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Promoting Sustainable Pace: Insights from the Award-Winning Homefront Survey

Published in People

Written by

Janne Järvinen
People Partner

Janne Järvinen works as a People Partner at Nitor. The role includes everything from recruiting to onboarding and from employee experience measurements to tuning the work culture and practices at Nitor.


June 21, 2023 · 4 min read time

How do we ensure work-life balance that stands the test of time, fostering sustainable pace in our professional lives? We believe the answer lies not just with our employees, but with their personal networks as well. That's why we created our Homefront Survey that gathers insights from our employees' close ones. Two years since our last report, it's time to share fresh perspectives from our award-winning initiative.

A key concept to our culture is something we call 'Sustainable Pace', a principle stemming from the Agile Manifesto that stresses work-life balance and working pace that truly endures in the long-term. When we say long-term, we mean as far as until retirement – a perspective echoed in one of our founding theses.

This mindset led us to create the Homefront Survey in 2015. This isn’t your usual employee survey. Instead, it reaches out to our employees’ close ones – partners, children, parents, grandparents, siblings, and friends. The idea is to evaluate our employees’ wellbeing and Nitor as an employer through the lens of those who share the everyday lives of our employees.

This year, the Homefront Survey was recognised with the Magnet Employer Branding Award for the Most Engaging Employee Advocacy initiative. This award honors the inventive practices that nurture  positive workplace culture. It's thrilling to be recognised for our efforts in expanding our understanding of employee well-being beyond just the work environment.

2023 Survey Insights

For our 2023 Survey, we received a whopping 102 responses! In the survey, we ask about Nitor’s flexibility as an employer, work-life balance and spare time of Nitorean, support for remote work, and the general opinion and feeling about Nitor as an employer and how we care and appreciate our employees.

The feedback provided insights into our employees' wellbeing and experience, with scores ranging between 8.0 – 9.3 out of 10. The scores are slightly higher than those in the last survey. The feedback reinforces some of the aspects we take pride in, such as our inclusive family events and a caring company culture. We have also received praise on how we value and listen to our employees.

Here are some of the uplifting comments we received:

"I have seen my friend really blossom since they started working for you.”

“For me, Nitor appears as an employer who listens to its employees and gives them opportunities to influence. These things strongly create the impression that Nitor genuinely values its employees.”

"I wish I had a job at Nitor too!”

The positive feedback we received is both heartwarming and confirming. The majority of the feedback underscores the view of Nitor as a supportive workplace. Importantly, it also indicates that our employees' close ones not only understand, but actively support and advocate for the values that we at Nitor hold dear.

Feedback for the Future

While the Homefront Survey provides us ample opportunity to celebrate our successes, it is equally crucial in highlighting areas for our improvement. The positive feedback reinforces the success of our existing culture, but we are just as interested in those areas where we could do better.

Some of the homefront expressed concerns about work hours stretching into late evenings, especially in the context of remote work.

"Working days are often extremely long. Especially when working remotely, work is often done until late in the evening. I do not know whether an employee reports all of his working hours.”

Others voiced thoughts about the environmental sustainability of our activities, like the carbon footprint of our international trips. There were also comments on the topic of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion & Belonging (DEIB), signaling that the topic is important to our homefront as well.

"I am sure that many employees enjoy the different trips Nitor offers. However, I think Nitor should consider the climate impact of flying to different destinations. This is not a very sustainable way to promote staff wellbeing, as it causes large emissions.”

"Make sure that you have enough diversity and that everyone feels equally well.”

We are deeply grateful for the high level of engagement from the homefront. It's not just the care for our employees that shines through, but also a profound understanding of current trends and practices in work culture. These comments offer valuable insights into the areas where we need to focus our efforts next.

Turning Feedback into Action

The Homefront Survey gives us crucial insights that help us make effective changes. Here is how we are responding to the improvement areas identified.

Eco-Friendly Adventures: In response to concerns about the environmental impact of our international trips, we are actively seeking more eco-friendly alternatives. These include options such as domestic trips or "staycations," which can provide the same team-building and collaboration opportunities as our trips abroad.

Promoting Sustainable Pace: We are going to strengthen our communication around our commitment to a Sustainable Pace. This includes discussing what a 7.5-hour working day truly means for our employees and providing examples of workdays to illustrate how others manage their time.

DEIB actions: Our DEIB team promotes belonging with several initiatives. We have also teamed up with Inklusiiv, a DEIB consultancy, to help all Nitoreans understand and challenge our unconscious biases. By recognising these biases and actively working to reduce their influence, we are striving to build a more inclusive workplace where diversity can truly thrive. 

Moving forward together

Engaging the homefront has given us once again a unique perspective on our employee experience, workplace culture, and practices. By including the voices of the homefront in our conversation, we ensure our decisions consider the broader picture, beyond just our office. These insights, both reinforcing and redirective, help us create a better workplace. We want to extend our thanks to everyone who contributed their feedback, helping us shape Nitor into a more sustainable and inclusive workplace.

Written by

Janne Järvinen
People Partner

Janne Järvinen works as a People Partner at Nitor. The role includes everything from recruiting to onboarding and from employee experience measurements to tuning the work culture and practices at Nitor.