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PAN industry job report: What to expect in your first week at Shutterstock

Here at we run job ads for photo agencies on our Jobs page so we thought it would be useful for PAN readers to know a little more about their first week with a particular agency, first up this week Shutterstock.

PAN: Once a candidate is successful securing a new role at Shutterstock for the first time, what can they expect their first week to look like?

Shutterstock: The first week experience for new Shutterstock employees is a full schedule of onboarding, meeting new colleagues, and learning the ins and outs of the business. Many new employees begin their Shutterstock journey at the NYC headquarters office in the iconic Empire State Building (ESB) for a week of onboarding.

We also have a Shutterstock buddy program that matches new employees with existing ones to help engage new team members and provide a fun onboarding experience. As a buddy, you help new hires meet team members across the organisation, tour the neighbourhood with a coffee trip or two, provide tips like common slack channels, how to navigate the office to find conference rooms and printers, and of course have someone to cheers with at our company happy hours.

PAN: Do you provide any life/work balance benefits?

Shutterstock: A healthy work/life balance is very important at Shutterstock because we are an entrepreneurial company and depend on the innovation and focus of our team. Bringing in fresh ideas, curiosity, and excitement on a daily-basis is key to our long-term success. Every individual is different in how they choose to strike that balance and we encourage our employees to take full advantage of all the great benefits we offer to help maintain a healthy balance.

For example, we offer a number of on-site activities to help employees refocus, de-stress and take care of their well being including weekly lunches, surprise snack attacks, yoga classes twice a week, and bi-weekly massages.

Shutterstock invests heavily in its employees also by offering benefits including a £540 annual fitness reimbursement, as well as a £3,800 annual tuition reimbursement for continued education. We also bring in guest speakers and host seminars on site for professional development to help employees grow in their roles and their careers. Furthermore, Shutterstock encourages employees to support nonprofit organisations that are important to them through Raisedby.Us. This corporate giving program uses the Bright Funds platform to allow employees to select nearly any charity in the world to donate to, and Shutterstock will match up to £150 per employee annually.

One of the most highly anticipated company events is the annual “Bring Your Kids To Work Day,” which is a great way to recognise that many of our employees have growing families. The day includes a full roster of events planned for the kids and parents including ping pong, face painting, music and dance classes, and even a kid-friendly lunch menu of chicken fingers and macaroni and cheese for the entire office.

In addition, every year we host an annual hackathon for our employees, Hack to the Future. During the global event, everyone has 24 hours to form teams, develop an idea, and collaborate on a tool or feature that they can show off to a judging panel. These hackathons are a great opportunity to get back to basics. Shutterstock Tab is one of our products that is a direct result of one of our hackathons.

PAN: Welcome pack on the desk ?

Photo: Here is your day 1 welcome pack at your Shutterstock desk, nice!

Shutterstock: All employees are provided desks that are fully equipped with the computer, software, tools and resources they need to perform well in their job functions. Welcome packs include desk supplies, lots of fun swag and their own Shutterstock customer account!

We also provide new hires with a picture frame and instructions to make a personalised name plate using Shutterstock Editor, our in-browser editing tool. This gives employees an opportunity to start using Shutterstock’s products right away to create something fun and personal to them.

PAN: Does the agency encourage staff to move to different roles in the company?

Shutterstock: We have a number of outstanding examples of people who found their way (and purpose) at Shutterstock by transitioning roles within the company. It’s important to us to put people in a position to succeed, and to work with them to make it happen.

PAN: Will staff be able to work from home? – is this encouraged or not on the agenda?

Shutterstock: While most teams are expected to work from the office, Shutterstock strongly encourages all employees to take vacation. Our paid time off policy offers all employees up to 21 days off.

PAN: Are there any social or sports clubs at Shutterstock?

Shutterstock: In addition to the fitness reimbursement, we also participate in the annual JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge, which is a 5k team race in numerous cities including London. We also host happy hours and quiz nights in the London office. These are great opportunities for employees to wind down after work to enjoy fun activities and get to know their co-workers.

PAN: Commuting: if I cycle to work or go for a city run at lunchtime are their shower facilities?

Shutterstock: Yes, shower facilities are provided to employees at the office.

PAN: If photo people would like to work for Shutterstock how do they get on your radar?

Shutterstock: At Shutterstock we’re building sophisticated tools to help the world experience images and videos in a more beautiful way. We believe that the harmonious union of design and technology can influence global communication. Anyone who shares that vision and is interested in joining the journey should check out our job openings here.

PAN: How many staff courses will I be expected to attend in the first 6 months?

Shutterstock: At Shutterstock, we are continuously seeking ways to spread cross-functional knowledge to our truly talented global team members. These learning opportunities are especially useful for new employees to get more familiar with the company and even get facetime with the executive team. Our Breakfast Series consist of roundtable open discussions with members of our leadership team designed to be informal chats to get to know team members, ask questions and learn about our business. We also have a 101 Series where employees gain insight into a specific area of the business, learning from fellow employees and subject matter experts on everything from Music Licensing and Editorial to Photography, Vectors and Illustrations. Additionally, some departments such as Sales and Customer Service have specific trainings throughout the year to learn about new products, and to support customers.

PAN: What are ‘normal’ hours of business at Shutterstock HQ London?

Shutterstock: The typical working hours for most of our staff is 9am to 6pm local time, but there are plenty of opportunities within and outside of working hours that contribute to a healthy work/life balance.


PAN: Thanks Siobhan, good to kick off this feature with some solid answers!   

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