How you could make "fast friendships" in Goodlord's Referencing team
18 November 2021
Our Referencing team is remote-based and the People team works hard to make sure that everyone feels part of the Goodlord culture, through communicating well and recreating that office feeling - as two Referencing Goodlordians explain.
Goodlord operates on a hybrid basis and that means that some teams are completely remote-based, including Referencing. Here are two Referencing Executives, Art Hyrst and Carly Jo Bosson, to explain what their day-to-day looks like and how they find the remote-working experience.
What does a normal day look like for you?
Art Hyrst: I work in the Income team, so it's my job to assess applicants' payslips and employment contracts and contact their employers for a reference. We have a morning meeting to catch up as a team, then we'll each be assigned a queue to work in. After lunch (which I love being able to take whenever I want), we will check the queues again and move around if needed to make sure we hit our team targets. I also run quizzes in our morning meetings, so usually I spend ten minutes before I clock out coming up with something fun for us to do the next day!
Carly Jo Bosson: In my team, we use the first half an hour of each morning to take the time to respond to emails. We have a simple rota system to keep track of what channels you will be on throughout the day, whether emails, phones, or chats, and we'll have a couple of hours each on each. Some people will be on chats throughout the morning and then will swap to phones in the afternoon and vice versa. There will also be a 15-minute break in the morning and late afternoon. This is a great way to break up the day and also to give everyone a chance to take time away from their desk.
How would you describe communication at Goodlord and in your team?
AH: We use Slack's online messaging tool all day every day and it's great! Being able to have channels for your team, direct messages and group chats with colleagues, and channels with the wider business make me feel really connected. I also love that we have Google Hangouts for our teams throughout the day so we can pop in and out and have conversations while we work, which really replicates that office feeling. It also means that it's easy to get support very quickly if I need it.
CJB: We have team checks-ins every day from 9:00-9:15, which is a great time to give any feedback or flag anything with your manager. It's also a time and place to catch up with colleagues for anything unrelated to work. I also enjoy using Slack to keep in contact with colleagues and for updates throughout the day. We use it to play fun little games and quizzes on different channels throughout the day, to build strong team morale.
How do you find remote work at Goodlord?
AH: I definitely feel like part of a team. Being able to jump into Hangouts to chat with my team and colleagues, as well as being on Slack with them has let me make fast friendships already and I love the rapport we've all built up. I have the added benefit of being able to work in my sweats with my cat! I also love that there are lots of opportunities to go into the office if we want to. It definitely helps me feel like I'm not isolated working at home.
CJB: I enjoy working remotely. Although you are not physically around people, you definitely still feel like you are. We have constant communication with colleagues, seniors and other teams, there will always be someone there and available that you can reach out to. We still have daily morning meetings and an hour-long meeting every Thursday for updates, new referencing criteria, or for anything that needs to be flagged. We also use this time to get to know each other!
Tell us about the fun stuff - how does Goodlord keep you engaged?
AH: I've not been here that long (just over three months) and already I've been involved in three virtual socials and have one more coming up - more than my last job ever did in person! The socials are fun, interesting, and regular. They're a great part of Goodlord life and I really enjoy being able to get involved from home. There have also been goody bags and treats sent home for us, and that's always such a nice surprise!
CJB: With Goodlord's monthly social events, whether they're online or in-person, you'll never be left out, no matter where you live. For example, we have two Halloween social events, one online and one in-person, which is great for those who can't travel down. For some larger events, costs are sometimes covered, which is great for those who live further away.
The work/life balance is really good. It's best to get your holidays in when you can but senior team members will try their very best to accommodate everyone and will always offer alternatives if there are certain days not available.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to become a referencing executive?
AH: Go for it! It's interesting, there are a variety of roles and a lot of progression opportunities - I've had the chance to learn new parts of the job three times in three months! - and you'll get the freedom to work from home with the atmosphere of an office.
CJB: My best advice would be to join in anywhere you can! For example, join one of the committees, make a group Hangout with your new colleagues to get to know each other, and ask to be added to most of the Slack channels. These are great ways not to miss out on any news, events or updates within your team and a great way to get to know everyone.
Oh Goodlord Limited is an Appointed Representative of Goodlord Protect Limited for general insurance products and credit broking. Goodlord Protect Limited is directly authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority, registration number 836727. You can check this information on the Financial Services Register by visiting www.fca.org.uk/register or by telephoning 0800 111 6768 (Freephone) or 0300 500 8082 from the UK. The FCA is the independent watchdog that regulates financial services.