Working at Velir: An Inside Look at Work Culture and Team Dynamics
It’s often easy to get a grasp on the type of work a company does – what their offerings are, what types of clients they work with, etc. However, there’s a lot more nuance to intangibles like work culture and team dynamics. So this week, we’re pulling back the curtain to give you an inside look at what it’s like to work at Velir.
We believe that our people are the backbone of our company and we’re proud to have some of the most talented and passionate developers, designers, strategists, analysts, and leaders on board. We’re also fortunate to work with incredible clients who are making the world a better place every day. Below, we’ll take a look at what makes Velir a compelling place to grow your career and make a difference, through the lens of various members of our team.
Working at Velir – Why Did You Join Velir and What Keeps You Here?
A Sense of Community: Garrett Grant, VP, Client Services
When I interviewed at Velir, I immediately felt a sense of community in the office. I perceived deep respect between departments and saw that everyone appreciated each other’s expertise. I was drawn to working alongside a team of humble, intelligent and talented people.
Since joining Velir, I’ve gotten a better understanding of how we apply our digital expertise to achieve the best solutions for our clients. It sounds like common sense, but it's a sign of true proficiency to consider an organization’s unique business challenges and recommend an appropriate course of action – as opposed to funneling every client through the same "expert" process. The collaboration and ability for teams to partner with each other results in truly impressive solutions and creates an enjoyable work environment.
I also admire the types of clients that Velir chooses to work with. I’m excited to be a part of an agency that has such a great reputation with global foundations, non-profits, and associations that make a significant difference in the world.
Opportunities for Personal & Professional Growth: Stephanie Allen, Senior Digital Strategist
In the many years I’ve worked at Velir, I’ve grown in ways I could never have imagined both professionally and personally.
Velir has supported learning and growth opportunities inside and outside the office. I’ve attended larger industry conferences like the Sitecore Symposium, IA Summit, and the Evergage Personalization Summit, as well as local events, meetups, and courses. These include World IA Day in Boston, UXPA, Sitecore User Group New England, Boston Digital Analytics Meetup, She+ Geeks Out, and a General Assembly Digital Marketing course all with the aim of staying ahead in this ever-evolving industry.
In my day-to-day at the office, I’ve been encouraged to ask questions, push against the status quo, and find better ways to deliver the best possible outputs for our clients. The projects that excite me the most are those where cross-functional teams are given the opportunity to collaborate on the vision early on. These kinds of projects foster a productive working team and optimal outcomes all around.
Collaborative Development Culture: Diane O’Connell, Technical Director
I started at Velir as a Web Developer ten years ago, and have since been promoted to Senior Lead Developer, Development Manager, and Technical Director. Over the years I have had many professional development opportunities including training in Agile Development Practices, Unit Testing, and Situational Leadership, as well as the opportunity to attend various industry conferences and events.
Aside from growth opportunities, one of the primary reasons I’ve stayed at Velir all these years is because of the people who work here. Velir is full of talented, respectful people who truly want to do their best individually and as a group, and this is reflected in how well we work together. Code review meetings and feedback from my teams when we’re discussing a development approach or strategy have been integral to my growth as a technical professional.
I was recently interviewing a developer and it came to the part of the interview where we opened it up to any final questions he had for us. He asked us to elaborate on the development culture at Velir and the first thing that came to my mind was "collaborative."
Our team of 40+ developers shares their learning experiences and expertise daily. We have a Slack channel where members post questions on a particular development approach or errors they are running into, and other developers jump in to help. We have collaboratively built code libraries for common reuse scenarios and our entire development team meets regularly to discuss the latest updates on projects, as well as happenings within the industry and future opportunities to look out for.
A number of our developers also contribute their thought leadership through blog posts and other content or by presenting on a given tech topic – either internally or at user groups, conferences, etc. So even though there might only be 2-5 developers working on a project at a time, they are supported by many more. We work incredibly well together and we bring this dynamic to bear when we collaborate with client teams as well.
Working at Velir – Impact and Evolution
In addition to the individual perspectives we’ve provided above, we’ve also seen a few recurring themes come up across the company when we’ve asked for feedback on what differentiates Velir’s work culture from other agencies in our space. Chief among them are the types of organizations we choose to work with and our focus on continuing to evolve with the industry as it moves forward.
Making a Difference
In a world where an increasing number of employees are passionate about making a difference in the world through their work, Velir has been committed to being a community partner as well as a good global citizen for the last 19 years. Many of our staff mention that this is one of the top reasons they joined Velir.
We have partnered with some of the most influential and impactful grantmaking foundations and non-profits in the world including one of the world’s largest foundations based in the Pacific Northwest, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, IMF (International Monetary Fund), Kauffman Foundation, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health, the Commonwealth Fund, and others to amplify their mission and message utilizing the power of digital technology.
Growing & Evolving Our Agency to Lead Digital Transformations
At our core, we have always had a very strong technical presence, specializing in 3 enterprise web content management solutions – Sitecore, Drupal, and Adobe AEM. Over the years, however, as the nature of the industry and our client needs have evolved, we have adapted to become a fully-integrated digital agency.
We now offer a full suite of services from experience strategy where we explore current business and digital challenges and define the goals, audiences, and desired outcomes for a given project, moving into experience design where we define the user experience and create the visual and technical design for the solution, all the way to implementation where we build out the architected solution and integrate 3rd party technologies.
We’ve also evolved in terms of the types of clients that we work with. While we continue to strengthen our position within our original verticals – nonprofits, foundations, and associations, our portfolio today also includes leading healthcare systems and hospital networks and some of the top colleges, universities, and higher education institutions in the world.
We continue to invest in staying at the forefront of the latest technological advances in our space, honing our expertise and attending conferences and workshops in different functional areas from UX to design to AI and machine learning. We believe in the power of education, collaboration, and partnerships with cutting-edge technology platforms. But we also value people, the humans who use the digital experiences we create, and the diverse individuals at Velir who create them.
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
At Velir our brand “Human Digital” represents the intersection of technology and humanity in everything we do. Our goal to keep humans and their needs at the forefront of our work is fueled by our desire to seek a deeper understanding of each other. And our efforts to understand each other better start with our talent, and our approach to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) as a company.
This approach includes attracting and retaining a diverse workforce that reflects our community, but it also prioritizes internal training focused on interpersonal skills. By training our staff on how to engage with each other and the importance of understanding our differences through listening and curiosity, we can create a safe space for everyone to work together effectively. And when everyone feels comfortable being themselves at work, we all benefit from the increased collaboration and creativity it fosters.
If you like what you’ve read so far about what it's like to work at Velir, we encourage you to take a look at our latest openings or send us a note to get more information.