusive, and high performing culture
  • Develop robust equity and inclusion training and programs to support employees at all levels in the organization
  • Ensure DEI is incorporated into all aspects of Thistle People operations, from recruiting to onboarding to performance management to promotions and career pathing
  • Determine where policy changes and/or new policies are necessary for our workforce in order to create a more inclusive and equitable work environment

Data, Reporting, and Analytics

  • Lead the development of the HR reporting and analytics function to support effective decision making and business needs
  • Develop key operational metrics and dashboards for the team and monitor key performance metrics; Thistle currently uses Paycom for HRIS/Payroll/Time & Attendance, and Lever as an ATS
  • Use data to develop solutions to support a best-in-class employee experience that supports the happiness of the team

Management and Leadership

  • Lead by example with empathy and compassion, exhibiting exceptional emotional intelligence, communication, and influencing skills
  • Build and maintain high levels of trust and business partnership with all leaders
  • Coach leaders and peers and model a culture where positive and constructive feedback is embraced to evolve leadership and drive company performance
  • Hire, onboard, coach and mentor People/HR team members, and play an active role in developing career roadmaps, succession planning, and full-cycle programs
  • Function as a strategic business partner and thought leader to the Executive Leadership team

What You'll Bring

  • 15+ years progressive experience owning HR/People Strategy within a rapidly scaling environment with a distributed, multi-state workforce comprised of both non-exempt and exempt employees, including progressive experience as a strong people Leader
  • Preferable experience leading mission-driven culture including a manufacturing/logistics population of 1000+ employees; experience in food or hospitality a plus
  • Preferable experience in a venture-backed startup environment, supporting founders and senior leaders
  • Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree in related field (HR, Organizational Development or similar) strongly preferred
  • SPHR certification a plus
  • Knowledge of federal, state, and local employment laws and regulations; practical experience translating those laws into organizational policies and practices
  • Excellent critical thinking, judgment, and decision-making ability, including the ability to weigh the short- and long-term costs and benefits of a potential action
  • Ability to develop recommendations grounded in a combination of data, best practices research, and personal expertise
  • Exceptional interpersonal skills, highly collaborative, with the ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing, across all levels of the organization
  • Attention to detail, multi-tasking, and strong follow-through required
  • Ability to maintain strict confidentiality
  • Proven ability to re-prioritize and work quickly and efficiently
  • Experience in legal, finance, risk management, and organizational development

Who You Are

  • Strong generalist and leadership foundation across all People team functional areas including; recruiting, talent development, organizational development, learning & development, performance management, change management, compensation and benefits, compliance/legal policies, employee engagement, and employee relations, including experience directly supporting founders and senior leaders.
  • Strong collaborator that is capable of building and managing strong working relationships across organizational boundaries
  • Possess unquestionable personal integrity, fairness, and credibility, and the ability to gain the trust of teammates at all levels and serve as a trusted partner to founders and the exec team
  • Hands-on, results-driven, self-motivated, and detail-oriented with the ability to multitask and prioritize in a dynamic environment, while having fun!
  • Low-ego people leader with outstanding communication skills and the ability to coach and mentor direct reports, peers, and leaders on sound talent management practices

Life At Thistle

  • Join a kind, diverse, passionate & driven team of all backgrounds 
  • Generous Employee Discount 
  • First Fridays of every month off to support work-life balance and emotional wellbeing
  • Team-building and Frequent Wellness Events (remote-friendly)
  • Comprehensive health benefits (medical, dental, vision) to fit your needs
  • Flexible time off policy & Parental Leave
  • Competitive salary & equity package
  • Choice of Apple or PC equipment

Our Core Values:  Be Human, Think Bigger, Lead With Purpose, Make A Lot With A Little, and Build the Future.

Diversity, equity, and inclusion are essential values at Thistle. We know we'll do our best and most impactful work when we feel we're represented and we belong. We're proud to actively recruit and hire talented people from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status. You can get some deeper insight into how we approach DEI, along with some statistics on the internal demographics of the company and leadership team, here:

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