SurveyMonkey’s Secret to Attracting Diverse STEM Talent
February 25, 2021

SurveyMonkey’s Secret to Attracting Diverse STEM Talent

Sonya Matejko

How does a company with no virtual recruiting strategy attract 97% diverse candidates to their first virtual recruiting event? By partnering with WayUp.


SurveyMonkey — the leading survey software company that serves over 17 million active users — is committed to fostering a diverse, equitable, and inclusive workplace. Every summer, they invite diverse interns from around the globe to their internship program. 

Before COVID-19, SurveyMonkey primarily sourced intern candidates through in-person interactions such as on-campus events or by attending targeted conferences. However, when those in-person events were no longer possible, SurveyMonkey’s team of two had to rethink how they were hiring and figure out how to remain a competitive option to diverse early-career talent. 

“Historically, we relied heavily on in-person events, and our main priority was continuing to focus on diversity hiring even if we couldn’t attend events in real life,” said Whitney Galindo, SurveyMonkey’s University Programs Manager. 

“We’re a small but mighty team committed to big results, and we knew we needed to find a strategic partner like WayUp to help us navigate this new virtual environment.” 

As you’ll see with the results, by going virtual and partnering with WayUp, SurveyMonkey saw unprecedented D+I numbers while saving their two-person team time and creating a world-class candidate experience virtually.

Read on to learn how they did it by partnering with WayUp. 


Before working with WayUp, SurveyMonkey hadn’t focused on virtual recruiting, and they were nervous about the new reality of going 100% virtual. Going in, they had three main challenges as they set out to continue recruiting top, diverse talent in the new virtual world.

  • SurveyMonkey wanted to expand its reach to attract more diverse STEM talent. The SurveyMonkey team was proud of their progress on D+I, but they wanted to do more — which is why they put a stake in the ground and put out public diversity goals at the end of 2019. They made these goals public to hold themselves accountable as a company. With WayUp, they were specifically looking to broaden their scope of diverse candidates and recruit from schools they previously didn’t have the bandwidth to recruit from for their Software Engineering Internship Program.
  • They wanted to spend less time with unqualified applicants. SurveyMonkey’s challenge wasn’t volume — it was quality and diversity. With only two people on their early-recruiting team, SurveyMonkey needed a seamless strategy that would help them meet their D+I goals. They were consistently seeing high applicant volumes but needed help screening applicants and automating manual tasks so that they could focus more time on qualified diverse candidates.
  • SurveyMonkey wanted to shift their in-person events to virtual. In 2019, the team at SurveyMonkey hosted a successful game night at their headquarters that attracted an astounding number of diverse students. They wanted to host a similar event in 2020 to continue driving diverse candidates to apply to their roles and experience their brand. The catch? The event needed to be virtual — a first for the company.


With WayUp’s help, SurveyMonkey innovated their on-campus recruiting strategy to a virtual recruiting strategy. By going virtual, SurveyMonkey attracted more diverse candidates around the country and streamlined their campus recruiting process simultaneously.

“2020 was a really challenging year for our team, like many, but I’m really proud of how we’ve been able to pivot and still have an extremely successful internship program and fall recruiting season. WayUp definitely helped us navigate the uncharted waters of COVID, and with their strategic partnership, we’ve been able to completely transform our recruiting initiatives to a 100% virtual format.” - Whitney Galindo 


  • WayUp hosted a CRM and Company Profile for SurveyMonkey that hosted open roles, fun facts about the company, Virtual Events, and branded content like their intern culture video. The best part? The page required little effort from the SurveyMonkey marketing team — it was built to be “plug and play.” The SurveyMonkey team also connected their careers page with their WayUp company profile to better highlight internship opportunities to prospective candidates.
  • WayUp’s automated, targeted sourcing efforts attracted qualified and diverse candidates from a broad range of colleges and universities across the U.S. for all of SurveyMonkey’s open roles and Virtual Events.
  • Every candidate who applied to SurveyMonkey’s software engineering internship through WayUp went through an automatic digital screen — based on criteria provided by the SurveyMonkey team — and received a reply within 24 hours letting them know whether they were moving forward in the interview process (regardless of the result). This ensured that SurveyMonkey would only receive qualified applicants directly into their ATS.
  • WayUp moved ONLY highly qualified candidates to the SurveyMonkey team and provided them with detailed real-time analytics that showed candidate drop-off rates by self-reported demographic information like gender, ethnicity, major, and more.


The WayUp partnership helped SurveyMonkey broaden their reach to more diverse STEM talent, spend less time on unqualified candidates, and attract diverse students from all over the country to their Virtual Events. Going virtual netted huge results for SurveyMonkey — especially when it came to diversity.


With access to WayUp’s candidate database of 6M students and recent grads from across 7,100 campuses, SurveyMonkey was able to reach students at 298 schools — a number they’d never be able to visit in real life. And it gets better. 44% of their software engineering intern applicants were Female Computer Science majors and 22% were Black or Hispanic — a significant increase in diversity than SurveyMonkey had seen when they recruited on campus and a major testament to the power of a virtual strategy for D+I hiring.

“WayUp really helped us broaden our reach to attract talent that we might’ve never had the chance to meet if we stayed with our traditional strategy. Ultimately, we were able to increase our diversity by being laser-focused with our partnership with WayUp,” said Galindo. 


Thanks to WayUp, SurveyMonkey only needed to review applicants who were qualified — saving their two-person team an expected 145+ hours during the fall recruiting season. Going virtual also helped SurveyMonkey’s team automate many of their administrative tasks, which, in turn, gave them more time to spend with qualified candidates and ensure that those qualified diverse candidates were making it through the funnel. 

With less time spent on manual tasks and using WayUp’s D+I Analytics Dashboards, SurveyMonkey could review candidate drop-off data in real-time. For example, they had one screening question that they saw Female candidates were failing at higher rates than Male candidates, so in real-time, they worked with their WayUp Customer Success Manager to reword the question to ensure gender parity.

“WayUp helped us focus on qualified applicants, who happened to be very diverse, so we could reduce the amount of time we were spending on unqualified candidates,” said Stephanie Castro, SurveyMonkey’s Associate University Programs Manager.

According to Castro, less time reviewing applications meant more time for SurveyMonkey to focus on hiring qualified diverse candidates and building out their top-notch program.


SurveyMonkey needed to shift their successful in-person events to virtual by creating events that were just as engaging and left attendees wanting to apply to their Software Engineering Internship Program. WayUp helped the team do just that with a virtual trivia night. 

With a WayUp Virtual Event, SurveyMonkey was able to provide high-touch branding moments without needing to step foot on any campus, and they reached 125 students across 70 schools in the U.S. by doing so. Every attendee was also automatically pre-screened based on qualifications for their Software Engineering Internship Program.

“We could never imagine going to 70 campuses in one fall recruiting season,” said Galindo. 

Not only did WayUp’s Virtual Event help capture the audience SurveyMonkey was going for, handle the marketing, and manage the technical production, but it resulted in attracting more diverse candidates. In fact, 97% of attendees were Black, Hispanic, Mixed, or Female, and 90% of them said they had not connected or met with a SurveyMonkey recruiter before the event. 

As a bonus, the Virtual Event helped elevate the candidate experience, too — 100% of students walked away feeling excited about opportunities at SurveyMonkey, and the candidates themselves had great things to say about the event. 

“Appreciated the talk about diversity at SurveyMonkey. I've yet to hear so much consideration for minorities at a company, and I was thrilled to learn about all the resources this company provides.” —  Cathy W from Duke University 

Are you interested in learning more about our partnership with SurveyMonkey? Watch the full webinar below.

Want to learn more? Reach out to with any questions or comments!

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