Kayla was ready for a change.
“I moved from Cary to Ohio to be near family right before the pandemic, and soon after, my manager left SAS for a new opportunity,” she explains. “The effects of 2020 were setting in. I love recruiting in a high-growth environment, and with 2020 being a year of pivots and lower hiring volume, I started to feel ‘itchy’ for a new challenge. What was my future direction, my next step?”
After careful thought and introspection, she began applying and, ultimately, landed a role outside of SAS, in a different industry.
But for Kayla, Director of Early Career Talent Acquisition, SAS is home. Months after her departure, Kayla returned to SAS with a fresh perspective and renewed excitement for the future.
Read on to hear about her journey as a “boomerang,” her role as Director of Early Career Talent, and why she’s excited about the future of SAS.
Becoming a boomerang
A few months into her new role at another company, Kayla began rethinking her decision to leave SAS. “I missed a lot about SAS” she reflects. “Especially my coworkers, the rapid pace of the tech industry, and the empowerment to pursue my curiosities beyond the scope of my role.”
She’d stayed in contact with her SAS connections, and those connections turned into another opportunity: business need and Kayla’s interest in returning to SAS aligned, and months later, Kayla began her second “first day” at SAS: “Returning to SAS felt like coming home,” she shares.
Excited for the future
Days after Kayla’s return to SAS, Jim Goodnight announced SAS’ intention to be ready for an initial public offering (IPO) by 2024. With that news came change and transformation for nearly every part of the business. “The Great Resignation is here, and candidates have options. SAS is growing, and our team has a unique role to play in preparation for our IPO and in helping secure the future,” Kayla explains.
“Our job is to bring in the right talent as SAS prepares for what’s ahead. This is what I love – recruiting for growth. I’m passionate about creating the strongest and most diverse workforce to help SAS on its path to success,” Kayla states. “There’s truly never been a more exciting time to work at SAS, and I love getting to share that with our candidates.”
Loving the #saslife
It’s often said that “the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.” For Kayla, the adage rings true. “At SAS, curiosity is encouraged, and I’m empowered to grow my career and take on special projects beyond the scope of my role,” she says. “And as a mom, I have the flexibility I need to live a balanced life.”
Beyond these, though, is what we all know is the most special part of SAS: “The people here are incredible,” she shares. “There are no others I’d rather work alongside each day.”
Outside the office
When she’s not attracting the next generation of top talent for SAS, Kayla enjoys spending time with her 2-year-old daughter, Caroline, family jogging in the Cleveland Metroparks and feeling the burn in hot yoga and spin class.
Interested in a career at SAS? Join us on our journey towards an IPO in 2024. We’re hiring across the company, from HR to Marketing to technical roles. Explore open roles and learn more about the #saslife.
I love reading these types of stories! Thanks for sharing, Kayla :)!
Of course! All thanks to Alyssa for sparking the idea!
Kayla, we are SO happy you are back! It's an honor and privilege to call you a coworker, mentor and friend. So glad we had the opportunity to call you home to SAS!
Thank you, Danielle!
We are happy you are back. Your experience "away" will be so beneficial.
Thank you, Sonya! It really has been beneficial. Fresh perspective and a whole lot of gratitude!
Kayla, you rock! T
Thank you so much for sharing your story and the pictures 🙂
It is fantastic that you are back, looking so much forward to working with you again as this has always been a great pleasure
Marlies, it’s an absolute joy being your coworker! Let’s find a reason to work together again very soon!
Kayla, welcome back! Who said, "You can never go home?" 🙂
That’s right Bill! Back home to SAS, and to Cleveland! Hope to see you very soon!
Such a great story and huge win for SAS that Kayla returned
Thanks, Amy! Happy to be your coworker once again. Thanks for all you do to make the SAS employee experience special.
You are awesone 🤩
The feeling is mutual Nelly!
I was hired by Kayla long time ago, welcome back!
Thank you so much Xi! Love seeing past hires thrive.
Well, Kayla, with a name like Woitkowski, you would HAVE to be a fellow Clevelander! 😉 I still miss the Metroparks!
That’s right! Many “ski”s surround me here! You’ll have to pay a visit soon, once the weather turns of course. 🙂
We are so happy to have you back Kayla!!
Thanks Kristin! It’s shining, bright smiles like yours that make the #saslife the #bestlife!
Welcome back, Kayla! Thanks for sharing.
Thank you Stephen! I hope our paths cross to work together again soon!