Starting a new job during lockdown
In April we had the brand new experience of hiring a new member of the team during lockdown.
We started looking for a new developer in February, with help from our favourite recruiting expert, Andy. We hired the talented Josh and expected him to start working in the Norwich office a few months later. But before he could start his new role, the UK went into lockdown and the whole team moved to home working.
For many people due to start a new job before lockdown hit, this was a disaster. People have had offers withdrawn before they've even started, leaving them in limbo between jobs. Luckily, earthware has been set up for remote working for many years, using it to broaden our talent pool by removing geographical limitations. Almost a quarter of our workforce already worked from home full time, and everyone else had the flexibility to do so whenever they liked.
So how did Josh find it?
"I started interviewing for my role at earthware just before Covid hit the UK properly. As March went on and things started to get worse, lockdown measures were introduced and it became very daunting to be starting a new job in April. Would I still be able to start? How would I be inducted? Would I feel like part of the team if I couldn't meet everyone?
Our CTO Brian put my mind at ease and let me know that, with the exception of everyone working remotely, it was business as usual. earthware has embraced remote working for many years before now so they had everything set up already for optimum remote working.
My first several weeks with earthware have been great; everyone is friendly and enthusiastic about the work they're doing, and the development work itself is varied and enjoyable. Although I've not met the team in person, the use of video and messaging tools has allowed me to get to know everyone and I felt like a member of the team straight away, though I do look forward to a trip down the pub with everyone once normality resumes!"
– Josh, Developer at earthware
Josh hasn't met many of his teammates in person, but we still all feel like we know him. We embrace instant messaging and video calling software such as Microsoft Teams and we have regular online catch up calls, from a whole team introduction when Josh first joined to regular online socials.
“Since the recent pandemic has hit, there has been an obvious shift towards homeworking within the tech sector. This of course is excellent news for the workforce. Working from home is one thing, but is it culturally engrained into the businesses DNA? For 95% of business, this is a reaction to a situation, not embracing remote working and collaboration.
"Having worked with earthware over the past 6 months, I would say that in my 19 years of recruiting in the tech sector that earthware had the most culturally engrained remote collaboration strategy. They have practiced remote working for years, regularly assessing engagement through pulse surveys and being open with their team about how to improve. For earthware, remote working and collaboration isn’t an employee benefit, it is the culture and the DNA of their business."
– Andy Almond, Langham Recruitment