About #Code series
Developers, developers, developers… they are not alone in the IT world. This world is not just for programmers!
And the success of a company, project or product, in addition to good, clean code, is also influenced by the work of other experts. At Merixstudio, we have 4 main departments, which include individual specialized teams:
- Engineering – our Frontend, Backend and Mobile developers, DevOps Engineers, and QA Specialists
- Delivery – Product Design including UI and UX Designers and Project Management
- Business Development – Inbound and Outbound Analysts plus Business Researchers
- People & Culture – including EB, Content, and our HR Managers
- Business Growth – covering fields of Customer Demand Generation, Sales & Marketing Data Management and Business Communication & PR
So let's leave Engineering teams with their code, architecture, and tests, and focus on the other side of creative technologists instead! In the next few weeks, we'll be posting a couple of articles to help you understand better how a real software development looks and who stands behind the scene! Today, we’re introducing the people behind marketing, employer branding, and human resources.
Company culture starts with people
What’s the most valuable lesson that any manager can learn? Is that about setting attainable goals? Is it about giving feedback? Or maybe it’s about optimal team composition? To be completely honest, neither of these answers is 100% accurate, although there’s a grain of truth in every one of them. The lesson that we have in mind is the following: fostering a positive work environment and taking care of employee satisfaction reaps considerable benefits for the entire organization.
If you’re a more data-oriented reader, we have some statistics for you to prove our point:
- according to Gallup, teams that score in the top 20% in engagement show a 21% increase in profitability, a 41% decrease in absenteeism, and a reduction of turnover by 59%;
- as observed by Salesforce, employees who feel their voice is heard at work are 4.6 times more likely to feel empowered and thus encouraged to perform their duties better;
- a report by the American Psychological Association has shown that supporting well-being initiatives at a corporate level increases the company’s chances of being recommended by its employees as a good place to work.
The numbers speak for themselves. These days, where there’s employee satisfaction, there’s business growth, regardless of the vertical we have in mind. Think of software development companies like ours. There are people behind every business activity, be it sales, design, or engineering – and unless they are engaged in their actions, the company is not likely to succeed. We’re well aware of this fact, which is why we put our people first and pay special attention to cultivating positive company culture.
This, however, wouldn’t be possible without the joint efforts of a very unique bunch: the People & Culture Team, who combine business acumen with extraordinary marketing, employer branding, and human resources skills. Ready to meet them and see how they help Merixstudio thrive?
The head that bonds all parts of the team
Running a capable department is not easy, especially if we’re talking about such a diverse team. But let us tell you one thing: Anita, the Head of People & Culture, makes it look like a piece of cake!
Here’s Anita sharing her knowledge during EB Masters Poznań
Anita’s been involved in Public Relations and communication from the early years of her career. Her marketing knowledge is largely based on the valuable experience gained in sales.
Whether you’re specializing in marketing, employer branding, or human resources, you need to understand your target audience. Empathy is key – unless you know why the candidate or the colleague behaves in a certain way, you won’t be able to build a strong employer brand. You also need creativity and courage to present your ideas.
When she joined Merixstudio in 2015, Anita immediately felt like home. Since then, she’s been gaining experience in both digital and traditional marketing, event organization, and campaign coordination. But above all, she’s been in charge of assembling and leading both marketing and HR teams. And to be honest, she’s been as happy as a clam doing that.
I joined Merixstudio as a part of the New Business Team and a year later, I was grateful to learn that I was chosen a Team Leader. In 2018, our structure evolved once again and I was assigned an ambitious task of leading an entire department. I’m proud to say that today, the team is made of 12 skilled professionals who are not only knowledgeable and innovative but also just nice people to work with.
As Merixstudio grew, it was only natural for us to engage even more in marketing and recruitment campaigns, pay greater attention to building a solid employer brand, polish candidate experience, and organize our own events. This list is by no means finished so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the team has been steadily growing and this year was transformed into the People & Culture Department.
As I already mentioned, Merixstudio’s been growing pretty fast and we want every department to feel well taken care of, regardless of how many members it has. At some point, it became clear that the client and candidate-oriented tasks have to be divided somehow to facilitate goal-setting, decision-making, and simply to make our efforts more fruitful. And so we split the old Marketing Department into two: that’s how People & Culture and Business Growth Departments came into being.
Anita likes to compare the People & Culture Department to a well-balanced school class, which makes her the class captain. And she’s perfect for that role for she’s focused on trust and partnership. Working with her, you can expect to get a lot of creative freedom, but you can count on her support and help as well. So if you’re looking for a boss who’s open to various initiatives and creative ideas, sets ambitious goals, and believes that every voice should be heard – you’ve come to the right place.
We didn’t lie when we wrote that our Head is the natural-born leader – even stubborn alpacas do what she says!
Content is king: our Content Marketing Team
Marketing is telling the world you’re a rock star. Content Marketing is showing the world you are one. – Robert Rose
If you ask people about their attitude to marketing and advertisements, chances are you’ll hear many reserved or even negative opinions. To quote just one statistic, seven out of ten people find ads annoying these days. But what if we told you that only a small proportion of marketing is like that – and that there exists an entire category of marketing efforts aimed at answering people’s questions? That’s Content Marketing, and it holds a very special place in Merixstudio’s heart.
Merixstudio’s Content Team is responsible for creating a wide range of content: from social media posts showing what it’s like to be a part of our organization, through videos showcasing our cooperation with clients, to articles that shed light on our processes and best practices. It seems like a lot of tasks calling for diverse skills, doesn’t it? To quote Magda, Content Marketing Team Leader at Merixstudio,
Our content team members are people of many talents as in this job it’s crucial to use multiple communication channels, tools, and techniques to reach particular audiences and goals. But actually, you don’t have to be the best in creating all of the types of content. Our team is complementary and we support each other with our own special skills and knowledge. The clue is to be aware of the clients’ and candidates’ informational needs and picking the right methods to respond to them. Besides, the very vital skills, no matter if it’s about writing or making a video, are a good command of English, efficient organization of work, and ability to build great stories.
The three content marketing musketeers
As you may expect, creating high-quality content that builds trust and connects with the recipients calls or superb writing skills and tech expertise. Luckily, there is no shortage of people willing to share their knowledge in Merixstudio! Here’s what Aleksandra, our Content Marketing Specialist has to say about it:
Openness, that’s what struck me on day one and continues to amaze me every day. When writing about software development, you often need expert insights to make the article truly valuable – and regardless of whether you ask a developer, a designer, or any other specialist at Merixstudio, they’ll be happy to help. And that’s not so common in the industry, so we appreciate it even more.
How about introducing you to Aleksandra, one of the people behind our social media? Ola, being a Content Specialist, works hard to give you the best quality of posts, articles, and everything else we post online.👩💻 And she’s well suited for the job - with her impeccable English, great sense of humour and vast knowledge on content marketing she’s helping us achieve higher and higher levels of publication. 💪 As her teammates also point out, she’s putting everyone to shame with her work ethic and organisation skills by having the most meticulous Google Spreadsheets always being ahead of time when it comes to deadlines. But her work is not the only thing worth noting! Let’s go straight to the point - as you can see, Ola is a proud owner of a very handsome, very big feline, Tybalt.🐈 If his name rings a bell, you’re right - he’s named after Tybalt from Romeo and Juliet. And Ola really loves Shakespeare; she event posts her own reviews of his plays (in English, obviously!).💀 Because if you want to know something about Ola, you need to know that’s she’s quite a bookworm! She’s one of the people we can go it if we want a recommendation for a good read!📚 Ola is quite skilled with pens, both when it comes to writing and drawing!✍️ You can follow her Instagram profile (@pyton_art) to see how talented she is (and how much she loves the Gotham TV-show ;))! She also puts her talents to good use - during our internal auction, she donated her drawing skills for charity! 👏 As you can see, art is close to her heart, and she’s a woman of many skills and colours.🎨 And colourful she is - in the office, you can always bet that she’ll have the most fun slippers and exciting jewellery. Proof of that lies in the photo - as a true fan of all things kitschy, Ola owns the craziest fish-slippers!🐟 Even when she hates herrings with great passion, which is a bit unfortunate and brings us a lot of joy considering the surname of our CEO.😉 And who doesn’t need a bit of joy in their life? If you want to share Ola's passion for books and work with her on your next article, join us - #linkinthebio . . . #merixstudio #merixpeople #poznan #meetmerix #poland #software #softwarehouse
It’s safe to say that we simply write our story together. But the written word is not our only strength. We’re also aware of the power of video content – in fact, videos have become an invaluable tool in presenting our company to clients, the community, and potential employees. Of course, we wouldn’t be able to unleash the potential of video marketing without Karol, the mastermind behind all Merixstudio’s clips, including the ones on our YouTube channel (by the way, don’t forget to subscribe!). What does he think about Merixstudio.
Creating video content at Merixstudio is a pure pleasure. That’s because of two reasons. First of all, it’s a remarkable atmosphere created by people who work here. It makes shooting engaging videos as easy as pie. And secondly, it’s about their passion for sharing knowledge, which allows us to record many vlogs and episodes of our podcast – Piątki po deployu.
A year ago @karol.kaminski16 decided to take a shot and join Merix as a #Content Specialist. Almost right from the start, he stood out with splendid video 📹 and photo 📷 skills and natural-born feeling for visual content. And we couldn’t have left that potential untapped! Karol elevated 🆙 our video marketing to the next level and he still surprises us with new ideas and solutions - just check our Youtube channel to find that out for yourself. Karol raises his skills not only within challenging tasks in Merix but also when creating new episodes of his vlog - @todobienvlog where he combines his passion there the passion for videos and love for Spain 🇪🇸 (in particular for Andalusia). Looking for some firsthand, tried-and-tested recommendations about yummy local food and drinks, most attractive places to visit (and a lot of them are not so obvious!), and great events there? Well, you can’t miss Todo bien to find all of them! And as he is also a huge football fan⚽, Real Madrid has its special place in Karol’s heart. He even had a chance to meet his idols personally! He used to take part in Real’s press conferences during his Erasmus student exchange times as a representative of one of the football websites. What a lucky devil 😈! Finding Karol can be quite challenging since he spends his time in many different parts of our office, making videos in places that suit his particular subject best. And he is damn good at it! Just like at making stars of his film feel comfortable and chilled out. How does he do it? With a huge sense of humor, he undeniably has. Few minutes with him and even the most cloudy day turns bright and easy. Yes, Karol, you’re our ray of sunshine ☀️Always happy, helpful, friendly, and ready to exchange best memes 😄 But after a shoot, Karol has to edit his videos, and then you can meet him by his desk. We won’t point you to the exact one because it’s pretty easy to find. Just look for the one with an artistic mess on it - people with creative minds filled with ideas and hands full of work don’t bother with such trivial issues as tidiness. Duh! 👨🎨🚯
Brand values proved by actions: Employer Branding Team
At Merixstudio, we firmly believe in fostering positive relationships, which is why we work in a culture based on values, cooperation, and team spirit. We are nice people to work with, and we want the world to know about it! That’s why our employer branding activities are targeted at our current employees and those who are yet to join us.
Putting our team first
As the saying goes, teamwork makes the dream work – and it shows not only from 9 to 5 but in numerous after-hours initiatives. One example is Muzerix. As the name suggests, the initiative is all about jam sessions during which our musically gifted colleagues get together to make music and learn to play new instruments. Then, there’s Kinomaniak which provides us with a space to watch blockbusters together and turn into movie critics when closing credits end. This event takes place in Bułgarska, a large stadium-like conference room which can easily turn into our very own movie theatre.
With the announcement of #oscars nominations🏆 came the new tradition of Merixstudio - our own film club!🎥 Every other week we're going to gather at our comfortable Bułgarska room, eat snacks, and watch movies. Yesterday we watched Roma - what do you recommend we should watch next?🤔 . . . #movienight #roma #afterhours #privatecinema #filmnerds #filmfanatics #fun #happy #positivevibes #webdeveloper #webdesign #design #programming #programmer #developer #webdesigner #programmerslife #coding #code #python #reactjs #development #webdev #webdevelopment #webstagram #developer #softwarehouse #merixstudio #poznan
Another instance of cooperation after hours is that of volleyball sessions which take place every Tuesday regardless of season or weather conditions. These and other initiatives help us bond and understand each other better – also at work!
You might be wondering whether we managed to keep the team spirit alive while social distancing. That’s a fair question and we’re proud to answer yes, we did. As we’re a tech-driven bunch, the pandemic didn’t stop us from meeting screen-to-screen. Over the last few months, we engaged in Slack quizzes and online games. We didn’t refrain from having a virtual cup of coffee every once in a while as well! And since the safety of our team is a priority, we’re working on a bigger online integration event – but since it’s a work in progress, we can’t tell you more about it yet 😉
The unique Merix atmosphere is shaped not only by our involvement in after-hours initiatives but also by the way we talk about everything that happens at the company. We believe that transparency is key to trust, understanding, and success in general – which is why our internal communication is so straight-forward yet friendly. And we have Adrianna, our EB Manager, to thank for that.
Here’s Adrianna at one of our events, py_tej
As you can imagine, effective corporate communication is a tricky thing: it calls for sensitivity, versatility, and honesty. Luckily, Adrianna has a way with words and knows how to prevent communication mishaps from taking place. As a result, the authenticity of our internal announcements helps us maintain and build employee commitment and job satisfaction.
Sharing is caring
If you follow us on social media, you must have read that we enjoy sharing our knowledge. To prove that these are not just empty words, we’ll tell you now more about how we do it. Let’s start with the internal workshops. Knowing the significance of public speaking and knowledge sharing, our EB Team encourages us to talk about our accomplishments and passions daily.
If you feel like it, you are free to share your work-related experiences during 15-minutes Lightning Talks. And it doesn’t matter if you want to talk about programming, quality assurance, project management, or marketing – everybody’s welcome because we love broadening our horizons. And if you’ve got an idea for a longer presentation, that’s also fine. Just let us know, and we’ll find the best way to make it happen together – says Adrianna.
So if you feel passionate about your work and can’t help but spread this love, Merixstudio is a great place to do so.
Today our #PMteam started the day with a big dose of knowledge!💪 At their weekly meetings, Piotrek conducted a workshop, during which everyone could learn about #kanban and the differences between the push and pull approaches. (as well as make paper boats⛵)Judging by the photos, Piotrek must’ve also cracked a few jokes, which is essential for your brain when you want to make it learn something before noon! ☕ . . . #workshop #morning #projectmanagement #webdevelopment #lerning #projectmanager #levelup #itindustry #webdeveloper #webdev #webdesign #website #design #programming #programmer #developer #webdesigner #designer #websitedesign #programmerslife:computer: #programmerslife #coding #code #python #reactjs #development
Internal presentations are not the only way for us to share knowledge and passion – we also organize events whose aim is to engage the local software development community. Apart from the obvious goal of building brand awareness and shaping our image as an employer, our meetups serve as a platform for sharing experiences with others. They are also an excellent opportunity to talk face-to-face with people willing to start working with our team. Keep up with them and don’t miss out on the opportunity to #meetmerix at:
- DevCollege – workshops for all wanting to hone their software development skills. During a several-hour-long meeting, the attendees learn about a given technology and use the newly acquired knowledge in practice, e.g. to build an app.
- py_tej and front.radar – informal meetups during which we listen to presentations and discuss tech trends over a pint of beer. Both py_tej and front.radar take place outside of our headquarters, so there are no strings attached. BTW, if you’d like to become a speaker at either of the events, look out for a CFP at the events’ fanpages or simply get in touch with Adrianna!
As we enjoy helping others, we also get regularly involved in charity initiatives. The person responsible for that is the other half of our EB duo: Aleksandra, whose enthusiasm and kindness are quite contagious.
One of the things I love about Merixstudio is how much people are involved in charitable activities whenever we organize something. It allows us not only to have some fun and do something interesting together (starting from internal auctions and ending with building huts for homeless cats), but most importantly we can do some good together.
Did you think we forgot about Valentine’s Day? Well, think again! 😏 This year, apart from our traditional Valentine’s Day mail💌, we decided to chip in and make huts for homeless cats from @fdzanimalia!😻 With the invaluable help of Paweł from @zaklad_makerspace we were able to create five wooden huts🏠 that will house plenty of cats for many years to come! So not only we had plenty of fun making something with our own hands, we also were able to help those in need. And that’s what Valentine’s Day should be all about!❤️ . . . #valentines #valentinesday #sharethelove #loveislove #charity #fundraiser #happy #cat #cathut #homelesscat #zakladmarketplace #diy #adoptdontshop #officevalentines #webdeveloper #webdev #design #programming #programmer #developer #webdesigner #designer #websitedesign #programmerslife:computer: #programmerslife #coding #code #python #reactjs #development
It’s all about the people: Human Resources and HR Business Partner
We already told you that some people hate advertising – and if you’re a part of the IT world, you might have heard that devs are not particularly fond of recruiters either. Many view the HR Specialists as staunch supporters of rules who ruin the fun and never call you back (Does it give you The Office vibes, or is it just us?). But what if we told you that the stereotype is far from the truth?
At Merixstudio, we believe that showcasing company culture is as essential as honing technical skills and that the employee's needs and the company’s business objectives are equally important. That’s why when you meet our HR Managers, you can talk to them about business, frameworks and languages (they’re learning new things about our tech-stack every day), soft skills or just everyday problems.
But don’t get the wrong idea, it’s not that they have the whole day to chat over coffee. It’s quite the opposite because Kasia, Marita, and Ania have their hands full. Recruiting new hires, crafting brand image campaigns, optimizing processes – it’s no joke, their to-do lists are almost endless. Let’s now take a closer look at each of these duties.
You can bump into our HR squad at our events
First comes recruitment, which is the primary focus of our HR Department. As Kasia, our HR Manager and Team Leader says,
At Merixstudio, recruitment never ends. That’s because we’re not recruiting to a single project, but we’re looking for people who’ll join our team for longer. If someone is good at what they do, our doors are always open!
As far as the exact stages of the recruitment process go, Kasia and her team contact candidates through various channels, arrange and conduct both recruitment and informal meetings. It’s worth mentioning that they also know every employee in our company – because if you want to join Merixstudio, they’ll most like the first people you’re going to meet!
But the HR Department doesn’t live by recruitment alone! Signing employment contracts, onboarding and offboarding employees in cooperation with other departments, conducting exit interviews, searching for and analyzing new sources and tools for acquiring candidates, giving presentations at events, building a strong brand of Merixstudio – all of that and more keeps them pretty busy every day.
Here’s Kasia giving a presentation at Info MEET Wrocław
Our HR Team actively supports Heads, Engineering Managers, and Team Leaders. They are always happy to share their knowledge, experience, and thoughts. They monitor the market and competition to be always up to date. Knowing that you shouldn’t be surprised to learn that for the next edition of our Halloween Party, Kasia, Ania, and Marita promised to dress up as The Powerpuff Girls 😉
As we mentioned before, employees’ needs are as important as the company’s goals. If an organization wants to grow, its employees need to develop their skills as well – and it's our task to make it happen. Learning and development, people analytics, and data-driven HR are not just buzzwords for us which is why there’s a place for an HR Business Partner in the People & Culture Team as well. We will let you know a little bit more about this role in our structure soon!
It’s a wrap!
Another part of our #Code saga comes to an end. We tried to tell you as much as we can about our People & Culture Team – although you need to know that no description can do us justice. At the end of the day, there’s nothing like coming to the office and having a few laughs together. Does it sound enticing? Good, it should!
Feel like you’d fit into our People & Culture team? Check out current job openings and give us a shot!