Agile Working at SUSE
Agility and flexibility are at the heart of everything we do at SUSE. Offering our employees more choice about where and how they work has been a focus for us in 2021 and we have successfully implemented SUSE Agile Working program worldwide. To learn more about the program we are talking to Lisa Sherwell and Hayley Blake.
Lisa, VP Transformation & Strategy Management at SUSE, leads a team to enable organizational change with a focus on people and customers. Lisa’s areas of focus include execution of our strategy through enabling effective change to achieve our organizational aspirations whilst ensuring we keep our employees inspired and engaged.
Hayley leads SUSE’s employee engagement function, delivering programs and events to engage and inspire the workforce. With many years’ experience leading internal communications and engagement functions, Hayley has worked across diverse global employee groups in organizations across a range of sectors including Unilever, Micro Focus, G4S, Canon and UK local government.
1. Can you give an overview of the SUSE Agile Working and how it is applied?
SUSE employees worldwide have gone through a self-selection process to choose how they want to work – home-based, hybrid or office-based. Unless their role requires a specific work model, our team members can select the best option for them. This high degree of autonomy gives our team an opportunity to do their work in the most effective way.
Hybrid or home-based employees also complete a workplace assessment to ensure their workspace at home is suitable for their health and wellbeing. To support wellbeing, SUSE provides a range of equipment from ergonomic mouse pads to new chairs and stand-up desks for home-based employees.
In addition to ensuring home workspaces enable good health, we encourage employees, regardless of worker type, to visit our offices where they benefit from our investment in newly designed workspaces that enable innovation and collaboration.
2. How does Agile Working help promote employees’ work-life balance?
Flexibility sits at the heart of the program. To ensure a better work-life balance we are driven by several factors such as:
- SUSE’s global teams span multiple time zones. Working from home provides the opportunity to integrate personal tasks into a traditional working day.
- Time not spent commuting provides more time for leisure, whether that is spending time with family and friends, exercising, or pursuing other hobbies.
- Selecting a worker type ensures employees have the optimum setup and creates an environment that promotes creativity and productivity.
3. How does Agile Working affect the way SUSE operates as an organization?
As a high-growth company, our workforce is also growing rapidly. Our agile approach to work helps us attract the best talent from around the world, spanning more than 30 countries. Agile working helps employees reach more colleagues in more time zones when they need to, through changing their working hours to dip in and out of work
Moreover, employee well-being is highly rated, as work-life balance and the ability to book time out in your diary to run personal errands (such as school runs/caring responsibilities) around your work schedule are encouraged.
Agile working has also influenced the design of our new and/or re-designed offices where there are few or primarily no fixed desks aiming to enable innovation, collaboration and connectivity.
4. Why did SUSE decide to offer Agile Working to its employees?
Pre-pandemic we knew that we wanted to give employees more flexibility. We conducted a workforce analysis to understand our current growth projections and the positions within the organization, where location, time zone, or co-location was important. It became clear very quickly that while we need to be able to bring people together regularly for various activities, for most of the roles there was little compelling reason to enforce exact rules on being in the office. We did however need to have some level of predictability on employee intentions so that we could support them through equipment and offices.
5. What are the long-term impacts of adopting an agile working policy for an organization?
Implementing SUSE Agile Working and understanding where and how our employees wanted to work has given us the ability to foster employee engagement and better work-life balance in this new remote world for the long term.
We will continue working on further increasing the flexibility for our employees with a focus on inclusion and collaboration.
If you are interested in learning more about our company culture and our open positions, visit our careers website here.