News & Views

Remote First & the Fnality Ways of Working: Part 1

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In the first in a series of blogs, the Fnality People & Talent Guild will be sharing some insight into our ways of working as we strive to create a high-performing and supportive work environment for our team. 

Covid-19 has forced a lot of companies into new ways of working, and Fnality has been no exception.   

The last few months have allowed us to take our approach towards building a high performing and supportive work environment to the next level, and as a result we’ve pivoted to what we’re calling a Remote First work environment. It’s still evolving but it’s been a really interesting and exciting journey for the company, so over the next few weeks we wanted to share some updates on what we’ve been working on and what our vision for Remote First is.   

The Background:   

As a relatively new company, we aren’t encumbered by traditional work setups. We are an agile organisation (every single team member is part of a multi-disciplined agile delivery team, not just our Tech and Product team members, but everyone from Legal, People & Talent, Finance and Commercial too), and our flat structure allows us all to collaborate effectively across the company.  

Prior to lockdown, we already had a flexible work policy in place which allowed employees to work at home whenever they wanted, but the reality was that on most days, most people were in the office. This meant that if you were dialling in from home, you almost certainly weren’t going to get the same experience as attending meetings in person.    

Trialling for Lockdown:  

We trialled all our systems with a compulsory work-from-home day a few weeks before lockdown was officially announced by the governmentwhich allowed us to test that the company could function with everyone working remotely. Because we were already well-equipped with cloud-based collaboration tools (Atlassian, Zoom & Slack in particular) everyone adapted with ease. In fact, most people didn’t come back into the office before the official lockdown was announced - although many of us later regretted leaving plants and keyboards and chargers behind… they say hindsight is 20/20!  

Return to Business As Usual’?  

Once we’d been in lockdown for a week or so, and had seen how easily everyone adapted to working in totally new ways, we quickly decided we didn’t want to return to business as usual, or even worsestart bandying around terms like the new normal. We seized the opportunity to build an even better work environment than we had before, not just for during lockdown, but permanently. Just like that, the first seeds of Remote First were planted.  

We surveyed all our employees, contractors and consultants to get their feedback on remote working during lockdown, and gathered suggestions on what we could do moving forward.  

Our Remote First Principles:  

We identified 2 main principles that we decided to build Remote First around 

  1. An equal playing field for all - this means that everyone has the same opportunities and experience whether they prefer to work in the office or at home, or a mix of both. All our meetings and ceremonies should be set up so that everyone can participate equally no matter their location. Inclusion and employee wellbeing have been at the heart of all our Remote First decisions.   
  2. Increased productivity - as an agile organisation, we already understand the clear outcomes we are working towards and have the tools to measure them. We fully believe that Remote First should not be the same as working from the office and should help us to increase our productivity and reach our outcomes even faster.   

With these principles in hand, we bought people from all over the company together to work on the next steps. In the next few blog posts in this series, we will share some of the steps we took, and what we have learned so far with regards to Engagement, Productivity, Collaboration, Tooling, Onboarding, Employee Wellbeing and more! 

Topics: Insider, Fnality, Views, people, inclusion, Remote First, Ways of Working, remote, wfh

Rachel Mason

Written by Rachel Mason

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