In the face of economic recession, it is clear that this year has been challenging for many businesses and individuals. Increasing costs, uncertainty and many turbulences in the markets are familiar also to Zure.
For us, this has been a good test for our Roar at Challenge mentality. As we are fully employee-own, in booming times we are maybe not the most rapid in business growth. However, focusing on our community of extremely talented employees and enjoying solving unseen problems have kept us on the right track during more challenging periods.
We are really proud that in times like these, Zure gained the Future Workplaces certification – for the fourth time in a row . The certification was earned through an employee survey Siqni. The survey collects information on factors that are most the meaningful to employees and how well they are realized at the workplace.
What actions did we take to ensure our employee engagement during this year? I will highlight some of our focus areas.
Especially in these volatile times, the importance of openness has grown. We have gathered feedback from everyone in our monthly company retros, and the message has been clear: people want to know frankly where we are.
We have put in extra effort in developing and communicating our sales pipelines, financial statuses, and other important metrics for our monthly Zuredays. We have iterated new ways of working around forecasting and are currently working on making resourcing even more transparent. We want everyone to be on the same page where we are now – and where we want to be going.
This year has been quite different to previous ones. Longer investment decisions and more competition for new cases means we are not in the same business landscape as last year.
For us, it was a call to turn up the volume. Although “culture eats strategy for breakfast” (P. Drucker), this year it has been about ensuring that bottom-line does not eat culture for breakfast.
In the beginning of the year, we gathered all our Leads together in finding new ways of developing our business: new ways of organizing, new sales activities, new business development. At the same time, our teams have continued delivering excellent customer value, from AI to IoT projects, Design to Landing Zones. The persistence paid off, and in August the business continuity looked good enough, so we were able to recruit our first-ever Talent Acquisition Partner and start to speed up also recruiting.
Zure CEO Sakari often reminds us that Zure is not a family. Our employees have families and close ones – and that is the priority number one. Work is only work.
Even though we are not a family, we are a community. We are proud of the survey results, especially when our Strong work community scored 86/100 and A workplace where I can truly be myself as high as 90/100. We are extra proud (yet not surprised :P) that Skillful colleagues topped at 94/100.
As a community, we want to take care of our own, by all means we have. This year it has been about ensuring stability for everyone. It was also shown in our employee questionnaire, where for the first time ever the Stability & continuity of workplace rose to top 10 most important factors (scoring 89/100). So we have turned up the volume in sales, in creating new processes and ways of working to make sure all of us have that safety in the work life.
The Roar at Challenge continues
It would be nice to write a blog post saying “Okie dokie, here was the challenge, here is how we overcame it and now everything is fixed”.
Of course the challenging times continue. We need to keep active, keep transparent and keep humane, in order to have the prerequisites to have our community strong and be part of the Future Workplaces next year.
It’s not easy, but with the right team it is possible.