We are proud to announce that CrossComm has been selected as a Technology Corporate Award finalist in the Best Tech Company to Work category for the 2021 NC TECH Awards. Hosted by the North Carolina Tech Association, the awards are dedicated to celebrating the best and brightest in North Carolina’s tech sector, and recognizes innovation, growth, and leadership throughout the state. Finalists for this category are reviewed in a competitive multi-phase process and chosen based on outstanding commitment to solid values, great leadership, best perks, competitive salaries, and fabulous workplaces.
Three Ways CrossComm Builds a Work-Life Balance Culture
Being a finalist for the Best Company to Work class is a big deal for CrossComm because it reflects our focused efforts (especially in the past couple of years) towards building an inspiring workplace. This blog post is a summary of some of the actions we have taken to improve our company culture and promote work-life balance.
Update: On November 3rd, CrossComm won the Best Tech Company to Work For award! Thanks to the NC Tech Association for this tremendous honor!
Moving From Success to Significance
Before the pandemic, CrossComm’s founder and CEO, Don Shin, had made it his personal mission to move CrossComm from success to significance. In other words, he wanted CrossComm to meaningfully impact the lives of all who encountered it—from clients, to software end-users, to industry peers, and finally, company employees. Essential to this goal is building a culture that fosters growth, personal work satisfaction, and positive health and wellbeing that extends far beyond the jobs we do. However, like many in the tech sector, COVID-19 forced us to reimagine the next normal.
CrossComm Founder/CEO Don Shin leading a whiteboard session
Protecting employees and their families was the top priority, and CrossComm was among the first companies to switch to a remote work model due to the pandemic. However, this need to socially distance also became an intellectual challenge in which we were urged to put our technological capabilities to the test. As a result, we created innovative ways to promote engagement by building upon virtual reality employee environments for collaboration, and implementing digital platforms to foster and maintain connections as a team.
To further inspire employees during this difficult time, CrossComm sought important projects to help battle COVID-19, lending development talent to build a ventilator splitter app, as well as the 3GoodThings gratitude journaling application for health professionals. It was important to commit CrossComm to these projects, not just because they served a public good, but also because they provided channels for employees to express their own empathy, solidarity, and support in a troubled world. Even now, CrossComm continues to experiment with how to re-define “the future of work” in a way that inspires balance between work and life –– with our driving force aimed at cultivating significance in all we do.
Three Ways to Build a Culture of Work-Life Balance
While achieving work-life balance is always a work in progress, here are three ways CrossComm has approached building a satisfying and enriching work culture.
1. FOSTERING GROWTH AND IMPACT
Ensuring Innovative and Impactful Projects to Work On: In interviews with our employees, they often cite their motivation to work arises from the mission-centric projects we take on. At CrossComm, each potential client-partner project is vetted to meet at least two out of three of the following requirements: necessitates the building of a quality app or software, involves innovation, and has a positive impact in the world. Ensuring we have impactful and innovative projects in our pipeline inspires our team members to feel engaged by learning ways to challenge the boundaries of tech innovation, while solving problems to make a greater impact in our communities.
Fostering Growth Through Learning: Professional growth is a core value in our company and is the reason why we started the “Take 30” initiative. We ask all employees to set aside thirty minutes of their work time each day to learn something new for their professional development. Decades of studies have shown that learning new and different things makes your brain healthier, enhances memory, and compels creative break-throughs. This goal-oriented, habit-motivating program encourages employees to learn leadership models, programming languages, and any skill of their choosing that can be used to enhance team capabilities and inspire work creativity.
2. SUPPORTING PERSONAL WORK SATISFACTION:
Optional 4-Day Workweek and Remote Work: At the beginning of 2021, CrossComm instituted the optional 4-day workweek. We recognized the need to accommodate varying work preferences and noticed that, for some team members, a compressed schedule could improve productivity and boost happiness. Additionally, all employees have the flexibility to work from home. For example, we have had an employee work from an RV as she traveled throughout the country visiting the national parks. No matter the location, team members are provided a secured Macbook Pro laptop or PC equivalent, as well as a wireless keyboard, mouse, and monitor, so that they are supported in the work they do.
Virtual Reality Spaces for Employees: Many of our projects utilize immersive technologies, such as augmented and virtual reality. CrossComm is predicting that these technologies will be revolutionary and wants its employees to become well versed in the emerging opportunities. As a result, every team member is equipped with an Oculus Quest VR headset and is encouraged to use it in the virtual social spaces provided in CrossComm’s XR Connect AR/VR platform. Our XR Connect application redefines and extends what a workplace environment can be, and offers multiple virtual reality landscapes (such as an awe-inspiring lunar landscape) where colleagues have the ability to interact with each other, collaborate on projects, and be inspired by the tech possibilities—despite the physical distance separating them.
Two employees in the CrossComm-built XR Connect VR space
Weekly Virtual Coffee: We are keenly aware that remote work can mean diminished social interactions, and the possibility of employees from different teams having minimal contact altogether. In an effort to foster connections that are critical in the development of team culture, all employees participate in our weekly virtual coffee initiative, which can be done in Google Meet or in our own VR Coffee Shop through the Oculus Quest. The virtual coffee program randomly connects one employee to another so that they can meet up for at least 15 minutes to chat about anything they’d like...preferably not work related.
3. ESTABLISHING POSITIVE HEALTH AND WELLBEING:
Guilt-free Unlimited PTO: CrossComm deeply understands the importance of work-life balance and encourages the use of our guilt-free unlimited paid time off (PTO) benefit. There is no cap on the number of days an employee can take off during a fiscal year. As a way to inspire balance, we like to recognize any of the ways our team celebrates life outside of work by asking them to share their PTO journeys in our Unlimited PTO diaries blog series.
Comprehensive Health Benefits: CrossComm greatly values positive physical and emotional health and wellbeing and offers a comprehensive list of benefits. We pay 100% of employee premiums and 50% of dependent premiums for Blue Cross Blue Shield health plans, as well as Principal dental, vision, and accident. We also provide a HealthEquity Health Savings account.
Benefits for Life Security: Ensuring personal and financial security isn’t always affordable or accessible to everyone. CrossComm pays 100% of premiums for short-term disability, long-term disability, and life insurance. We have also instituted a 401k with safe-harbor, 4% match, and immediate vesting. Further recognizing the need for security in multiple areas of our lives, including for our loved ones, CrossComm provides 100% of family coverage for legal and identity protection.
The emphasis CrossComm places on work-life balance and innovative work environments is because these things reflect our desire to provide a net life-giving experience so that all team members learn and gain something meaningful on their path towards career (and personal) success. If you are a talented individual seeking a new opportunity, we encourage you to visit our careers page to see if there is a job listing you would be a fit for.