More than words, part II: 6 Chicago tech companies whose cultures empower employees to do their best work

by Michael Hines
May 30, 2019

Building a strong company culture is about more than celebrating big wins with boat cruises on the Chicago River and ensuring the kitchen refrigerator is never out of LaCroix. While celebrations and sparkling water are important, many techies also look for companies with cultures that empower them in their roles and allow them to work with intent.

In this two-part series you’ll hear from Chicago tech workers at companies of all shapes and sizes about what makes their company cultures unique — and the real impact it has on their day-to-day. Continue below to read part two of this series.

 

Braintree Chicago tech jobs

If you’ve made a purchase online, on your phone or in a store then there’s a good chance you’ve interacted with Braintree’s technology, which powers payments for a wide variety of companies. Senior Engineering Manager Aaron Brager said that, when it comes to culture, a commitment to diversity and inclusion and “asking why” is what sets it apart.

 

How is your company’s culture different from what you’ve experienced before?

Many companies talk about diversity and inclusion, but Braintree has a dedication that other organizations of our size don’t. With amenities like full-time D&I employees, sponsorship and conference budgets, sign language classes, norms training, a coaching program and over $5,000 available to every employee for educational assistance, Braintree does more to make the technology workplace accessible to people from diverse backgrounds than many others.

Braintree also has a culture that’s deeply supportive of curiosity and intellectually stimulating challenges. All employees are encouraged to “ask why” to any co-worker at any time. Software developers also have “open dev day” every other Friday where they can explore new ideas, contribute to open-source software, learn new skills and teach each other.

 

Many companies talk about diversity and inclusion, but Braintree has a dedication that other organizations of our size don’t.

What impact does that have on your work?

As a software engineering manager, one of my top priorities is attracting and engaging with curious people from diverse backgrounds to help build and maintain Braintree’s innovation, experience and scale. I also make sure our team members are growing individually, and Braintree’s culture provides many resources for their career development.

 

Adage Technologies Chicago tech jobs

Adage Technologies is a web design and development firm that specializes in e-commerce and whose offerings include marketing automation, digital strategy and UX/UI design. Recruiter Amy Mason said the company’s culture is defined by the open-mindedness and welcoming nature of its team and its respect for work-life balance. According to Mason, having such a well-defined culture makes it much easier when it comes to assessing potential candidates.

 

How is your company’s culture different from what you’ve experienced before?

The most wonderful aspect of Adage’s culture is how welcoming and open-minded people are. Adage’s culture doesn’t waver on remaining respectful, empathetic and humble. People here are dedicated to solving problems, supporting one another and working with integrity. Adage also makes work-life balance a priority, which is completely different from my previous experiences. Employees are given flexibility with core hours and work-from-home options, which makes it easy to work together, be productive and have a life outside of work. Adage’s down-to-earth employees and their drive to get it done make it a special place to work, learn and grow.

 

The most wonderful aspect of Adage’s culture is how welcoming and open-minded people are.

What impact does that have on your work?

As a recruiter, it’s important to find candidates who fit with our culture, meaning people who share our core values. Hiring people who do the right thing and have empathy for others is really important in keeping our culture positive and collaborative, because it’s our employees who bring our culture to life. Having a strong culture makes it easy to identify which candidates will thrive in our environment. In turn, recruiting for a company where employees genuinely enjoy coming to work each day helps us to attract more great candidates.

 

All Campus Chicago tech jobs

All Campus works with colleges and universities to launch and manage online education programs designed to attract engaged and passionate students. Assistant Director of Enrollment Tiffany Parker said she joined the company in large part because of its culture, which aligned with her own values and provided her work a sense of purpose.

 

How is your company’s culture different from what you’ve experienced before?

When I first started at All Campus back in 2015, I wanted more than just a paycheck and good benefits. I wanted to be challenged, to feel like what I did mattered and to contribute toward organizational growth. It was important for me to join an organization that not only celebrates individual successes but team successes as well. Luckily, I can say that I come to work happy most days because I truly enjoy what I do and the people I work with. It was really refreshing to contribute to a culture defined by core values that are consistent with my own focus on caring for others, optimism and having fun while exceeding expectations.

 

Our culture sets clear expectations for how we should collaborate and function as a team, encouraging us to excel in our roles and communicate candidly with one another.

What impact does that have on your work?

The culture at All Campus provides a sense of purpose for me and the rest of the enrollment team. When employees understand how their responsibilities fit into the organization’s overall goals, it allows us to work with intent. Our culture sets clear expectations for how we should collaborate and function as a team, encouraging us to excel in our roles and communicate candidly with one another. We have an atmosphere of camaraderie that enables us to succeed in our enrollment objectives and make a difference in the community through service projects. I believe that employee happiness boosts productivity and reduces turnover, and that’s what I’ve experienced here at All Campus.

 

DCG Chicago tech jobs

Direct Commerce Group is a digital agency that helps companies grow their online sales while protecting their brands. Account Manager Morgan Rosemann said what makes the company’s culture unique is its emphasis on creating an environment that enables employees to thrive in their roles while also having fun.

 

How is your company’s culture different from what you’ve experienced before?

I have nothing but good things to say about the culture at DCG. It’s always a joy to go to work. They say your coworkers will feel like family, and they aren’t lying. Direct Commerce Group does a great job of bringing the team together with various events like games and happy hours, birthday celebrations and free lunch the last day of the month. The snack bar is always stocked, and the coffee machine also makes lattes. Everyone here is friendly, and they understand that when the team succeeds, we all succeed. Management appreciates new ideas and is always willing to listen and offer feedback.

 

Our culture helps us stay on top of current trends and provide the best services to our clients.

What impact does that have on your work?

I think this culture is important for someone in any role. E-commerce is constantly changing, and working for a company that is always willing to adapt and encourages brainstorming helps us all be successful. Our culture helps us stay on top of current trends and provide the best services to our clients. Plus, it doesn’t hurt that it’s fun going to work every day. Working with people who are always willing to help and build the team up creates a sense of community.

 

Snapsheet Chicago tech jobs

Snapsheet helps insurance brokers, adjusters, repair shops and more make the leap into the digital age with its mobile claims solution technology. Talent Acquisition Specialist Jen McClarey joined the team in the summer of 2017, and since then the company has grown rapidly. McClarey said that she has also grown thanks to Snapsheet’s culture, which places a high value on continuous learning.

 

How is your company’s culture different from what you’ve experienced before?

Snapsheet’s culture is reflective of its leadership team. Their innovative ideas have and will continue to propel Snapsheet forward. They set high standards, challenge themselves to always “find a better way” and reach beyond their comfort zone. They charge us to do the same. We truly have a problem-solving culture driven by curiosity, grit and support through both successes and failures.

 

My favorite part about Snapsheet is that I’m continuously learning and developing because I can tackle challenges I wouldn’t necessarily be given at other places.

What impact does that have on your work?

The leadership team’s mindset is embodied by every Snapster. We are all expected to find and create a better way by taking ownership of our work. My team encourages innovative ideas and gives me continuous feedback to come up with the next great thing. My favorite part about Snapsheet is that I’m continuously learning and developing because I can tackle challenges I wouldn’t necessarily be given at other places. At Snapsheet, we trust each other to go with the best idea. From the day I started, almost two years ago, Snapsheet has grown and so have I.

 

 

Maropost Chicago tech jobs

Maropost’s cloud-based and data-driven customer engagement platform is used by companies to connect with customers across multiple channels. Director of Demand Generation Megan Florida said the company’s commitment to collaboration and communication, particularly between its sales and marketing teams, have a major impact on her work.

 

How is your company’s culture different from what you’ve experienced before?

When I was considering making the move to Maropost, three things stood out. The first was the company’s fearless marketing leader, who not only knows what goes into an awesome marketing campaign but also how to build an awesome team. Second was the product. I know a strong tool for marketers when I see one, and I knew that if I was going to make the change from sales to marketing software, I had to really believe in the platform. Maropost’s product blew me away. Then there was the hungry sales team.

 

Our sales and marketing leaders keep the flow of communication constant through regular touch points and outings.

What impact does that have on your work?

When there is misalignment within an organization around company goals, usually the department hit the hardest is demand generation. We have revenue goals, logo goals, lead generation goals and so much more. If we aren’t on the same page with our sales team, it can start to feel like we’re not even part of the same organization. I could tell right off the bat that this would never be an issue. Our sales and marketing leaders keep the flow of communication constant through regular touch points and outings. We are always aware of and able to support each other’s efforts. This type of environment makes me excited to come to work every day.

 

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