Our team members are 100% remote, spread across 6 countries— for now. We might have a headquarters in the future, but we will always remain remote friendly.
We will provide you with the equipment you need and a co-working space stipend for those who prefer to work outside of their home.
Advantages of Remote
Being remote has lots of advantages:
We have access to amazing people globally. Having a diverse team is a strong competitive advantage (so much that diversity has its own page), and remoteness is an enabler of diversity.
It allows us to think more deeply on better asynchronous collaboration tools and processes, and also on how to maximize uninterrupted work, and to better communicate internally and externally.
Being remote helps us be transparent with our employees, as well as with our users. We communicate primarily through GitHub and Slack public channels, and our roadmap is open for all to see—even this handbook is open sourced. We believe contributions (on how this company can improve) can come from anyone.
Our commitment extends far beyond just public code.
Communication with our team
With team members across a growing number of countries, clear communication is essential for us to stay connected and work together more efficiently.
Therefore, we use asynchronous communication with tools that invite collaboration, commenting, and editing, such as Google Docs for early drafts of internal documents, and GitHub for issues and pull requests.
These collaborative tools help us clarify our own ideas as we put them in writing, and give us all greater insight through the shared feedback. This has been key to our development and growth.
Communication with our founders
Our founders are always sharing their ideas and updates with the team. They hold weekly 30-minute Founders Office Hours during which anyone and everyone on the team can ask any questions they have, ranging from why certain business decisions are made to how the founders manage their own time and projects.
Our founders also post a weekly update and focus on top of mind topics, ranging from what it means to be remote-first with a hub in San Francisco (and more coming soon!) to the thinking behind pricing. They also BCC the entire team on the monthly update sent to our investors because we believe every Airbyter should have access to the same information.
Our founders live our transparency value daily, and do not shy away from questions. If they for some reason don't have a solid answer on the spot, they always circle back with a google doc posted in Slack so the team can provide feedback and ask questions (asynchronous work at its best!), or follow up at the next live session.
We firmly believe in the importance of the maker's schedule. So we only keep meetings that we feel add value. We'll cluster meetings together as much as possible, so our day doesn't get split up.
Every meeting has a pre-defined agenda scoped in a Google Doc, so the team can add questions and comments before the meeting. Sometimes, a meeting can even be cancelled if all issues were addressed in the document.
For instance, we removed the daily standup meeting and now have a private dedicated Slack channel, where everybody posts on what they worked on the previous day and what they’re now working on. Slack enables us to notify people about any blocker and make any progress/blockers public.
Instead of daily standup meetings, we’re doing a new kind of 30-minute daily sync meetings. In a Google Doc, we list topics that team members want to address with the team. A sync DRI (direct responsible individual) selects the topic(s) to discuss with the team. We have a different DRI every day. This enables us to make sure that no topics or ideas are left behind. We detail the content of the discussion and decisions made in this Google Doc, so team members that couldn’t join can still follow what was discussed/decided. This meeting happens 50% in the morning and 50% in the afternoon, so all team members can join them at least 50% of the time.
Team Structure and Talent Density
We are optimizing Airbyte for talent density and small teams.
We understand that the velocity of a team decreases with the number of people in the team. It means that every new hire needs to compensate for that loss of velocity. Therefore, we’d rather have 5 A+ people than 15 B+ ones.
To reduce the communication inefficiencies, we are creating small focused teams. This is especially important with remote talent, as you want to be agile and create tight bounds between people. We encourage people to work in pairs. There’s a much higher probability you will get it right if you’re not the only one thinking about it..
Social Time with the Team
Our teams have virtual social hours on a regular basis, and aim to meet in person 2-3 times per year.
We also have donut chats on a weekly basis, and sponsor monthly company-wide virtual experiences.