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Hiring From a Distance
Gerhard Schweinitz

Hiring From a Distance: How to Keep Your Culture Thriving When Working Remotely

COVID-19 has seen industries all over the world disrupted, and in some cases devastated. It has forced us all to adapt, and quickly, with significant efforts and resources re-directed towards digital markets all over the world.

As organisations adjust to new and remote ways of working, having a digital presence has become more important than ever. As a result, Contino has continued to grow and hire new talent, since digital transformation is what we do best!

We spoke to Contino’s Director of Talent (APAC), Gerhard Schweinitz to find out what Contino has done to adapt during this crisis and how we've managed to hire 53 people globally since lockdown began in March 2020!

What impact has COVID-19 had on our hiring process?

Contino was fortunate enough to already have full remote capability before COVID-19 hit, with a number of technologies in place including video platforms that enable remote interviewing, so the transition for us was seamless.

Furthermore, we have moved all our face-to-face technology meet-ups to a new virtual format, allowing us to continue to get to know interested candidates safely. A positive to this is that we are now able to attract busy parents and people who live further from the office to attend our virtual events who were previously unable to attend.

How has Contino been able to onboard new starters remotely?

To ensure a smooth start, we delivered laptops and Contino swag packs directly to our new starters’ homes and they were able to instantly have access to all of our systems.

However, while Contino has full remote working capabilities when it comes to the technology, the real challenge comes when dealing with the people and culture side of onboarding. We want all our new starters to feel part of Contino whether they've met us in person or not! But how do you ensure new starters feel part of a team if they haven’t yet met the team in person?

From day one, we ease our new starters in with a comprehensive series of inductions (now virtual!) covering all areas of the business. They’re a great opportunity for new starters to meet other Continis and to ask any questions. We also make sure they’re introduced to their squad early on and where possible, we get them straight onto projects.

Contino Hiring and Onboarding

How have you kept the culture alive and made new starters feel part of it?

The way our business operates was built around cross-functional collaboration. We have our own unique squad model that brings together all parts of the business for every engagement, meaning we all make an impact. With most of the business usually on customer site, we're used to collaborating remotely, so this has been an easy transition for us.

As for the social side of things, we’ve actually put on more activities than ever before– the only difference is that these are now all online. Some examples include: a global quiz, virtual escape rooms, a comedy night, tech debates and meetups, lunch and learns, Friday drinks, Contini Olympics and group workouts, virtual coffees and cooking sessions, squad catch ups and much more.

Con Emmanouil recently joined the APAC team as a Technical Principal. Here’s what he had to say about his experience coming on board during this time.

"Starting at a new company invokes a mix of excitement and nervousness, however starting somewhere new in the midst of a pandemic and lockdown greatly amplifies these emotions. From day one Contino were on the front foot and I was instantly put at ease by all the inductions, socials and the effort people made to make sure I felt like I was part of the team."

We’re still hiring! Check out our vacancies here.

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