Lensrentals Powers Personalized, High-Performance Culture



Industry Retail/eCommerce
Location Memphis, Tennessee
Customer since 2017
Employees 150-300
Zenefits solutions
Benefits, Compensation Management, Payroll, Time And Scheduling, Core HR, Performance Management

Founded in 2006 by Roger Cicala, Lensrentals is the largest online rental provider for photography, videography, and lighting equipment and accessories in the United States. Headquartered in Memphis, Tennessee, with a satellite office in Nashville, Lensrentals ships gear to customers in all 50 states and also provides in-person pickups and returns to local customers. Experienced, empathetic and efficient Lensrentals staff members set the business apart with great customer experience ratings.


Lensrentals’ business growth is powered by an efficient sales and delivery infrastructure; but by 2017, company leaders realized they needed an equally efficient infrastructure to power its people operations.


Company founders chose Zenefits’ People Platform for its all-in-one solution to unify, automate and provide a clear picture of all of its people operations from one place.

Snapping in a Smart, Efficient People Program

Lensrentals launched its use of Zenefits in November 2017 with the HR portion of the Platform, which was initially run by the company’s executive assistant to simplify onboarding, background checking, plus time & attendance tracking. Less than a year later they added benefits administration with support from Zenefits’ certified broker partner, OneDigital.

With Zenefits, the company transformed its people infrastructure from a sea of Google documents and spreadsheets but knew they needed more. Four months later, they hired their first HR leader, Katherine Owens, who brought big company experience in recruiting, payroll and performance management —and a healthy curiosity to learn and lead an evolution in LensRentals’ people operations.

“I was attracted to Lensrentals because of its healthy, growing business and how it prioritizes its people,” says Katherine. “People are unapologetically themselves here. That is amazing—. especially for someone in HR.”

I used Zenefits for my own onboarding, right from my phone. Paperless onboarding has changed my life!

Katherine Owens, HR Specialist

Katherine wasted no time helping to advance the company’s people-first culture. Within her first few months on the job, she developed Lensrentals first company-wide review process and used Zenefits Performance Management to power both annual reviews and 60-day check-ins. She also leveraged salary data in Zenefits Compensation Management tool to ensure that the company was paying competitive and fair wages to all its people.

She also uses Zenefits “all day, every single day” to cover all of the company’s people program needs from checking Time & Attendance records for payroll, to tracking time off, to ensuring their benefits program is ready for their traditional heavy summer hiring season, to ensuring roles are accurately represented by titles in the company organization chart, on Zenefits.

Community Expertise for an HR Team of One

“I came to Lenrentals from bigger organizations, where I’d been part of bigger HR teams using other HRIS systems. I quickly recognized two ways that Zenefits could help me do more, more easily.  First, the product is so very different from older, clunky systems that made it hard to find what I needed: with Zenefits, all I need is in there, and easy to find. Second, in Zenefits’ online customer community, ClubZen, I am able to ask, answer and tune in on best practices.

As an HR department of one, and still relatively new in her career, Katherine actively looks for resources and perspectives to help her.  “I often refer to SHRM (Society of Human Resources Management) for HR guidelines. But it is documentation-based, vs. ClubZen, which offers real, interactive conversations with other users and experts.”

In her first week on the job, she asked a question in ClubZen on Worker’s Compensation. “I got not just one answer, I got lots of great feedback and awesome ideas. From then on, I’ve checked in every day: for my specific needs and to see what other people are posting. I’m learning from other companies– like open enrollment ideas–that I would love to use for our business.”

One thing no one ever told Katherine about a role in HR is the sheer quantity of questions she would get every day. Today, she uses patience, empathy and Zenefits to help her help each of the people in her organization thrive.


Editor’s note: Katherine went from Zenefits Newbie to Ninja in a few short months. In fact, she is the first Thought Leader Award winner in the ClubZen online customer community, where customers exchange ideas, best practices, and tough HR questions daily.