RWL185: The Best Thing About Working Remotely w/ Darcy Mayfield

FROM THE ARCHIVE: Ever wondered how a fully remote company not only survives but thrives in the digital age? Darcy Mayfield new Bowles  peeled and what’s it like to work remotely..

Wanderlust meets workspace in our enlightening conversation about the joys and pitfalls of remote work. 

Wrapping up, the spotlight shifts to you, the aspiring remote worker, as Darcy bestows nuggets of wisdom on navigating the hiring process . Heed her advice on aligning with the company’s mission and values, and stand out in a sea of applicants. As we reflect on the shifting work landscape, we encourage you to embrace this remote revolution. So, grab your notepad and tune in—it’s an episode brimming with insights that could usher you into the ranks of a future-forward company like Taxjar.

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Speaker 1:
0:00

Well, hello everybody, wherever you may be in the world. Once again I've got a great guest today. I'm with Darcy Bowles from Taxjar. Taxjar is a 100% remote business and I know you guys are all interested to learn about how you can get into working within a remote business, and Taxjar was one of the best businesses I could think of to speak to. And Darcy, I wanted to speak to Darcy. She's heads up the employment there, so what better person to speak to than somebody who deals with employment within a remote company? Darcy, thank you so much for joining us today.

Speaker 2:
0:41

Sure, absolutely Happy to be here.

Speaker 1:
0:44

Darcy, tell us. I mean, I know that Taxjar there's a bit of a clue in the name in terms of what the company deals with, but could you just begin by telling us in a bit more depth about Taxjar please?

Speaker 2:
1:00

Sure, absolutely so. Our main mission is to make e-commerce easier for everyone. Here in the United States, we have multiple different sales tax regulations, from state to county to the federal level. It is different everywhere. So we basically serve as a solution for e-commerce sellers that plugs into WooCommerce, magento, to basically autofile and make filing your sales tax as an e-commerce seller busier excuse me easier, so you can focus on your business. So that's what we do in a nutshell. We have multiple teams, from marketing to development to customer service, and we are located all across the United States. We even have a girl who lives on a boat, which is pretty cool. Yeah, so we basically work all together to solely make commerce easier for our e-commerce sellers.

Speaker 1:
1:59

Sounds great and, from what I could see, you joined Taxjar quite recently. How's it all going for you?

Speaker 2:
2:08

It's good. So you mentioned I'm like head of employment. I kind of just want to correct on that I actually had a employee experience. So my role is really kind of the lifecycle of bringing somebody on board, making sure they feel welcome, keeping the culture together, working on our team off-sites, just making sure that everyone feels like they know where things are, and really one of my biggest missions is making sure teams, cross-functionally, are communicating with each other and understanding each other. On a personal level, because our business is based on trust If you're a remote company, how are you going to trust your coworkers if you don't know them? So that's really the basis of my role and I'm sorry, can you repeat the last question?

Speaker 1:
2:54

No, I was just saying how you recently joined Taxjar.

Speaker 2:
2:58

Yeah, oh yeah.

Speaker 1:
2:59

And how is it all going? Because it's fairly new to you as well, right?

Speaker 2:
3:03

Sure, absolutely. It's fascinating. I love it. The sales tax space is complicated and amazing and wonderful and we're solving a really, really real problem for e-commerce sellers. I mean, the goal of running an online business is not to deal with your sales tax, it's to run your business Absolutely and love your product and sell your product. So it's really cool to be part of a company that really sees our customers as number one. And then, from a standpoint of how I've been here for, yes, I guess about nine months now, it's great. It's so cool to be part of a pretty rapidly growing startup and really help to build out our onboarding program and our culture programs. And I actually got to kind of have the moment that I think everyone waits for in working for a remote company. I helped plan our company offsite. We do two offsites a year where we bring everyone from the United States to one common location in the US, and I got to meet everyone and there were 25 people who had been hired since I was hired, including myself, who had never met anyone face to face. So it's going really well. That was probably the catalyst of just like this is real, this is happening, so that's something really cool that we do too. That, I think, is essential to a remote company.

Speaker 1:
4:26

Is that Jamfest?

Speaker 2:
4:28

Jarfest.

Speaker 1:
4:30

Jamfest Jarfest.

Speaker 2:
4:32

You used to be karaoke. You could call it Jamfest.

Speaker 1:
4:35

I'm sure you kind of tell us a bit about that, because from the companies I've spoken to so far I've spoken to a few companies that offer remote work, obviously, because that's who we're featuring in the summit. Tell us about how that goes. How does Jarfest go, and is that really key in terms of integrating people into the business and making people feel as though they belong to the business?

Speaker 2:
5:04

Yes, I would say 110% yes to that. I think investing in bringing all employees together at the same time to really get to know each other on a perp Not that people don't know each other on a personal level, but to be in physical contact and to see, read body language and you could just see things that are outside of chat or Zoom and really connect on a deeper level from an interest standpoint, and also to get things done from a work standpoint, I think is essential to a remote company. I think any remote company that's not bringing their employees together at least once a year, if not twice I think it's essential we do it twice a year is doing themselves a huge Jarfest.

Speaker 1:
5:49

And that seems to be a pattern as well. Well, there is a pattern in terms of other remote companies, whether they're 100% or not. Bringing the group together at least once a year I think twice a year seems to be the common theme, and I think that's like you said, it must be a crucial part of the engagement. I think that's one thing. I mean a lot of people that I've spoken to who are looking for remote work. They struggle with the actual what do you call it? The isolation in some ways. So I think things like Jarfest it's a wonderful idea and bringing people together and as well, darcy, have you had other remote roles as well? Is this your first remote role?

Speaker 2:
6:38

So this is technically my first fully remote role. That being said, I actually worked for Airbnb for about 3 and 1 1⁄2, 4 years. So I was working with teams that were in Japan and Australia and all over the world. So I kind of took that knowledge and that skill set of cross-communicating, cross-time zones. It really is in some way like working remotely. So I felt really confident coming into this role that I could adopt that fully remote lifestyle. And also, for me, being fully remote is a non-negotiable for me. For the rest of my life. I would never work any other way.

Speaker 1:
7:20

Wow, you're completely transformed from somebody who used to work in an office.

Speaker 2:
7:25

Yeah.

Speaker 1:
7:26

I suppose I mean you raise actually a good point there, darcy, because lots of, again, lots of the people I've spoken to, people like yourself who are either recruiting now or perhaps in the future, they all say that you need to have some sort of experience of working remotely, and I think you've sort of really revealed a really clever way of saying that you have the transferable skills essentially. Ie you've worked with remote teams before, so I think that's a massive part of working remotely, isn't it, being able to work across time zones.

Speaker 2:
7:59

Absolutely, I would say, not even just time zones. But I always, when I'm looking at resumes, I never want to negate somebody because they haven't had fully remote experience. I think some things that we really look for, that we've seen that have proven to be successful, is a huge entrepreneurial spirit. A lot of people on our team have actually owned their own businesses and sold their own businesses and being an entrepreneur, you have to go with the flow. You work weird hours, you're always on the go, like that's a huge sign. Another huge sign is comfort with cloud-based tools. Are you comfortable communicating across base camp Slack, trello, asana, whatever that may be? We use base camp. But that comfort level with chat communication, things like Skype, like we're on right now, or Zoom, which we use for all company team calls and all of our video meetings Comfort level with that is huge and that can really help, I think, with noticing somebody's skill set and knowing OK, well, maybe you haven't been fully remote before, but this really tells me that you're committed and that you can make this transition fairly easily.

Speaker 1:
9:06

Absolutely. Yeah, we're going to come on to a few in a little while about some of the tools, but you mentioned a couple of them already and it seems again like each remote company I think this is something to really think about each remote company has their set of tools that they prefer to use. So I think, even if you're not working remotely now and you're trying to get into it, it's a good idea to actually begin to familiarize yourself at least with those tools so you know what to do, and actually try to implement some of them into your day-to-day work so that you can actually say that you've not only familiar with them, but you've actually used them as well. So that's great, absolutely. One thing you said, darcy. You said you're complete, you're remote forever. Now, you're remote or nothing. Now, why is that for you? Why is it so attractive for you? And, yeah, what's the attraction for you?

Speaker 2:
10:02

Sure, absolutely. I think for me, on not even a professional level but a personal level, when I'm happy in my dreams are being fulfilled from like a personal level. Obviously I'm going to excel in my professional life and for me, one of my like personal core values is I love to travel. Like traveling is a non-negotiable for me, and so the freedom like I'm in Oregon right now house sitting for my best friend's dog while they're on their honeymoon and I'm visiting my family and I can bring my dog and I can live in Lake Tahoe in a community that we don't have much of a community. There's hardly anybody there. I live in the middle of the mountains. There's a bear in my front yard. All the time You've got to be able to do live kind of this life that I've always wanted to live, but also excel in a profession that I was born to do and that I love doing, is a match made in heaven for me and I see it. Everyone has a different reason for working remotely and I see it on our team all the time. I mean we've got people who love working really because they're never going to miss their kids baseball game or they are going to be able to stay with their grandpa when they're sick, or they're able just to pop on over to New York for Christmas to visit an auntie and that is so special. We're not restricting ourselves. Because I have to get in the car and be at an office, that ends up being a 12 hour day with a commute and it's wasteful time and I can work the hours that I need to work. I work a lot, but I also really enjoy the fact that my schedule is flexible.

Speaker 1:
11:42

And it sounds like you're a bit of a nomad as well, then you like your traveling. I do. Where have you traveled recently?

Speaker 2:
11:51

Sure, I just got back from Mexico. Perhaps, they're flooding. Yeah, I just got back from Mexico. Right now I'm in Oregon for the month. I'm not really sure what's next, but that's the beauty of it is. If you know, I drove up here on a Saturday, spent my weekend here and then just dove into work on Monday morning, and it makes really no difference. My quality of work is the same, if not better, because I'm happy.

Speaker 1:
12:17

And it's that you mentioned another great word their community. And I think that's a lot of things that remote workers they struggle with. That they really struggle. From the conversations I've had A lot of them I think I mentioned this year before we came on the call but there's a lots of feelings of isolation and just feeling as though there are people there but they just don't have this sort of network. How do you keep on a personal, how do you sort of keep your own networks going?

Speaker 2:
12:53

Sure. So I'll kind of answer that two-fold. I'll enter it first of how we keep it going within tax jar and then how I keep it going personally, I think isolation is and can be a reality of remote work. For sure, I definitely feel it sometimes when I am back home in Tahoe there aren't a lot of people around, and so how I really keep it within tax jar, and one of my roles is noticing that if I'm feeling this way, there are probably other people who are feeling this way, who live less remotely than I do in terms of their physical space. So we've created a lot of things within tax jar to really bond people and have kind of that internal community, even within base camp, and that's everything from creating social channels within our project management system, from kids at tax jar to pets at tax jar to a health wellness group. This month we've launched a health and wellness challenge where you need to get 7,000 steps in per day and you just share a photo of where you walked or where you ran or where you got exercise today and then at the end of the month we'll do a drawing for whoever did this every day, for $100 to Amazon. So it creates this community of I get to see where Kyle ran in Tennessee or I get to see where somebody kayaked and got their arm workout in, and so it's really really cool. It kind of opens up these lines of communication and creates this community of similar interests. So that's really something that we work really hard to do internally to negate any sort of isolation. And that spans even further from that to things like skill shares where somebody shares a skill, to celebrating birthdays and anniversaries. I mean, we really work hard to make sure that no one feels like they're ever alone.

Speaker 1:
14:50

Would it be fair to say, then, that you guys sound like you go above and beyond, and I think it may be that remote companies perhaps have to do a lot more than a bricks and mortar company because of that sort of endemic sort of feeling of isolation amongst people who were remotely? Is that, would that be fair?

Speaker 2:
15:09

Yeah, I'd say absolutely. I mean, you can't just grab somebody and say let's go to happy hour, right?

Speaker 1:
15:14

Yes.

Speaker 2:
15:15

Right. So we've got to find ways and we have found ways to kind of match what happy hour would mean. So, whether that's just a hop on a call in chat or we do something called Friday FaceTime, where our newer employees stick around and anyone who'd like to come on the call comes on and we just pop questions from anything about life and we just learn about that person, and so it's kind of like a happy hour chat, but without the booze and without the bar. But it's cool. We drink in a glass of wine, if you want, on your own. So that's what's really cool about it. And then, from a personal standpoint, creating community, I think it's really cool to find other remote workers in my area. That's definitely something that I've sought out to do, and also just working from coffee shops and making sure I get out of the house and being around other people. That also falls on me and falls on anybody else who works remotely. You have to kind of have if it's something you want. You kind of have to have that drive to get yourself out of your PHAs and out of your house because you don't have to. So I know that's something that I need in my life.

Speaker 1:
16:22

So I definitely make an effort to do that and other than the actual isolation, do you have any other either individual or challenges in tax jar that you overcome being a 100% remote company?

Speaker 2:
16:43

I don't know if it's necessarily a challenge, but I think something that really helps and just something always to remember being a 100% remote company is over communicate all the time Because we're all kind of on our own schedules. I mean, we all pretty much work the same hours, give or take three hours with the Eastern time zone. I would say documentation and communication. Like anyone coming into a project or a task that's been left open, should know exactly where to pick up. They shouldn't have to ask that person. They should know exactly where to pick up, and all that should have been documented. So I think, just always knowing that, even though I've said things like four or five times, that's not annoying to people and that's OK, and I just have to remember that is announcing something four or five times, I just want to make sure it gets out to everyone and everybody knows that what's going on or the changes that have been made, and just being comfortable with that, being comfortable with repeating yourself, being comfortable with over documenting and over communication because that's how we work together we're remote.

Speaker 1:
17:48

I was talking to Nick Francis from Help Scout the other day and he was again. A lot of the things that you're saying reflect what he said. I think one of the things he said that's key is the ability to be able to document he said the exact word, I think, or something similar being able to write quite concisely as well and quite effectively to communicate different aspects of a project or where you're up to, or just communicating a general day-to-day thing so somebody can really understand it quite quickly without having, I suppose, the face-to-face contact.

Speaker 2:
18:22

Yeah.

Speaker 1:
18:23

And that's something that sounds like you do that as well with Tax John, and it sounds like as well, it's something that has to be, would it be fair to say that would have to be part of? I suppose one of the traits of somebody who's remote work is that communication.

Speaker 2:
18:41

Yes, I would say, being a pro at communication is a non-negotiable for us. You have to be a good communicator to be able to work remotely. I think that that is non-negotiable for any remote worker.

Speaker 1:
18:57

And are there any other traits that you've noticed or that you ask for with Tax John? That, I suppose the softer skills. I suppose what I'm referring to here is the softer skills Sure that you want or need at Tax John.

Speaker 2:
19:11

Yeah, absolutely. I would say yeah. A curiosity Are you breaking it?

Speaker 1:
19:17

slightly there, Darcy. Oh hello, Can you hear me? I've got you back. Now You're back.

Speaker 2:
19:22

Okay cool, I would say a huge thing and a huge trait that I really look for in people, that we look for at tax jar in people and that we found to be successful, is curiosity. The curiosity to solve problems, the curiosity to learn about all the aspects of the business, even though it might not pertain to your role, the curiosity and drive just to work together and find solutions. Yeah, curiosity and problem solving, it's say, probably go pretty hand in hand. Interestingly enough, I found that and this isn't something I necessarily look for like you don't have to be funny to work a tax jar, but I found that humor has been really an interesting trait that's come out of some people. That's really helped to kind of break down some barriers in terms of the cultural standpoint of tax jar. When somebody pops in with a joke that everybody kind of gets, that is out of the woodwork, you just immediately feel like, oh, I can talk to this guy. So I'd say that's something that was surprising, that I've learned. But I take curiosity. Curiosity and the ability to problem solve is huge.

Speaker 1:
20:35

No, I can see why you need that sense of humor, because maybe I've experienced remote work myself and I think there's times when I suppose if you're not as connected, especially when you're not as connected within a big company as you guys are, you have to find ways of entertaining yourself in some ways. Yeah, you know you have to. I think as well, it would be fair to say if you're dealing with somebody who may be a client or who may be a colleague or an associate within the business that you're in, you've got to find some way of connecting with somebody quite quickly and quite immediately, and I suppose that sense of humor is a trigger for that, isn't it?

Speaker 2:
21:13

Yeah, I would definitely say so. Which is it was something that pleasantly surprised me and something I actually hadn't thought about. Coming to tax jar that I've really noticed kind of over the last nine months of what's really helped open people up and I'd say that's a huge catalyst in it.

Speaker 1:
21:29

I think there's a bit of misconception as well of remote workers is. I think there's a conception that we're just heads down and we just keep ourselves to ourselves and we don't talk to anybody all day. And I think you completely well, I know that's not true, but I think that confirms that that's a rumor, that's not true, so that's good Sure.

Speaker 2:
21:51

I'd actually say there's two sides to that. It's kind of a double headed dragon. There's that conception, and then there's also the conception that remote workers are just goofing off and not working at all. Yes, so far from the truth, because I would say our team and other remote teams probably work too much and so that is such an interesting, you know, dichotomy is those two camps of thought from people who have never worked remotely or not familiar with remote work because it's such, it's so different than either one of those right.

Speaker 1:
22:27

Completely agree. Yeah, again, this is, I suppose it leads to another trait, doesn't it really? Because you've got to have that. You mentioned trust at the top of the call, but you have to have that aspect of discipline, self-discipline, because there's not any. You know, when you're sitting next to your boss in a bricks and mortar business, you're kind of aware that you should be doing something, but when you're sitting on your own, you need to be sort of conscious that after this project or after this hour, I need to move on to something else, and you know it's now the end of the day, so I need to clock off now, and you know, and pick the kids up from school, or whatever it may be. So, yeah, working too much definitely is something that I find I still do quite a lot. So yeah.

Speaker 2:
23:10

Yeah absolutely so. I think that's a continuous challenge within all remote companies. I haven't really heard anything different. I think. I think there's no one solution at all. I think a big part of that is self-discipline, and giving yourself the permission to clock off and also really setting that example from a leadership level is huge. So that's something that I'm really impressed with our leadership team and our C staff is they really make a point our CEO really makes a point to take time off and encourage everyone else to take time off too.

Speaker 1:
23:51

So do you track people's time, or do you just leave people just to do their own tracking, or how do you work?

Speaker 2:
24:03

Do you mean in terms of taking time off or just kind of in general?

Speaker 1:
24:06

Just where that aspect of you know, because some companies work to the actual view that they want 40 hours per week, for example, or 36 hours per week. Is that how you work, or do you just leave people to do projects? You know, it's just a matter of them doing it, delivering it to that certain deadline.

Speaker 2:
24:29

Sure. So we have everyone at an average of 40 hours a week. We don't track the time. We hire adults for a reason and we hire people who are responsible and who can you know? Obviously some weeks are going to be a little more than 40 and some weeks are going to be a little less. That's just the nature of the business. We're a quarterly business because we file sales tax, so you know, four months out of the year are crazy, like absolutely crazy, and people are probably working a little bit more than 40 hours a week. That being said, in those down months, from my position, I definitely look on our calendar and make sure people are taking time off. I make sure people are taking days off, because without that rest, people are going to get burned out and that's the last thing that we want. So, to totally answer your question, no, we don't track time, but I hope and don't think we ever will need to based on the expectations that are set when we hire and also the people that we hire. Balance is huge and balance is something that we strongly, strongly encourage. We never want to see people working 60 hours a week all the time. That's not okay. But if somebody's working 10 hours a week, then it's probably a problem.

Speaker 1:
25:42

Of course, of course and we're going to talk about the hiring process in a little bit but I'm curious because I'm on lots of email lists and forums and I talked to a lot of people about remote work, getting into remote work and a lot of them, a lot of people are struggling to get remote work and I think my feeling is there's a, there's a, there's a sway of people who are perhaps not approaching getting a remote role in the right way. How, actually, how did you get, how did you get your your role with them with tax jar?

Speaker 2:
26:17

Well, I saw the posting. I was working in Lake Tahoe. I was working for a small marketing firm. In between my, when I left Airbnb and I was, I came on the tax jar and I was thinking about all the things that I really, really wanted in my next role and it totally had to do with employee experience. It had to do with company culture. It had to do with being able to build in a startup. I love problem solving, I love building things out of nothing. It's I strive in it. I love working as a team and I was on WeWork Promotely actually and this position popped up and I started reading it. It was like sales tax. I've never worked in sales tax before. I've never worked in any sort of. You know, I've always been in the hospitality industry. But then I started looking at the role and I was like, wow, this team is incredible. These are some of the smartest people I have read about. I want to be a part of this team and the role specifically because I wasn't interacting with the products so much. The role specifically was so exactly what I'd been looking for and it was even more than I even imagined. So that was kind of the first step was I saw and I was like this is me, this is my role and I can make a big difference here. So I started reaching out, I started using the skills that I had gained kind of in my past experience and ended up realizing it was a really good fit for me and the company thought so too. So that's kind of how I got in the door.

Speaker 1:
27:41

Did you apply via that job board or did you go direct or?

Speaker 2:
27:46

Yeah, absolutely so. I applied via the job board. I also reached out. I used all my researches. I was probably super annoying. I reached out to the CEO on LinkedIn. I reached out to the CEO via email. I tried all of his first and last names. I got a bunch of bounce backs. But I think when you know that you're the fit for something and you want it really bad and you know that you can make a difference, that shows, as long as you do it out of with a good heart and you do it with your gut feeling and you do it because you know this is a good fit for you and it's not always going to work out. I was so happy that it did. But I would just say again that, over communication, working remotely and I think that really kind of shined with me, but I also see it shine with other people who want to work remotely. I definitely you touched on something saying people don't really know where to start or maybe they're doing it the wrong way. I don't ever and I can say this collectively for Techstar as a team we don't ever want somebody to come to Techstar just because they want to work remotely. That's not the reason that we're a team. We're not a team because we all just want to travel or work remotely. We're a team because remote work is our passion, but we want to build stuff together. We're passionate about the product. We're passionate about our goals. We're passionate collectively. We want to work amongst smart people who make us better people, and that's the reason I work for Techstar and that's the reason I see successful hires come on, not just. I want to work from home, and I think that is a misconception that some people don't realize when they're applying to a remote position is it's so much more than just having that flexibility.

Speaker 1:
29:40

Yeah, and again you've touched on another great point, because I was actually coming to that in the sense that the way in which you and I specifically asked you why or how you went about applying, because I got the feeling that you didn't just apply through the job board and leave it to that. I had that feeling and I think while you're watching this and listening to Darcy, you have to appreciate that it's not a spray and pray sort of approach to actual job, you know, to getting a job, especially in a remote business, I think more so than a bricks and mortar business because you have to. There's so many. We mentioned some of the traits already, but you also have to show that passion and that sort of commitment and that, I suppose, affinity to that particular company. Obviously, darcy loves what she does, she loves who she works for and that when she emailed the CEO directly, she was able to transmit that through her email. So I think it's it's it's a. It's a. It's actually about, like Darcy said, is understanding, first and foremost, why you want to work for a company that you want to work for. You need to find that company that you have a connection with before you start to apply with resume after resume after resume. So, yeah, I love, I love that little example there, darcy. It's great, really, try to. You know, in many ways, what one good approach might be to, before you even start to to look at job boards, is to understand. Begin to understand yourself. Begin to understand what you know, your reasons why you want to work remotely. As Darcy said, it's not just about wanting to work remotely, because I think I hear a lot of you saying you know, I really want to work remotely. How do I go about it? That's you're putting it the wrong way round. It's it's first and foremost you. You need to understand what it is. You know why you want to do what you want to do, how you want to serve people. You know, and then you begin to build the bricks on top of that in terms of what companies might suit your, your why.

Speaker 2:
31:53

I suppose you could say Totally, and I actually remembered I wrote it down to piggyback off. That which which makes a lot of sense is you know, I think I've seen some things that are a deterrent, and this is for the audience, like for the audience, I've seen some things that are a deterrent. Sometimes people will apply to multiple positions that are in totally different departments, just because they want to work. Yes, our company. But, that being said, that shows us that you, you need to be good at the position that you're applying for. It's not just about wanting to work for the company too. What is your skill set? Where are you going to thrive? And really, really diving into that? It's huge. Another thing, too, is is make yourself stand out. Spend a lot of time on your application, reach out to the different hiring managers, do your research, read the blogs, read our like. We have a life at TaxDart blog and people read it all the time and they love it, and it's so cool for me to see applications that come in that somebody shows that they really spent some time diving into our culture. And, that being said, when you're applying for a remote job, so are hundreds of thousands of other people, and this isn't to discourage you, but because we're remote, we also have the ability from our end and any other remote company has this too to select from a very, very, very diverse and wide group of talent. So that's another thing to consider too, just like what you were saying earlier, like it's not just a spray and pray.

Speaker 1:
33:25

Yeah.

Speaker 2:
33:25

It doesn't work here, it doesn't work in the remote space. So I think being really conscious and cognizant of that is important.

Speaker 1:
33:32

No, that's, that's wonderful. What does it mean Once you're through the door and you've? You've got that magical application, the resume, and everything ties in nicely. What does the actual hiring process look like with TaxDart?

Speaker 2:
33:46

Sure, absolutely. So. We have kind of it set up right now and this isn't to say this isn't going to change in the future, but it's something that's worked for us for pretty well. We have about three interviews. So we have the hiring manager first reach out with you know, a second set of questions or whatever pertains to the role. Obviously, each role is different. Each hiring manager needs a different set of skill sets. If it's a development role, there may be a code review. If it's a marketing role, there may be a special project. Who knows? It totally depends on the hiring manager. If that kind of round goes through, we ask that it goes to a subcommittee. So we try to have at least one, if not multiple, people from the team that that person may be working on, interview the person. We want to hear different perspectives, and then from there it goes to a culture interview with either our chief technology, our CEO or myself, just really understanding that person's passion for remote work. Will they fit in with our team in terms of communication? Are they curious? Are they entrepreneurial? What is that? So then, we actually do a pretty interesting thing that very few companies do. I don't know if you already read about this, but we actually do a 30 to 90 day trial process, so it's a mutual trial. We set salary expectations prior to the trial. That person is paid hourly on a contract basis before accepting a full time offer if it works out. And we do this to make sure it's a mutual fit for both us and the employee and we've found that we've huge success with us with it. And then if that person is offered a full time role, we can seamlessly transition them through an onboarding process into being a full time employee.

Speaker 1:
35:34

Wow, that it sounds like an intense process. But well, I say intense, but it sounds like you're trying to cover all bases in terms of getting to know the person. You're not just throwing them in. It's almost like you're trying to give them as soft the landing as possible.

Speaker 2:
35:51

Absolutely A soft landing and from our perspective too, our goal is not just like we're growing rapidly, but our goal is not just to fit butts and seats. We don't want people just because we need them. We want people because we want them to be here a long time and we want them to be happy. We want them to be contributing to the company, but we also want to make sure it's a good fit for them. So hiring is expensive. If something doesn't work out, it's not just expensive financially but emotionally. It takes an emotional toll on the team. We put a ton of work into looking for candidates and through the hiring process and we don't want that time to go to waste, and we don't want to waste anybody's time either. So it is totally a mutual respect thing and we found that it really really helps with longevity in terms of people within the business. And yeah, we've just we've found that it works really well for us.

Speaker 1:
36:48

So that sounds great, sounds really good. And do you know what your? Because, again, when I was speaking to Nick, he was saying that the process, the hiring process, it's about 30 to 40 days. Do you know how long yours is, or is it? Is there no sort of?

Speaker 2:
37:08

particular. I don't want to answer that because I we don't have an exact fair enough. Yeah, we don't have an exact terms of timeline. I mean, I think ideally I'd say average. We try to get people through the interview and pipeline process to a trial within, yeah, 30 to 40, sorry, not like three to four weeks, but I wouldn't. I don't really want to say that solidly because that changes from role to role. And then, obviously, if somebody's coming on trial, sometimes that person's still working a full time job and so they're going to do a longer trial because they're taking time off from their job or they're going to be working nights or whatever that is. Sometimes people know it's a fit and they leave their job to come full time on trial. It's so dependent on situation and that's why we're flexible with it, because we understand if this person's the right candidate in the right fit, like both them and us are going to work hard to make sure that both parties are satisfied.

Speaker 1:
38:05

Of course, and for anybody who may be thinking about applying to a role with with TaxJar now or in the future where do you hire people geographically?

Speaker 2:
38:19

In terms of so at the moment we are pretty much only hiring within the US. That's not to say that you can't travel when you work, Just we are a US based company working on US sales tax, so we would love to grow internationally in the future. We're just not quite there yet. So if you are a US resident or citizen, please think about applying and check out our open roles.

Speaker 1:
38:43

They're all posted at TaxJarcom slash jobs, so yeah sounds good and, like Darcy said, you need to check, even if you're not looking at the minute or even if there aren't roles that suit you. I think it's a good idea to it's always a good idea, I think. Anyway, when you're looking, you sort of putting together your list of your ideal remote company to work for is to look through the whole website from top to bottom. Learn about the people, learn about Darcy, learn, go to her LinkedIn profile and see what she's done before, prior to this, and try and find you know. Go to the blog. The blog tells you so much about the culture of the business, tells you about the plans for the business or what the business has done. So if you can be as informed as possible, you can be in a position that when a role does come up that suits you, you'll be in a position to actually really have an understanding and be able to put that into your application. So I think it's a great idea just to have a look. So that's taxjarcom, forward slash jobs and Darcy, what's in terms of that? We talked very, very briefly about diversity early on. We only touched on it slightly. I mean, it's a challenge enough for Bixx and Morta businesses to sort of keep dive. You know a diverse range of people within the business. Do you have any sort of initiatives or any ways in which you sort of try to attract a diverse audience into taxjar?

Speaker 2:
40:15

Sure, I mean, this is definitely something as we grow we are looking a lot more into in terms of finding additional platforms to to advertise our jobs on, and whether that be a job platform that really has a lot of women developers who are on that platform. I'm actually in the process of hiring a recruiter right now.

Speaker 1:
40:40

I've lost you again, Darcy.

Speaker 2:
40:41

Out there. Oh, how about now?

Speaker 1:
40:45

Oh yeah, I've got you again.

Speaker 2:
40:47

You're back, I'm not sure what's up, but it's pretty strong. So, yes, there we're. Definitely we're always on the lookout for other platforms that reach a more diverse audience other than just LinkedIn, or we work remotely or a jobs board. That being said, I'm actually in the process of hiring a recruiter on the employee experience team, oh whoa. So if anybody has a recruiting, remote recruiting experience and technical recruiting, please feel free to reach out. That is definitely something that is on the roadmap and something we're always, always looking. Looking for is kind of finding more diverse ways and to find a more diverse crowd to attract for tax jar.

Speaker 1:
41:26

So anybody. Well, in fact, I'll put the word out as well on my side of things, because I have a recruitment background myself. So I'll see if anybody is looking for a technical recruitment job and what will that, what kind of just? So people have got a clue as to the sorts of roles that person may be recruiting for. Are there any particular stacks that you that you use within technical stacks, that you use within tax jar, that you know the recruiter might be looking at?

Speaker 2:
41:53

So I would just say, from kind of a more high level overview, the person that we're looking for, we really want to not only build the technical team, but also they'll be hiring for all the roles in our company. So, marketing, customer service, so kind of being able to have the skills that transcend across all, all teams, cross functionally, and this person would be our lead recruiter. They'd be our first recruiter we're 51 people, 52 people, excuse me and they'd be building out a recruiting team also as we grow. So we really want to be able to proactively find candidates. We have a lot of candidates that are coming to us right now, but it's a matter of really finding those quality candidates and having somebody who's who's on that, on the lookout, sourcing, and who's working really really closely with our hiring managers to deeply understand the culture and the roles that need to be filled. That, that relationship between hiring manager and recruiter, and also the recruiter and myself. We're looking for such a strong relationship there. So that's really what I'm looking for at the moment and textures looking for.

Speaker 1:
42:57

And with that said, I mean that recruit is probably going to have to deal with lots and lots of resumes, right? Because, yeah, it's very popular to. It seems very popular right now to you know, to apply for jobs in remote companies, and I think again, we talked about this a little bit earlier on but you have to find a way of standing out to that recruiter, or to Darcy, or to the CEO. You have to find a way of making your resume different in some way, or at least stand out from the others that are there. Darcy, from your perspective, what really attracts you to somebody's resume other than the, obviously, the you mentioned the entrepreneurial things? Are there any other things that attract you to somebody's resume?

Speaker 2:
43:43

Sure, I would definitely say obvious. I mean it's a given experience, the experience within the role, and have they used the tools? Have they done this before? It's definitely not a role for somebody. It's somebody who does have experience doing this. But I would say again, curiosity, the thoroughness in an application, the sense that this person really, really wants to work as a team, I mean we have. We really strive hard not to hire people with a strong ego. We are a team. Even our CEO does success tickets. I mean we are a team and there is not hierarchy here In terms of really working together. We are all open and willing to work together. So that is something that's huge that I look for in somebody who's applying.

Speaker 1:
44:37

Sounds good. Sounds too good to be true, but it sounds like it sounds great to me.

Speaker 2:
44:42

It's a pretty great company. I feel so lucky to work here and the team is just so incredible and has such an incredible skill does a diverse skill set and also from a personality standpoint. There are people who are amazing bakers that you would never know. That we've learned throughout kind of our social channels and it really I get excited every day to wake up and walk to my desk in my slippers and hop online and and really really do some seriously cool work in the world and really help e-commerce sellers solve this problem.

Speaker 1:
45:20

No, it's well. I mean, you have found what a lot of people spend a lot of their life looking for, and I think I think you should really listen back to what Darcy has said, because it's just I love. I love actually interviewing people like you, darcy, because it's just it gives you that, it gives people who are watching that hope that they too can actually find their niche. If you do it in the right way, you got about in the right way and you you know you try your best to put in fact. It does take a little bit of effort on your part. You can really do it, and Darcy has Darcy's done it and it sounds like she's found the best place to work she's ever worked in, maybe.

Speaker 2:
46:04

Totally, and it's the best role for me, though and I think that's something to note too it's not just because I work for a remote company and remote is my number one and I love the people I work with and I love our goals and our mission but before I found this role, I really did some soul searching and what I wanted and what were non-negotiables for me, and also I did some strength finding courses. I did. What are my strengths? What? What can I shine in? What can I do? Because I tend to have a sense and I think a lot of people have this is oh, I should be good at everything. Why don't I know how to do this? Like, why am I not the best recruiter, or or whatever that may mean? Because I kind of wear a recruiting hat right now. But, that being said, you start to learn what you are good at and be confident in that and look for roles that really match up with that within the remote space. Like it's not all about just wanting to work remotely, and I think taking that time for you, whether it means you end up in a remote role or not, is only going to benefit you.

Speaker 1:
47:05

Yeah, that again that's a massive, a massive piece of advice. There is that I think usually when people are looking for a role, it's usually from a place of panic, maybe sometimes, or a place of you know, and with that panic you tend to jump at something or really be quite quick to actually dive into something that may not suit you. But if you take the time out, as Darcy is suggesting, is to not just think about working remotely. Think about your why. Think about your strengths. Really think about what you're good at, because Darcy's and other other recruiters are going to look at what strengths you can bring to the company. It's about what you can give. It's not about what the company gives to you. I mean, in some part it is, but it's very much in the application process is about what you have to offer to the company. So another great piece of advice, Darcy, thank you so much for that. And from it you know my, I suppose, one. Is there any sort of last piece of advice that you can, that you can put our way or put, yeah, if we're looking for a remote role, or if we're looking for a not just a remote role, looking for our next, our next company? Is any one last piece of advice or one thing that we shouldn't do?

Speaker 2:
48:26

Oh you shouldn't do, I don't, okay. Well, sorry, what you shouldn't do. Don't ever just say you want to work from home.

Speaker 1:
48:34

Yes, yes.

Speaker 2:
48:36

I would say and this really is what so much of what we talked about in the last hour, alex, is. I would say to everyone find your why. Find your why, why you want to work for the company that you're looking for. Learn everything about it. Does it match up with your values? Does it match up with something you want to do? Do you see yourself there long term? What can you contribute to the company? But I think something we really try to do with with everything we do at Taxjar like we try to find the why behind every release, behind you know, any sort of implementation from a cultural standpoint that I put in, like I don't want to just be throwing stuff out there that becomes noise, right? What is the why behind it? And and why are you doing it and what are results that we can see from it? So I would definitely say that's the biggest thing is find your why on a personal level and then look for companies that really match up with your values. And they're out there. There's more remote companies that are launching every day or becoming more popular every day. This is the new future of work and I personally don't think and I truly believe it's not going away, so that would be my final piece of advice, darcy, it's been an absolute blast talking to you.

Speaker 1:
49:49

I've really enjoyed it. I've learned some things myself as well, and I'm sure everybody watching has learned a whole heap in terms of how they should go about, you know, applying to a company like Taxjar. So everybody wants again that URL is taxjarcom forward slash jobs. But before you well, once you've looked at that, before you even say anything or write anything to anybody at Taxjar, you need to look through the whole website. So, darcy, I want to say thank you and yeah, all the best for the future, and yeah, we'll be. We'll be looking forward to hearing more from Taxjar.

Speaker 2:
50:22

Awesome. Thank you so much, alex. It was a pleasure to speak with you, too, and we'll stay in touch.

Speaker 1:
50:27

We'll do. Sounds good, all right.

Speaker 2:
50:29

Thanks Alex, thanks Darcy.

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