Motivating Remote Teams with HeyJobs

Daniela Kurrer
HeyJobs Org Blog
Published in
5 min readApr 14, 2020


Building a people-centric company culture is at the core of all people initiatives at HeyJobs. Today, 20 days after switching to fully remote for the first time in company history, our culture remains strong and engagement is still high.

These are our top 10 principles and initiatives that had the most impact on keeping our team engaged and productive.

#1 care personally

Principle: ‘Sweat the small stuff’ — show your team you care about each and everyone of them individually. It’s not about the money spent, but about showing people how much they matter.

What we did at HeyJobs:

During the first week after going 100% fully remote, our people team sent everyone a postcard from HeyJobs to show them how proud we are of their adaptability to the new situation.

#2 base all efforts on your values

Principle: Values are what we value — what we hire and promote for.

What we did at HeyJobs:

All people initiatives should be based on your company’s values and help make them more visible. At HeyJobs, we make sure that all our people initiatives are based on one or more of our company values: Teamwork, Entrepreneurship and Drive.

#3 give everyone plenty of platforms to connect

Principle: Give people plenty of opportunities to connect with each other in a non-work context and connect over their shared interests. Create support networks, using a variety of communication channels (such as slack, hangouts, zoom, mentimeter).

What we did at HeyJobs:

To create connections across teams we introduced shared interest channels via slack. We also established constant hangout rooms and specific channels for any news related to COVID -> #flattenthecurve

#4 embrace social responsibility as a company

Principle: People care about work, but they also care about their families, friends and social communities.

As a company, being aware of your social responsibility is important and shows people you care about their networks and communities as much as they do.

What we did at HeyJobs:

Most of our office suppliers were immediately and substantially hit by the quarantine imposed due to the COVID-19 outbreak. To support our partners, we asked one of our suppliers to divide our weekly fruit delivery and send it to all employees individually.

#5 encourage and celebrate personal effort

Principle: Encourage + celebrate individual initiatives and support with people team resources and budget as available.

What we did at HeyJobs:

Moving fully remote we supported individual initiatives under the theme #nofloorsonecompany and keep encouraging employees’ drive to keep morale and culture strong.

With everyone at home, a lot of people had great ideas how they can contribute (weekly yoga, remote German language course, slack challenges and team events).

#6 communicate often and transparently

Principle: Communicate regularly and update on:

  • current affairs (eg. COVID update)
  • financial health of the company
  • important company topics
  • new people initiatives
  • special achievements in the teams

What we did at HeyJobs:

Instead of in-person weekly all-hands on Monday mornings, we established our remote all-hands via Zoom and kept our weekly routines including singing ‘Happy Birthday’ at the end with everyone.

#7 keep your usual team initiatives alive

Principle: Keep your usual people initiatives alive and find a way to move them to a remote set up.

What we did at HeyJobs:

Even during remote times we keep our established people initiatives alive and adapt and support them accordingly: Remote Mystery Lunches with Hangouts and 10€ Lieferando vouchers for all instead of in-office team lunch.

#8 add weekly remote challenges and activities

Principle: Introduce weekly remote challenges and activities to keep people engaged and feeling as #onecompany during home office.

What we did at HeyJobs:

Every week we introduce one new weekly challenge or activity that can be done from home and invite them to spend time with each other and the people team.

#9 involve management team

Principle: Pro-actively involve (senior) management team in communication and initiatives.

What we did at HeyJobs:

Visible support from the management team for ongoing people initiatives is crucial to create a true people-centric culture and cement the importance of people topics and initiatives within the company.

Within the first week of fully remote work we started with regular ‘Good Morning Messages’ from the senior management team sharing their own personal experiences, tips and giving regular updates on their respective areas.

#10 know the pulse of the company

Principle: Every company and team is different.

Make sure to ask for feedback often (eg. pulse surveys, mentimeter polls during all-hands) to know which initiatives are working well for your team and which ones aren’t. Adapt your efforts accordingly.

What we did at HeyJobs:

After the first three weeks of home office we sent a simple pulse survey via google form to get a first feedback of how people are feeling and where they need more support.

Summary of our 10 principles

#1 CARE personally

#2 BASE all efforts on your values

#3 CREATE platforms to connect

#4 EMBRACE social responsibility as a company

#5 CELEBRATE personal effort

#6 COMMUNICATE often and transparently

#7 KEEP your usual team initiatives alive

#8 ADD weekly remote challenges and activities

#9 INVOLVE management team

#10 KNOW the pulse of the company



Daniela Kurrer
HeyJobs Org Blog

Vice President People @HeyJobsofficial