Daemon is designed to be an amazing place to work - here are three things we do differently
Today’s job hunters aren’t just looking for a paycheck. They want a company that aligns with their values, and a working environment that supports their growth. Three quarters of UK workers think about company culture when applying for a job, and 57% consider it more important than salary.
Here at Daemon, this is music to our ears. We’re proud of our company culture, and we’ve taken great pains to preserve it as we’ve grown. This is clearly paying off. Best Companies recently named us one of the UK’s 25 best technology companies to work for, and one of the 100 best mid-sized companies across all sectors.
The key to this success is keeping our values consistent. From recruitment to client engagement, we try to put employee wellbeing at the heart of everything we do. Here are three examples of this philosophy in action, and how they come together to make Daemon a great place to work.
Maintaining a strong company culture is a two-part process. As well as ensuring that current employees are thriving, it’s important to make sure that there is alignment to our cultural values with new hires. We also recognise the importance of looking for ways potential new hires could improve and enrich our existing culture with a different perspective.
This adds a new dimension to recruitment. We’re not just looking for the most skilled people. We're looking for personalities and values that complement our own. This is why, alongside the traditional technical interview, we hold a dedicated cultural interview for every candidate. Both interviews are given equal weighting, ensuring that company culture is more than an afterthought.
The other big difference is the interviewers themselves. A lot of tech companies make an effort to interview diverse candidates, but we’re one of the few that insists on diverse interviewers. Employees of any level are encouraged to take part in the interview process, giving candidates a better idea of what it’s like to work here and ensuring that new hires don’t just reflect the preferences of the leadership team.
Finally, we take practical steps to ensure that unsuccessful candidates don’t feel their time has been wasted. We aim to complete the whole process in just ten days from the initial screening call. At the end of this period, candidates will receive either a job offer or personalised feedback outlining the reasons they were unsuccessful.
As well as ensuring that candidates are a good fit, our recruitment process serves a second function. It acts as a showcase for our values, helping us to attract more like–minded talent in the future. Chris McKenzie is our Head of Talent. He explains the thinking behind this:
“The recruitment team is Daemon’s shop window. We’re the first people potential hires speak to, and we don’t take that responsibility lightly. We know that candidate experience has a huge impact on how we’re thought of in the market, and we want to establish a reputation for treating new hires well. I used to run a pub and it’s just like being behind the bar. The first face people see should always be a welcoming one.”
The differences don’t end when we make a job offer. New Daemonites will find themselves working in a way that is noticeably different to industry norms. Most tech consultancies assign new recruits to a client and then leave them there, sometimes for years on end. This is a great way to become an expert in one area, but it’s not a recipe for well-rounded employees.
At Daemon, we take the opposite approach. We shuffle new hires between projects on a regular basis, giving them a chance to try their hand at everything. As Chris McKenzie explains, this is a great learning opportunity for those in the early stages of their careers:
“Our approach to client engagement is designed to give new recruits as much experience as possible in a short space of time. They will have the opportunity to upskill, to try new technologies, to take on different challenges, and to work with different people from different parts of the business. It’s a crash course in all things Daemon, and it’s one of the things that makes us unique.”
Of course, engaging with clients is only part of the picture. Engagement within a company is also vital, and this is another area where we stand out from the competition. We want every Daemonite to feel they have the power to drive change within the business, no matter how recently they’ve joined. This is where our working groups come in.
Working groups are small teams of employees who focus on improving a particular aspect of company life. We have groups dedicated to culture, diversity and inclusion, wellbeing, charity and more, and their work covers everything from holding fundraising events to spearheading awareness campaigns. All of this takes place with a minimum of managerial oversight, ensuring that change is driven from the bottom rather than dictated from the top.
3. North Star ambitions
We believe in giving every Daemonite the autonomy to drive change within the business. For this to work, we need to be sure that everyone is united behind a shared vision. That’s why we created our North Star ambitions.
Back in the early days of the business, our founders agreed on five guiding principles. Each North Star is made up of a title and a short mission statement. By sticking to these, we’ve been able to preserve Daemon’s unique culture as the company continues to grow:
People- To be the employer of choice for those working in our industry
Culture- To be an amazing place to work, turning every employee into an ambassador
Clients- To be client-centric in everything we do
Impact- To have a measurable positive effect on society
Growth- To be lean and efficient in every area, both internally and in our work with clients
These ambitions are not set in stone. We encourage input from employees of all levels, and we’re always open to suggestions for ways we could better achieve our goals. New Daemonites will find a solid framework in these principles, but also plenty of scope for change and innovation.