Impressive Team Members
The biggest draw to working at any organization is you feeling a connection with the people you’re working with. It’s just human nature.
People are internally, intrinsically motivated. You want to feel like you’re on a team all working towards a common goal and that you don’t want to let your teammates down. There an incredible sense of camaraderie at BuildZoom and we want to continue bringing on people who inspire us and can draw inspiration from us. On paper, our team members are incredibly impressive. Collectively, we have graduates from Ivy League and top 20 schools, MBAs from the best business schools, and years of experience working at large corporations, investment firms, and successful startups. Our expertise is recognized externally as well. For instance, Issi Romem (who we call our Economist in Residence) is frequently quoted and referenced by major publications like the Wall Street Journal or the New York Times. Aside from everyone having a high degree of cognitive ability, we are also a very emotionally intelligent group of people. We put a lot of emphasis on good communication and building relationships, both of which are musts for our future hires. You can read a little more about who we are or if you’d like to meet us, let us know.
Health and fitness are a core part our culture.
There is a lot of interest in fitness, nutrition, biohacking, and meditation across all teams at BuildZoom. Whenever possible, meetings are converted into walking meetings or standups, though engineers typically won’t have many meetings to attend. We have unlimited PTO, and engineers typically arrive between 8am and 10:30am, and leave between 5:30pm and 8:30pm. No one is keeping track of that. The way we see it is, the goal is to drive the success of BuildZoom forward, not clock hours.
We all realize that being healthy and happy make us more productive at work. Currently, we don’t think anyone at the company has many unhealthy habits, including over-working. (Well. Maybe snacking. Some us do eat a lot of snacks here.)
Eats Lunch Together
A good litmus test for company health is whether people eat lunch together or not!
It’s well known that meetings can stifle an engineer’s workflow, and while we can share company-wide news through newsletters and Slack channels, we’ve found that the best way to improve the “glue” is to let it happen organically over lunch. For example, an engineer might overhear our operations team complaining about a particular contract and connect the dots to a recent feature push that may have been the root cause. Every day, when our catered lunch arrives, everyone stops working to eat lunch with members of their own team and connect with people from other departments. This is the time for spontaneous collaboration and cross-pollination. Some companies underestimate the value of having everyone eat lunch with their peers. We don’t.
Our goal is to provide homeowners with a free, public resource to help them better understand what’s happening in their neighborhoods.
Our database now contains every licensed contractor across the U.S. – over 2.5 million of them. Users can search our database, drilling down into categorized contractor profiles which are enriched using government data from state licensing boards, Better Business Bureau ratings, and more, as well as customer reviews. We want to build a service for homeowners and contractors, so we’ve left the subscription-based, members-only model that Angie’s List uses, and are instead offering them free access to our database and user reviews.
Our seating reflects how much each department collaborates with one another.
Engineers, analysts, product, and interns all sit together and are interspersed. Our product requires expertise in multiple fields and it’s really at the intersection where we build. Teams are constantly working together and making use of the various whiteboards we have around the office, stationed in open spaces for all to see. It’s apparent when you walk into the office that information flows naturally and teams don’t feel segregated from one another. Similarly, there’s no sign of hierarchy as our leadership works alongside their team members.
Has Internship Program
We invest in a strong internship program that allows junior and senior engineers learn from one another.
Having an internship program is completely symbiotic. From the perspective of an intern, you’ll work closely with a small team of 10 engineers and be exposed to the many sectors within engineering. Getting real-world experience before graduation helps students crystallize what they’ll pursue post-graduation. Plus, interns will leave BuildZoom with projects that build their personal portfolios.
From the perspective of more senior engineers at BuildZoom, our internship programs provides growth opportunities in learning how to manage and delegate project tasks. Furthermore, we believe that while we teach, we learn. Bringing an intern up to speed and teaching an intern about our tools and application is a powerful vehicle for learning. We currently have 5 interns: 1 designer, 1 product, and 3 engineers.
High Employee Retention
People leave their jobs when they outgrow them. Here, we provide you with the chance to outgrow current jobs and grow into new ones.
Our regular 1-on-1 meetings are important in keeping managers understand what people’s motivations are and what opportunities there may be. There is a lot of autonomy and free to reign to work on whatever you want. If you have an idea, prove it, and then present it to the founders or make a case for why the company should invest further (via hires or more resources). In fact, we are currently working on developing an Entrepreneur in Residence role too. Perhaps someone on the team has an interest and expertise in something, but there isn’t really room for a promotion it. We’d assign them a high visibility project with the idea that if it goes well and they want to turn this into their own company in a couple of years, we can give them the connections, support, and network they need to seek investment and get it off the ground.
We have an open door policy that’s pretty literal.
Our conversations are out in the open and the one large conference room we have has walls made of glass. There are no secret meetings and people tend to take meetings in open spaces. Once a month, we also have a more formal demo day where the company meets and anyone can share anything they want to with the rest of the company. We prioritize strong communication from the very beginning with how we hire. If you’re interested in joining our team, you should be personable and be able to socialize with all different types of people and personalities. Building strong relationships at the workplace depends on how everyone having emotional intelligence, being articulate when expressing their feelings and opinions, and constantly being open to feedback.