Recruiting and Rewarding for Performance at Alpine Immune Sciences
Recruiting, Onboarding, Policy and Process Development, HR Tech
About Alpine Immune Sciences
Alpine Immune Sciences develops innovative immunotherapy to help treat people suffering from autoimmune disorders, cancer, and other diseases. Their deep expertise in immunology has shaped their unique approach to engineering the native immune system to fight disease, creating new potential therapies and contributing to the arsenal of treatment options for the medical community.
Alpine had been outsourcing its HR, with mixed results. The leadership team had long recognized that the company’s most important resource is its people, and that business success is inextricably tied to people strategy. Their overarching goal was to create the right environment for people at all levels—from non-technical temp workers to scientists and VPs—to feel valued, and to do their best work to move the business forward. They needed a more personalized approach to HR to accomplish their needs.
The company’s new CFO, who had previously worked with Resourceful, recommended Resourceful as the right partner to take excellent care of their people during a period of rapid growth.
From day one, Resourceful worked to develop a clear understanding of the business strategy, to ensure that all initiatives and recommendations were aligned with that strategy. The lead consultant focused on building trust with company leaders who had been unsatisfied with previous HR partners, by paying close attention to the details and ensuring consistent communication and follow-up.
After working closely with the Alpine team for nine months, the lead decided to take an extended sabbatical, but not before ensuring that the perfect replacement had been identified, that a detailed transition plan was in place, and that the hand-off went as smoothly as possible.
Given Alpine’s commitment to building a strong culture, one of the new lead consultant’s first priorities was hiring. She worked with the team to ensure that every step in the process, from interviewing to onboarding, was working well to support the company’s goals and to get the right people in place. When it became necessary to end some temporary positions, she ensured the process was both compliant and respectful.
“When we’re bringing someone on, I think a lot about the ‘how,’ and how to make them as productive as possible, as quickly as possible. We are ready for them, from the first interview through onboarding.”
Resourceful worked about 60% on site and 40% remotely, planning as many in-person meetings as possible during the in-office days and handling issues that come up when working remotely via phone and email. The team kept communication consistent and proactive, staying in close touch with company leaders to solicit feedback about what was working and what needed attention.
A priority for the leadership team was to match the skills and interests of employees with business needs, and the Resourceful team helped evolve the company’s performance and development programs to facilitate that goal. Employees now have the opportunity to articulate what they want to achieve, how they would like to grow, and what they need to succeed.
Another area of focus was developing a bonus program. Resourceful worked closely with the team to quantify what individuals need to accomplish and to create a framework to ensure that hard work is rewarded fairly and consistently.
Because Alpine’s leadership team was so organized and so committed to valuing its people, Resourceful demonstrated significant impact during the engagement, which lasted nearly two years. In addition to instituting and standardizing onboarding, bonuses, and mid-year reviews, Resourceful helped coach the team on how to handle promotions and establish clear cultural norms about what it takes to advance. At an individual level, the lead consultant was able to help a manager successfully change the course for a struggling employee. Resourceful also helped Alpine add modules to its HRIS system to improve benefit administration, improve onboarding, and codify employee roles and levels.