What Really Counts

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Almost a year after our first hiring campaign, it was time to launch a new one tailored specifically to the needs of our Customer Care teams. What prompted the direction of the new campaign was largely the current IT services landscape in Bulgaria and our stand against the commoditization of workforce in local outsourcing centers. But here’s the whole story.

A Little Background

Back when we started in the web hosting business 12 years ago, we were not only one of the very few IT companies in Bulgaria, but also a rare example of one locally founded and managed, not a third-party business outsource. Although this is still as true for us as it was back then, the human resources in demand at the time were mainly programmers. Today, thanks to the abundant technical talent, our geographical proximity to major European cities and comparatively cheaper prices, Bulgaria is turning into а major call center outsource destination. Despite the overall positive effect that it has on the economy, one of the shortcomings of this tendency is the negative effect that it has on company culture and work habits. Working in IT service centers in Bulgaria has become synonymous with working in a cubicle, often seemingly for big international companies, when in fact on a temporary part-time project for an outsourcing center. Employees grow accustomed to being motivated by targets, bonuses and numbers, which takes away from the quality of their work and commitment.

This is how we do IT - The SiteGround Manifesto

At SiteGround, we don’t believe in the things that are becoming the epitome of working in Customer Service - clocking your work time, having fixed breaks, quiet “phone off” hours, no personal space, etc. We believe that in order to be meaningful, your workplace or process needs to be healthy, comfortable, enjoyable and productive - suited to the people, not the other way round. We are motivated by way more than numbers and targets and when we say we put people first, we mean it - both in terms of our team members and clients.

Each organization has unwritten rules about how things are usually done that reflect its intangible values. These are often even more important than what is written in your job description. In order to communicate those as a huge motivation to our team and those who were about to join it, we decided to base our latest hiring campaign in Bulgaria around the work principles that really matter to us and turn it into some kind of a SiteGround work manifesto.

All designs from the campaign are photos from team-buildings, marathons and initiatives that we took together as a team and at the time were not meant to be shared outside of the company. These, however, are not only snippets of our lives in and outside the office. This is who we are as people, what we believe in as a team and how we approach not only our work but everything we do.

By pinning those down we not only aimed to show to people outside of the team what we are about and what we stand for, but also as a reminder to our ever growing team that the values we started off with 12 years ago are still as strong as ever - only way more richer now since there is more of us. Because it is your commitment, principles and efforts that count, not just the numbers.

Product Marketing Manager

A wearer of all possible hats, a project manager by title, a creative enthusiast at heart. Loves all-things Internet, checks Twitter first thing in the morning as an early dose of inspiration then tries to put it all into work throughout the day.

16 Comments

  1. Reply October 21, 2016 / 06:19 kennySiteGround Team

    Well Dima, I couldn't agree more.
    In the end it is the job satisfaction that comes from working together well in a team that is the motivation.
    Obviously only if one is not underpaying.
    As a receipient of the siteground service... I can truly say all my interactions (except one) have been with customer support staff that actually care and try to fix the situation. You can pay to do, but you cannot pay to think and care.
    So well done to siteground. Now as you expand it is a question of keeping that spirit. Never let one negative person destroy those around them- well that's my experience anyway.

  2. Reply October 21, 2016 / 07:51 PatrickSiteGround Team

    I want to second Kenny's comment - it's right on target. My experience with Siteground has been rewarding, both because the service is fast, reliable and has the right features, and also because of the caring support staff. Keep up the great work and maintain the customer-oriented company culture you have achieved. Don't let increasing size dilute the culture over time. Thanks!

    • Reply October 24, 2016 / 05:55 Dima PetevaSiteGround Team

      Thanks, Patrick! Cultivating and preserving our culture and team spirit over time and company growth is a top priority and we are definitely not underestimating the challenge. Thank for all your support and the kind words - we couldn't have done it without you along the way!

  3. Reply October 21, 2016 / 13:22 John BurgreenSiteGround Team

    I didn't have any idea where your company was working from until I read what you just posted. I think that is something important that you should be proud of -- never once was there a circumstance where culture spoke louder than service, and that is a very rare thing.

    John Burgreen
    Boulder Bridges
    4747 Table Mesa Dr
    Boulder, CO 80305
    http://bit.do/jrb

  4. Reply October 24, 2016 / 21:01 MarianaSiteGround Team

    Dima, I absolutely agree with John Burgreen. The reason I chose to work with Siteground was the fact this is Bulgarian company. Be proud.

  5. Reply November 10, 2016 / 16:15 Russ AltendorffSiteGround Team

    Dear Siteground

    I have been a client of yours for many years. I was an IT Director of two major global companies and a speaker at many events on "Intelligent Outsourcing" and "Customer Service".

    I too had no idea of your Bulgarian connection. I am amazed.

    I first became a client of yours as a way of privately keeping pace with my own staff, and with my own industry. You can become very isolated and out of touch as an IT Director! I remember using your web management interfaces and server management interfaces as an exemplar of best practice with my own staff in years gone by.

    in the early days of your development I had a few occasions when I personally needed support. Sometimes this did not go smoothly - but - over the years you have improved and improved.

    I have been retired now for almost 8 years. But reading your bulletin on your views on Customer Service and Staff Management in IT warmed my heart, and made me smile.

    Well done to you and your Board of Directors.

    I wish you every success.

    Regards
    Russ
    (SV Enterprise - cruising the Caribbean)

    • Reply November 15, 2016 / 03:07 Dima PetevaSiteGround Team

      Dear Russ, Your story just made my day - thanks so much for sharing it! I have been part of the SiteGround team for almost 11 years now. It's those little moments when I get to meet a client at an event or even virtually and they tell me something like this that I'm reminded of how long we've come. You have my warmest regards and best wishes! Safe travels around the Caribbean!

  6. Reply November 10, 2016 / 21:18 Brent NorrisSiteGround Team

    Right on Dima. I've noticed an improvement, a turn sometime around 8-12 months ago. It really is a pleasure working with sg support these days. It's work I have to do for clients so I appreciate it always being a good experience.

    • Reply November 14, 2016 / 02:01 Dima PetevaSiteGround Team

      Thanks, Brent! It's nice to hear our effort shows. We do our best to keep raising the bar higher.

  7. Reply November 14, 2016 / 02:41 MinaSiteGround Team

    It all sounds good. I hope your recruitment drive can help to tackle your diversity problem. Judging by your /people page it seems, like most tech companies, that women are under-represented on your team, and the positions they occupy seem to be sales, marketing, HR, etc.

    • Reply November 15, 2016 / 02:40 Dima PetevaSiteGround Team

      Mina, that’s an excellent point about tech companies and it’s really good that you’re raising it. Diversity is a topic that we pay very close attention to and always make a point of in our recruiting campaigns. One of the main goals of our earlier campaign this year was exactly to try to tackle the stereotypes about the people working in tech by showing our many faces. To address your comment about the women on our team directly, currently, 40% of the whole SiteGround team identify as female. Apart from Marketing and HR, where we also have a lot of male colleagues, our Chief Operations Officer is a woman. So is the Manager of our largest team ever who deal with a much larger scope of technical assistance than the industry average customer support or sales departments. We are proud of our efforts in this direction, but like I said - we always aim at raising the bar higher, so by no means does this mean that we think there is a point at which we stop thinking about diversity. It’s an ongoing process that we have been nurturing ever since the beginning of SiteGround and will continue to do so.

  8. Reply November 16, 2016 / 22:22 John EdwardsSiteGround Team

    I have good experience with Site Ground customers support staffs. If I have any doubt first I refer SiteGround tutorials after that I will contact any person online. Thank you again for your support.

  9. Reply December 29, 2016 / 00:54 Patrick ValmontSiteGround Team

    So far, I haven't had any issues with Siteground. I only have 2 years with them. Support is timely and the support team actually knows what's happening and how to fix it. I migrated from my old host and they transferred all my files, domains and relevant stuff over without any issues. I also like the staging environment, which I see some other so called "bigger" host do not have.

    The only slight issue I've noticed (but nothing that I worry about), is that sometimes my sites takes a while to load. If I have a site that loads in 5, it might take longer. It's like a minimal downtime, say around 10-15 secs. Maybe a hiccup somewhere. After that everything goes backto normal. As for major downtime, no, that has not happened at all.

    I highly recommend SG. Due to support, web services and migration services (and more).

    • Reply December 29, 2016 / 03:27 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      Hey Patrick, thanks for the feedback and the kind words. I am a bit surprised though that you're experiencing slow loading times because performance is our top priority and we have one of the fastest services in the indrustry. Do you mind mailing me at hristo.p [at] siteground.com with more details about your sites? I would love to check them out and see why aren't they loading as fast as you expect?

  10. Reply January 16, 2017 / 09:25 Richard HuckSiteGround Team

    I moved to Siteground about 6 months and am very happy with my Magento hosting. Over the weekend we moved our email hosting to Siteground. It is great to have everything in one place but the 2 GB limit on box size is going to be a problem for us. 10GB would be a good size. Any thoughts about increasing the box size?

    • Reply January 17, 2017 / 04:24 Hristo PandjarovSiteGround Team

      At this point we do not plan to increase the allowed size of the mailbox. I would recommend that you check G Suite by Google (https://gsuite.google.com), it's a very robust solution and I think they even have an unlimited mailbox size plan.

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