How to Promote A Tech Culture Across All Departments
Acquiring and retaining great talent is best achieved by creating a company-wide culture of learning.
Yet at many tech startups, “hiring the right talent” usually refers to software developers, especially in the earlier phases of the company, and the focus tends to be on building the tech culture they prefer and/or expect.
Developers might make up the largest percentage of your company – at least, right off the bat – but it can mean that other departments may get overlooked.
In order to create an integrated tech company where all teams (product managers, project managers, designers, marketers, etc.) are operating at maximum potential, employees across departments need to learn to work efficiently with one another and value each team member’s role.
This article explores solutions for better integrating non-technical departments with the technical team to create a holistic tech culture that transcends department lines.
What do we mean when we say “tech culture”?
We associate this with flexibility, autonomy, creativity, and the ability to move quickly on initiatives.
Offer the Same Perks to Everyone – Flexible working hours, the option to work remotely, and respect for “working in the zone” are all examples of a more tech-focused company culture. While these perks tend to be suited for developers, they should be embedded into the culture of all departments.
Cross-Pollinate Teams – Provide opportunities for team members in different departments to collaborate. For example, you could create an autonomous, cross-functional structure within the larger team, set up weekly all-staff meetings with breakout groups, and/or schedule company offsites to allow teams to intermingle. Taking a look under the hood of each department improves understanding of the integral role every team plays in the company at large.
Proximity Matters – Don’t isolate different departments by physical location in the office. Where possible, position team members from different departments close together to establish a more collaborative, cross-functional office environment.
Establish Profit Centers – Each department should have its own operating budget, giving employees a sense of ownership and the freedom to demonstrate how they play an integral role in the company. Different departments should collaborate on important decisions, like staffing, even when the budget is ultimately owned by one department.
Create an Open Culture – Communication and idea sharing are key to creating efficiencies across departments. Every employee, across all departments, should feel like they have a voice so it’s important to lay a strong foundation for a transparent culture. Inevitable problems can then be identified and resolved before they spiral out of control.
Model Behavior from the Top Down – Employees look to leaders to set an example, so creating an inclusive culture that permeates all departments must start at the highest level in the company. When c-suites value all team member contributions, a ripple effect is generated that can be celebrated by all.
When employees in every department feel valued, they work more efficiently and their job satisfaction helps create a strong tech culture. To help your startup establish and grow a tech culture that is adopted by all departments, look to hire talent – not just on the development team – that both meets the position criteria and makes a great tech cultural fit.
Author: Kathryn, VP of Marketing
Devetry partners with clients to identify critical needs and build custom software. Understanding client needs comes first. Choosing the right technology comes second. Learn more.