August 14th, 2017 by inflectra
When we started Inflectra 11 years ago we decided that we wanted to create a different kind of company. Instead of chasing Venture Capital firms with the latest hot idea, we focused on listening to prospective customers' needs and building great software. Over the past eleven years we have consistently focused on these three things: Craft, Customers and Culture. So we decided it made sense to take a step back, look at our core values and make sure they truly spoke to these tenets.
The original core values were good but somewhat bland and generic, so our team spent several days brainstorming the things that are important to us and then crafting four values that we think explain to the world why Inflectra is different and why we believe there is a different way to build a software company than the short-term Silicon-Valley approach that seeks breakneck growth above everything else.
A favorite quote of ours comes from a guy named Ricardo Semler, author of the book Maverick. He said that only two things grow for the sake of growth: startup businesses and tumors. We want to be there for you in the long term, so please read our updated core values and let us know if you have feedback...
We love building great software and tools for our customers. We enjoy (mostly!) getting feedback from users for ways to improve our products, make them easier to use, more powerful and better at satisfying their software development, testing and project management needs.
We are in this for the long haul, which is why we have eschewed venture capital over the years. Too many software companies are looking to create something quickly, sell it to an investor and not look back. We have been in business since 2006 and look forward to helping our users 20 years from now.
This approach affects everything we do. We make sure that we’re constantly re-investing our product, refactoring its architecture, changing the front-end, back-end to make sure it’s constantly modern and there is minimal accumulated technical debt. This means that as a user you don’t have to worry that Inflectra products will become obsolete or out dated.
Over the years we have had many customers marvel at our customer service, however for us it has always been strangely simple. We treat customers as we’d like to be treated, we listen to their problems, try and solve them as best we can and even write articles and blogs to spread the knowledge for other users who may have the same problem in the future. We also don’t believe it’s right to charge extra for support, so we don’t – it’s included with all our products!
You can contact us by phone, by email, use our help desk, write a question in our forum or engage with us on social media. We have hosted user meetups (both in person and virtually) to answer your questions, explain our thinking and demonstrate some of our ideas and best practices. Whatever ways suits your fancy, you will always be working with someone knowledgeable about our products who won’t make you navigate a frustrating phone menu or support system.
The other part about ‘Getting it Done’ that’s important is that we operate the company without unnecessary drama, “red tape” or bureaucracy. We don’t hold pointless meetings, if some people need to discuss, we just gather round a whiteboard or web meeting until everything is decided. All of our team works together to solve problems and no one cares who should get the credit. We succeed as a team or not at all.
Lots of companies talk about being family-friendly or providing work-life balance. Many of our employees used to work at other software companies where lip service was paid to such things. At Inflectra we decided to run the company in a different way.
Firstly, we provide all employees (whether part time or full time) with good benefits including health insurance, retirement plans and generous vacation days. But flexibility is also more than just what’s written in the benefits handbook, it’s also the ethos of the company. We don’t track vacation days, so if someone needs a couple extra, no one cares. We have employees working different schedules, and if someone is running late due to family issues, or needs to work from home to take care of personal business, no stress, no problem!
Finally, we make long term commitments to our employees, we have many people who’ve worked with us continually since our founding, and we have an almost zero attrition rate. We only hire people when we’re confident we provide them with a long-term opportunity, we don’t like rotating staff and we are not fans of the ‘random people’ approach to staffing!
We are committed to expanding the opportunities and frankly fun that can be had with a career in the software industry. Several of our employees are not career developers, testers or even marketers. Some of our best employees used to have other careers: social justice, hardware testing, public policy, real estate and being a stay at home parent.
We are always looking for ways to give opportunities to people, whether its hiring people who have the skills but not the necessary experience, working with local coding academies and bootcamps to provide internship opportunities, or supporting freelancers to write technical articles, blogs and whitepapers.
Inflectra is committed to community building and based in the Silver Spring area of the Washington, DC metropolitan area, we sponsor local tech meetups and events to help nurture local tech talent.