Hiring and retaining top talent is a common challenge for organisations. Mark Drysdale, Chief Technology Officer at Flux Federation, tells us how they support their employees at Flux. Flux Federation is the power behind Powershop. Their 150+ employees imagine, design and build software, brands and experiences for energy companies and their customers, all around the world.
Finding great people
Getting the recruitment process right isn’t easy. At Flux Federation it's thorough and we have about a 2% conversion rate. Candidates go through a 5-step process which includes a coding challenge as well as a final stage pair-programming session. Although the recruitment process is extensive, it means we are only hiring really motivated candidates with a drive to work with us. “Everyone who’s gone through it has said it’s been really motivating to know that they’d be working with very passionate developers”.
We hire people with a growth mindset and we’re always looking to build diversity of thought into all our teams. There isn’t a cookie-cutter approach to who we hire; we are looking for passionate people who care about the craft of IT delivery, from a diverse range of backgrounds and walks of life. Diversity of thought truly does drive innovation.
Moving away from a traditional pyramid management structure
Life is not simple so we have stopped trying to simplify our operational structure. Our aim is to facilitate and grow our talent at Flux, by creating cross functional teams, from different backgrounds, who are working to a shared goal.
We have worked hard to move away from a traditional pyramid management structure. Often, management positions are given to those with tenure or who perform consistently within the business, rather than someone who will be an excellent guide, coach and mentor. This is where our crew champions come in. They are people with coaching or leadership backgrounds who are invested in growing people and providing them with the support to be the best they can be. It means that the people leading our employees are really great culture champions. This allows our people to be great Scrummasters, Developers and Testers and to continue to do what they’re really good at and passionate about.
Keeping great people
I would say my role is about being “people obsessed”. I don’t aim to teach people what to
do – I hire smart people and I try to facilitate their autonomy and mastery over areas they love.
We spend a lot of time at work, so it's important to support people to be the best they can
be, whatever that looks like for them.
We hire smart people with the aim to facilitate their autonomy and mastery over areas they love.
Two days a month Flux employees have what’s referred to as 10% time. In that time, they can work to complete whatever they like. For example, if a tester wants to learn how to do code, as well as putting them on external courses we provide them with training in their 10% time. They can sit with other people across the business and learn from them, and they can change teams if they want to.
Our culture relies on what our employees want to achieve. As an organisation, we help facilite this by aligning our staff's intrinsic motivators to Flux strategy.
Mark drives strategy and purpose that employees can align to, he communicates the wider vision for Flux Federation. Having over 25 years’ experience in the tech industry he is an innovator and drives change across tech in New Zealand.
Flux Federation is a client of Robert Walters and we are happy to be able to support them in finding clever people.
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