I have been working at Beezwax Datatools full-time
Can work from home
Self-manage projects (could be a con if this isn't good for you)
Open door policy - you can say just about anything and people are willing to hear you out.
Not for people who need guidance every day
Commute to Cupertino for client meetings
Advice to Management
Don't re-invent the wheel. If there are already some technical solutions that meet the company's needs then buy a license to them instead of building your own from the ground up.
I miss looking forward to collaborating with my coworkers. Every person I worked with at Beezwax – with the exception of one person who was fired – exhibited a sincere desire to hone their craft, listen openly to others' ideas, and even credit others voluntarily for their contributions. They talk about feeling like a family, and it really does begin to feel that way. They've even been known to show up on the weekend to help each other move homes.
Another benefit is that the work arrangements are extremely flexible. They work well in a distributed environment and make it a goal to create a win-win relationship with each employee.
They also gave me a lot of flexibility and support in terms of pursuing the projects and technologies that interested me.
The interview process when I was there could seem a little prolonged and disorganized. Many people will come through and introduce themselves. The upside to the whole process, however, is that they usually end up with very good trust and cultural fit with the people they hire.
Another challenge of working with Beezwax is that the compensation and benefits aren't as competitive as many other tech companies. Part of it is the nature of doing a lot of hourly billing. Another part of it is that they value relationships and customer satisfaction over numbers.
Advice to Management
I would have liked to see more systematic project management in the sense that we had an outline of the process and artifacts that we'd use. Something that can be replicated and refined over time and across teams. I know several good project managers have been hired in the past couple years, so things could be managed much differently now.
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