While some businesses still believe in a strict 9-to-5 schedule, many tech companies have opted for policies that make it easier for employees to create a better work/life balance.
A few years ago, this might have been a fancy office with a ping pong table and a massage chair, but as recruiting becomes harder and harder, several companies in the Silicon Beach area have created policies designed to make employees as productive and comfortable as possible.
At El Segundo edtech company GoGuardian, a 9-to-5 workday isn't part of the business's culture. Since the company was founded, they have celebrated a policy where employees can work from just about anywhere.
"Our policy has remained the same since company inception,” said Tyler Bell, Head of Talent for GoGuardian. “Happy employees are more productive and collaborative.”
According to a report published by Deloitte, 75 percent of millennials would like to have the option to work remotely or do more remote work and 51 percent believe working remotely has a positive impact on productivity. At the time the report was published, however, only 43 percent of millennials reported some sort of remote working policy.
For these reasons, Culver City-based marketing tech company SteelHouse gives employees as much freedom as possible.
“SteelHouse has a simple policy: work from wherever you want,” said Kathleen Prior Louis, Head of Talent. “The company benefits by fostering a culture that creates loyal, hard working team members, and the team benefits by enjoying the flexibility of an unrestricted working policy.”
Whether it be the traffic, the rent or the startup hours, the LA tech scene is ripe with potential stressors. Because of this, more and more companies believe that by offering some sort of "work from home" policy, they can, at least somewhat, alleviate their employees' stress levels. According to a report published by Willis Towers Watson, stress accounted for 75 percent of American employers' top health and productivity concerns.
For Amobee, offering a policy that allows workers to work from home is more than a chance to keep the workers happy.
"For the employee, it’s an opportunity to reside in an area that affords the best standard of living based on their personal preferences," said Michael Bright, Manager of Talent Acquisition.
Of course, the reasons why so many companies are uncomfortable with offering more structured policies lies with the belief that employees are more productive in an office setting. While every employee is different, and many do prefer to work from an office environment, the prevailing belief, at least among tech companies, is that letting an employee choose where they are most productive is the best policy.
“Our team members love it – and more importantly, respect it,” said SteelHouse's Prior Louis. “Everyone understands the perk comes with responsibility, and all strive to hold up their end of the bargain when they work remotely.”
As companies continue to adopt more structured policies to allow their employees to work from outside the office, the goal of eliminating stress is still very evident.
"We’ve had someone optimize a social campaign while sitting on the grass in front of Stonehenge and another person conducting a demo while visiting the Island Kingdom of Tonga," said Prior Louis.
“Happy employees are more productive and collaborative,” added Bell. “It's a mutually beneficial policy where everyone wins.”
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