Committing to Post-Covid "Remote-First" Engineering

  • Heath Hohwald
Engineering

TL:DR

  1. AlphaSights values employees’ work irrespective of geographic boundaries

  2. AlphaSights is well-practiced in remote work — members of our team have worked remotely for years

  3. We schedule social events and “virtual” outings to maintain our team culture

  4. AlphaSights offers an in-office experience in our NYC and London offices for anyone who’d like it (once it’s safe again)

. . .

Covid-19 redefined the working landscape for engineering professionals. Nobody saw it coming, and nobody knows exactly what a post-Covid-19 world will look like and when it’ll happen. It’s natural to start wondering where things are headed — "What if I want to stay remote but the team goes back to the office?" or "What if I want to be back in the office, but the team stays remote?" 

At AlphaSights, we’ve spent a lot of time imagining and planning for our ideal post-Covid-19 Engineering setup. We don't claim to have solved the puzzle, but, leaning on some of our core values like results-orientation and adaptability, we believe our approach balances many competing elements.

Values Based on Results, Not Location

We firmly believe that the contributions an engineer can make are not based on where they sit, but the quality of their work. We want the best engineers, no matter where you’re from, to shape our technology and contribute value to our team. 

Making Remote-First Work Long-Term

As the majority of the working world moved remote full-time in 2020, many teams needed to adjust and quickly figure out how to effectively work remotely. At AlphaSights, we were fortunate: we've supported remote work for years. I myself joined in 2018… fully remote! We’ve had a successful mix of remote and in-office team members, building an international and distributed team pre-Covid-19. Some details have really paid off, like ensuring every meeting has default video conferencing invites. We also enjoy online social events together, such as team trivia nights and puzzle-solving events, that help build a cohesive and collaborative culture. I remember some previous experiences working with an in-office team where I was sometimes left out of meetings and left wondering what was discussed and decided. A successful remote-first team means ensuring that never happens.

Keeping an Optional In-Office Experience

Remote-first doesn't mean everyone is going to be happiest or most productive working outside the office. Some engineers prefer the in-office experience and look forward to our offices opening again. At AlphaSights, the in-office experience is pretty amazing — just ask our NY and London-based engineers!  We’ll support our engineers that choose to work from one of our local offices if they wish. Being remote-first doesn’t mean it’s the expectation — we want everyone to choose what works best for them. For those in-office, we still support work-life flexibility with time dedicated for both in and out of office. We’ve also found bringing remote workers into the office from time to time helps avoid silos and is great for team bonding. I've worked remotely for over a decade, and have always found team collaboration peaks after an in-office visit.

At the end of the day, we want what every good Engineering team wants: to build the best team possible! For us, this means ensuring flexibility, fairness, and clear communication are part of our working norms, both now and after Covid-19. 

Interested in joining us or hearing more? Check out our open positions!