With North America becoming our fastest-growing market, the ability for the Client Services team to expand our support hours and onboard new clients onto our rebate management platform was a top priority for us. That’s why we have opened a new office in San Francisco for our Client Services team to better serve our American clients, with secondment opportunities offered to all of our employees based at our headquarters in Stratford-upon-Avon. International secondments can be a huge benefit to employees as they offer them an opportunity to develop their skill sets whilst also giving them new experience within a different environment.
By expanding our support hours, our clients no longer have to wait until the following day to get a response or get an update on a current support ticket from the Client Services team. This leaves our clients in North America safe in the knowledge that their support requests are being dealt with efficiently and promptly.
This month we have spoken to one of our first two San Francisco secondees James, an Engineering Manager who graduated from the University of Birmingham with a BSc in Computer Science. He joined Enable as a Software Engineer, then progressed to his present role as an Engineering Manager. A key part of James’s role in San Francisco was to work in close collaboration with his UK colleagues in the Client Services team and provide direct assistance to our clients via our support hub, email and inbound calls. The US team is also on hand to help with the onboarding of new clients based in North America through online workshops, screen sharing and site visits. After spending 3 weeks in January at our new offices in San Francisco, James shares his experience with us.
How long have you worked at Enable?
I’ve worked at Enable for almost 8 years now, I started as a Software Engineer and have recently been promoted to Engineering Manager. It still surprises me how much has changed since I first started with Enable, I would never have expected a secondment to San Francisco being a possibility when I first started!
Why did you decide to apply for the secondment opportunity?
It was a no-brainer really. San Francisco has always been somewhere I wanted to visit so to get the opportunity to go there for work was perfect.
Additionally, as an Engineer, a lot of my time is spent on technical work so the option to see how a different part of the team worked also interested me.
What was the internal application process like?
Enable wanted to open the secondment opportunity to all parts of the company, regardless of whether they were in the Client Services team. A workshop was held to explain what would be expected of the secondment and I quickly put in my application following that.
Before the secondment started, I joined the Client Services team full-time for three weeks of training, temporarily stopping all my current work within the Engineering team. Due to the time difference in San Francisco it wouldn’t always be possible to contact UK team members for assistance, these three weeks were invaluable in preparing me for the secondment.
How long did you stay in San Francisco for?
We were in San Francisco for three weeks in January. Chris McCarthy, an Implementation Lead from the Client Services team, also went with me.
Enable rented two apartments in the Duboce Triangle area for us to stay at for the duration of the secondment, these were a stone’s throw from some great bars and restaurants and were just a short 15-min commute from the office.
Tell us about your average day at our offices in San Francisco.
Our mornings were usually busiest, as due to the 8-hour time difference with the UK we had limited time to catch-up with the team in Stratford-upon-Avon.
A lot of our time was spent interacting with our non-UK customers, providing them support throughout their entire working day, especially when the UK team had finished. I personally found it interesting interacting with customers who were using the software that I had helped to implement.
What did you enjoy most about working in San Francisco?
It was great to experience working in a place that was so different to Stratford-upon-Avon. The office was on the 16th floor of a skyscraper, getting the lift up to the office each day to see the views of San Francisco was really impressive!
Did you get the chance to do any sightseeing in your free time?
We tried to make the most of our evenings and weekends to explore the city and surrounding areas. A few of the highlights were: visiting Alcatraz, cycling across Golden Gate Bridge, seeing the Golden State Warriors play basketball and doing a day trip down to Silicon Valley.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to apply for a secondment opportunity at Enable?
Go for it! It was an amazing experience, and San Francisco is such a great place to visit.
What Enable can offer you
One of Enable’s top priorities is to provide a positive environment for all of our employees to work in — this is reflected in our excellent Glassdoor employee reviews! Not only do our employees have the freedom to work creatively and to suggest improvements and new ways of working, our team structure and project processes allow them to focus entirely on solving any given challenge. Investing in our employees lets us devote more time into increasing their abilities, as well as drawing from a steady stream of high calibre applicants. The benefits are clear; Enable prides itself on high staff retention and expects to grow to over 100 employees by the end of 2020.