What attracted you to work at your company? How did you know it would be a good fit?
I was drawn to Ardoq’s reputation for innovation. While unfamiliar with the Enterprise Architecture domain, I had experience working on a SaaS product and knew the challenges of having large organizations as a customer base. Although I’m not based in Norway, I could apply because Ardoq had seamlessly switched to remote or hybrid work due to the pandemic. During the interview process, I had the opportunity to meet with several developers and was impressed by their expertise. I managed to keep our cofounder (then CTO, now CEO) "entertained" enough to make him late for his next meeting!
What are you working on right now that inspires you?
This quarter, our team’s OKRs have been related to regrouping and catching up as we address some UI and tech debt while preparing to take on some bigger challenges in the next quarter. It’s been a time to slow down and regroup while we onboard a new product manager and full-stack developer – they need time to settle in and become more comfortable. I’ve also had a chance to dive back into code after a long period dedicated to hiring and polishing the onboarding process for new engineers.
What do you value most about your company’s or team’s culture? What sets it apart from other places you’ve worked?
In my first week in Ardoq, I managed to crash the production, and I’m still around to tell the tale! It was used as a learning opportunity, and now we are a lot more vigilant when a new engineer is encouraged, as part of onboarding, to make their contribution to the codebase in their first few days in Ardoq. Management and colleagues are very supportive, and it’s a high-trust environment where I’m not afraid to say, “I don’t know,” or “I need help with this.” Having the freedom to give my best and not be afraid of failure is really liberating and refreshing.
What’s one thing you would want a candidate to know about what it’s like to work at your company?
Returning to the high-trust environment: we have flexible working time. You have the option of using your accumulated hours as time off. In addition, during the dark winter months in Norway, people are reminded to utilize async communication and go out during the day and catch some sun rays instead of a screen glow.
As far as unique traditions go, on Fridays, we have “Ardoq WINS!” a company-wide meeting where we give shout-outs, celebrate each other’s success, and up our GIF game. Comic Sans is a celebrated font choice and bright colors are encouraged. Ending a week on a high note and sharing inspiring stories across all departments is an excellent way to wind down from the work week.
What are some ways your company or team supports and stays connected to people who are working remotely?
My team is distributed across six countries, three time zones, and one war zone! Deliberate overcommunication is the key. All of the meetings are recorded to be re-watched at a preferred pace. We have daily optional meetings with no agenda. People show up to talk about whatever comes along, and since we are in the work setting, work-related topics arise. The team gathers on-site every 6-8 weeks and plans visits to the Oslo office around company events. The whole company—European and US branches—went to Iceland last year in April, when the pandemic was over, to meet colleagues in person since we grew in numbers significantly during lockdowns.