At Chewy, Success Strikes Through a Flexible Work Model
In 2022, variety is the spice of life — especially as the palate of the tech world changes.
After working at home for two years, it’s apparent that casual run-ins at the office were missed. Moments as simple as holding open the break room door for a coworker, striking up conversation about last night’s hottest episode, or unwinding on a patio with a nitro cold brew were bigger ingredients of workplace well-being than some previously believed.
Many of us even missed having an office desk to decorate with trinkets — showcasing our accomplishments and displaying mementos of who we are to our teams.
But there are a lot of benefits that remote work helped reshape for the better, too.
Eliminating lengthy commutes gave back productive hours in the day. Family matters could be tended to at a moment’s notice. Furry friends could enjoy sunny afternoon strolls with their owners instead of a paid dog walker. Many employees furnished home offices and created comfortable, focus-oriented spaces. Autonomy at home was also at a high, with employees scheduling out their work days around peak hours that allowed them to thrive.
Today, many tech companies have found themselves asking: “Well, why not both?” In fact, 74 percent of U.S. companies have already embraced a hybrid work model or are planning to implement one, according to a September report by Zippia.
At online pet retailer Chewy, leaders believe a flexible approach is the perfect fit.
“We’ve never been a one-size-fits-all kind of place — and how we approach the ways that we work isn’t any different,” said Lori Bradley, VP of talent and corporate HR. “We know our team members and their pets value flexibility, whether at a Chewy hub connecting with team members in person or sometimes in a virtual setting with a cat on your lap at home.”
Built In Seattle sat down with Bradley to find out more about Chewy’s cultural approach to a hybrid workforce and all the perks that help employees feel like there’s truly something for everyone.
Describe your hybrid remote workplace arrangement.
Over the last few years, we’ve learned about the importance of adaptability and the value of human connection. Perhaps your trusty, furry sidekick even wants to check out an indoor dog park — like the one recently installed at our Boston hub — while you have a one-on-one with a colleague in the office.
Much like our present-day ways of working, we want to continue to enable flexible experiences and cadences that make sense for candidates, team members, leaders and our customers. That means empowering leaders to work with their teams and establish a working arrangement that is best for them, while engaging collaboratively and remaining productive.
We’ve never been a one-size-fits-all kind of place — and how we approach the ways that we work isn’t any different.”
How have you celebrated being back in the office?
Our talent experience and facilities teams partner together to provide our Life @ Chewy programming to team members, which supports team building and helps facilitate opportunities for Chewtopians to get together to collaborate, connect and have some fun. Leaders are encouraged to create intentional and purpose-driven opportunities for their teams at our hubs, such as monthly planning meetings, quarterly team events, community volunteering recognition and company events that support their areas of business. This also includes general team camaraderie such as quarterly company meetings.
Our calendar of events has something for everyone — from the weekly staples of “Bagel Tuesdays” to monthly board game nights, new-hire mixers and seasonal parties, like a recent pizza day and pumpkin painting. There’s always something new happening!