Ian McFarlane, Michael Thompson and Jordan Farry from Personio is presented with the ‘Best Company Connection – SME’ Award by Liz Toner, vice president of Global Talent at event partner First Derivative

Personio working to maintain a happy and united workforce

BEST Company Connection (SME) winner Personio is the most valuable HR software company and fastest-growing business-to-business SaaS company in Europe, having achieved a $6.7 billion valuation in October 2021.

Personio is a start-up making HR processes more transparent through the use of tech, and the overarching aim, since it was founded in 2015 has been to allow HR teams to focus on what matters most – the people in a team.

Its software serves more than 5,000 customers, and its team has more than doubled in size in 2021, from 500 employees to over 1,100 – across offices in London, Dublin, Munich, Madrid, and Amsterdam. Its Dublin office alone has 209 employees, expected to reach 254 employees by the summer.

In its application Personio says: “We pride ourselves on our ability to maintain a happy and united workforce through a period of hyper-growth, and throughout challenges such as the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Team spirit is one of our core values and even when working remotely, hybrid, and across different countries, we succeed in keeping up productivity, wellbeing and team spirit by keeping our company connected.”

Its award entry focused on four of Personio’s initiatives launched – Personio’s Remote Working Taskforce; Virtual Health Weeks; Company Culture Week; and its Company Culture Program – which demonstrated how it has been a trailblazer in maintaining company connection and communication over the past two years.

Not only does it boast brilliant products, which it sells around the world, but the company prides itself on its ability to maintain a happy and united workforce through what is a period of hyper-growth

When Covid hit, Personio created a cross-departmental ‘Home Office Taskforce’ designed to ensure it maintained communication in the company from top to bottom whilst everyone was working remotely. It consisted of sub-teams which included a mix of colleagues from all departments and levels, headed by a Captain, who attended weekly update meetings with Personio’s executive team.

To communicate, it created a Slack channel and page on the Personio intranet where employees could find all relevant information. The taskforce had five objectives:

  • Proving ‘Tool Tips’ to help people work as effectively as possible at home with new digital tools and provided ‘Zoom and Slack Hacks’ for efficient remote communication.
  • Teamwork and Leadership: To ensure teams and leaders are equipped with the skills needed to work together effectively, virtual meeting guidelines, tips on how to keep teams connected and ‘Leadership Learning Sessions’ on how to lead teams remotely were provided.
  • Health and Wellbeing: Employees were provided with weekly healthy eating and cooking inspiration, workout inspiration, as well as access to mental and physical wellbeing platforms.
  • Motivation and Fun: Remote events were held, such as picture and video challenges, virtual games and shared motivational home office stories from employees.
  • Childcare: Its Parents@Personio scheme meant parents could work 25 per cent less without any reduction in their salary while schools and nurseries were closed. Guidelines were provided for parents as to how to reduce working hours during this period while financial support was provided for external child care support.