2020 has been a year of dramatic transformation for numerous industries, companies, and professionals around the world. We all know people who have lost jobs or have been forced to adapt their careers to the new realities thrust upon us by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Having gone through tough times, many knowledge workers are likely to become more cautious when choosing their new employer. Instead of making their decision based on fun office perks like video games or snacks in the office, they might look for more substantial benefits and signs that the potential employer values his or her team’s well-being above all.

We at TWINO aren’t afraid to admit that this year has also changed our approach to many things. First of all, we decided to switch to a hybrid office model that promotes a balance between office days and working from home. Such a shift entails more than a different office setup – it leaves a significant impact on our company culture.

Subsequently, we set out to review and update our employee benefits packages. While we still want to keep the hip and “startupy” type of office perks, like fun outings and games in the office, we are shifting our focus to more meaningful oriented employee benefits.

Benefits focused on employee work-life balance

The Work From Anywhere (WFA) model that we’ve recently adopted is in itself a benefit that empowers our people to find their “productive and happy place” and encourages a balanced lifestyle.

This means that employees can opt to work from home or any other place of their choosing for at least half of the week without having to explain or ask for permission. A TWINO survey carried out during the Covid-19 lockdown showed that our employees felt productive and happy in the remote work model. So why not continue this positive pattern even in times after the pandemic?

We are curious to see if such a non-office-centric working pattern will prompt more people to become more flexible and maybe even move out of the city to greener, calmer living areas.

But as we see it, Work From Anywhere is just the beginning.

Other work-life balance focused benefits include short summer Fridays, New Year’s week off, and an additional holiday on a day of choice.

I am convinced that it’s our duty to take care of our team. This goes hand in hand with trusting our employees to use the benefits in a way that also positively impacts their work performance. In other words – we believe that happy, rested and mindful people are also productive and positive at work.

Finally, we realize that employees with families value work-life balance even more. In addition to being able to take an extra holiday for your or your kid’s birthday or graduation, we also love to surprise the youngest members of the TWINO family with gifts and a specially organized Kid’s Day.

Employee well-being and mental health as a top priority

An excellent work-life balance naturally leads to improved health and well-being. Still, our aim is to put even more emphasis on employee wellness.

During the pandemic I took time to think and refocus my priorities. My main lesson from this time was this:

Staying healthy, active, and fit matters a lot more than many of us think. We each have to take care of ourselves and when we are well and healthy, we have a duty to take care of the society and people around us.

To help our team fulfill this notion in life, we have made well-being packages an integral part of the TWINO reward system. All employees get access to a yearly budget to spend on either health insurance, gym membership, or equipment to set up remote workspaces. On top of that, all employees are provided with computer glasses that protect against the blue-violet and LED light of digital devices.

We also encourage our employees to take health days if they are feeling a little under the weather. Instead of applying for sick leave straight away, our people can rest for a couple of days and return with renewed energy.

Finally, to inspire, guide, and support our team members to live a healthier and happier life, we provide everyone with a free subscription to the mindfulness and meditation app Headspace.

Teambuilding events are even more important in the remote work model

Even if our employees will work from the office less than before, we still don’t want to lose the dynamic startup vibe for those days when we are in the office. When our people don’t feel like working remotely, they are welcome to games and meetups at the lively TWINO office.

It might seem that having more remote workdays means growing apart, but it’s not how we see it. On the contrary – we are constantly looking for new opportunities for reuniting the team to make up for the lack of daily micro-interactions in the office.

Naturally, workations (a vacation that combines business and leisure) and summer / winter team building events are something we love to do. There’s always something going on at TWINO – be it social events, traditions or celebrations.

Growth is the driving force for Millenial and GenZ employees

It’s a proven fact that intrinsic motivators like growth and progress are extremely important for Millenials and Gen Z. As most of TWINO’s employees represent these two generations, we realize the importance of providing educational and career growth opportunities to them.

We are proud to say that 55% of TWINO’s Group Management has been promoted internally. We believe in people’s potential, not in the years behind the desk – therefore, employees who show initiative are rewarded with greater responsibility.

As for self-education, employees can access an individual yearly development budget that they can spend on inspiring conferences, private mentoring sessions, or other forms of self-development. Besides, we offer an individual training program we call Growth Camp that allows our people to gain new skills through interactive, targeted training sessions or workshops.

One afternoon a month, we welcome inspiring people from various industries to the TWINO office to share their knowledge and experience with our team.

And, last but not least, we believe in education. Our employees who study are granted up to two weeks of paid educational leave.

Taking the best of the startup mentality

Being a part of a young and dynamic work environment is another strong motivator for the TWINO community. As members of the startup world, we embrace this lifestyle with open arms and pride in being a part of the buzzing FinTech industry. Our flexibility and anti-bureaucratic mindset let us act as trendsetters for many other companies.

So what can our employees gain from this startup mindset?

Apart from having fun and talented colleagues and a heavy social agenda, we allow our employees to become investors in the TWINO Investment platform. We reward each employee with a sign-up investment bonus for the platform.

And, as a startup, our work environment is extremely purpose-driven, dynamic, and always welcoming creative solutions. This manifests in our determination to not stop at updated employee benefits, but continue growing and getting better. The next tasks on our list are updating leadership skill sets and renewing company values.

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Anastasija Oleinika

TWINO Group CEO

As TWINO Group Chief Executive Officer Anastasija drives overall success of the business and increasing shareholder value through execution of the strategy. Before her role as CEO of TWINO Group, Anastasija was Group CFO for three years as well as Group COO for a year.

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