[January 2019 update - with the new year underway and swarms up and running, we're now re-launching the trial process, which had been on hold in the later part of Q4 2018.]
We consider your first weeks/months of contributing as a trial period. The trial period length and brief varies by hiring route, so please do ask anyone in the People Ops team if you're not sure about how long your trial lasts or what you'll be evaluated on.
A trial period can vary greatly - from a few weeks' part-time work on a specific project, to three-months' full-time work in the actual role itself.
During your trial you'll be treated like, and work alongside, other Status contributors - you’ll have access to the same information, software, meetups, and learning opportunities. We’re already confident that you will be a great addition, or we wouldn’t have extended an offer!
However, we have seen that sometimes things just don’t work out.
Working remotely, on new tech, with a super flexible team that’s constantly iterating and evolving, isn’t to everyone's tastes, and we want to be very upfront about what we expect from everyone in the team.
A fixed-term tryout will allow enough time to get to know each other and fully appreciate what you can bring to the team. It might also be that you decide that Status isn’t what you’re looking for, and that’s okay too.
What we expect
- We expect you to show us you can prioritize correctly, get things done, and find answers in an increasingly autonomous way. In most teams there will be a first project scoped out for you. Regardless of that being the case make sure you ask your lead from where you can start, and clarify expectations for your role / seek feedback on how you’re doing, early and regularly.
- We expect you to be accountable for your goals and deadlines. We don’t micromanage - if by any chance you realize you’re stuck, make sure to flag it, and to discuss within your swarm if it would be best to re-prioritize.
- We don’t see each other much, and written communication is what we see the most from each other. We’d like for everyone to be clear, friendly, and helpful to everyone else.
- We expect a consistent and high volume of communication to keep your fellow contributors updated on your progress.
- We believe that everyone should contribute to the product and to our organizational culture. If you see anything that could be improved, and have an idea to make it better - bring it up. If you see that a co-contributor is stuck, offer to help or to ping someone who can. We’re all in this together!
- Read this article. It gives a sense of what qualities are most important to be successful in any role here at Status.
- For those less experienced in the blockchain/crypto space - jump in and immerse yourself in the ecosystem and get to better understand our principles and mission. This is a huge topic and we don't expect everyone to become an expert, but we would be super impressed to see that you're committed to continuously learning and developing your knowledge.
- Try to model our principles in all that you do at Status.
Trial period length
A typical trial period is three months for a full time contributor. For contributors that have contributed on a freelance or part time basis prior to converting to full time, the trial period after coming on full time will typically be pro-rated according to the number of hours already worked.
Using 480 total hours of trial work as a baseline, we roughly calculate the full time trial period according to:
- if part time trial was 0 - 160 hours: then 3 month full time trial.
- if part time trial was 160 - 320 hours then 2 months trial.
- if part time trial was 320 - 480 hours then 1 month trial.
Your onboarding checklist in BambooHR will show the trial milestones, but if you're not sure, People Ops will be happy to guide you.
For full time trials of two months or less, we'll do one feedback round at the end-trial point (skipping the
mid-trial feedback), versus splitting the trial up into two short time periods.
Around mid-way through the trial period, you'll be prompted to share with People Ops the names of 6+ contributors that you work closely with, plus a brief description of your role/objectives. People Ops will reach out to those contributors and ask them to complete this mid-trial feedback form.
We'll ask you to pick out a diverse group of feedback providers, including people across teams and with whom you have different levels of interaction and relationship. Even better if you can suggest team members you may have had collaboration or communication difficulties with in the past. We're looking for the broadest range of evaluations of your work to help you uncover any blind spots, and make sure the trial process is as fair as possible.
People Ops will aggregate the results within 1-2 weeks and share these back to you and your team/swarm lead in the following format:
Knowledge of ecosystem XX/5
Overall average XX/5
Scores are out of five, with one being lowest, and five being highest.
We don't have a pre-defined numerical score in mind as an indicator that your trial is going well and is on track to be a success, and each review is evaluated individually on its own merits. The rating score is an indicative number meant to help you quickly identify areas for improvement, but you should also focus on the commentary, particularly developmental suggestions.
People Ops will offer to have a call with you to discuss the feedback you received (it's optional - completely up to you!), and will let you know if there is insufficient progress made that would warrant ending the trial early.
At the end of the trial period, you'll be prompted to drive your own feedback round and send this end-trial feedback form to your chosen group of co-contributors.
We introduced a
Strong Yes vouch option in one of the final questions on the feedback form, where your feedback givers can choose to award one of three annual
Strong Yes vouches for you to stay on as a core contributor. We hope that because respondents are limited to only giving a certain number of these in a year, they will be a meaningful signal of recommendation.
People Ops will aggregate the results within 1-2 weeks and share these back to you and your team/swarm lead in a format similar to the above. At that time, your lead will make and communicate a decision on whether your trial has been successful.
We hope for all our trials to be successful, but in case we don't see the potential for a productive future collaboration together, People Ops will then reach out to you about ending your contract with Status and any relevant offboarding logistics.
Who has access to the trial feedback?
The People Ops team, your team/swarm lead, Carl, Jarrad, and Nabil.
Who makes the decision on trial outcome?
The contributor's team/swarm lead, who is responsible for the hiring/staffing decisions on their project. People Ops acts as a faciliator in the process.
Can I give feedback anonymously?
Yes - you can leave the
Name field blank in the feedback form if you'd like to provide fully anonymous feedback.
How do you evaluate whether a trial is successful?
This is based on the feedback received via the trial process. We try to ask a diverse set of questions in the feedback form to get a mix of data points - numerical, qualitative, comparative. All responses received are aggregated. Work output not showing advancement of the Principles, nor important qualities like productivity, autonomy, or visibility, would be indicators of a poor role fit. Contribution not being impactful overall to Status's objectives, or developmental feedback not being addressed would also be reasons to end the trial.
Why do you ask so many feedback providers?
We used to ask for 4 people to provide feedback, but found that that would typically translate to 3 responses coming back. We felt that was not a solid enough amount of evidence to make such an important decision on, so we wanted to get more voices and opinions involved in the process.
How will I know what happens with someone's trial?
We want to be sensitive to each person's privacy by not discussing details about their performance with other contributors. As such, we don't (at this point in time) announce whether trials were successful or not, but we're open to changing that if people would prefer this was made transparent. We'd likely not be able to give specific details of why a trial outcome was reached, though.
This process seems pretty centralised, what's up with that?
You're not wrong! The trial feedback process was an interim solution to try to make hiring as high quality and consistent across Status, but it has stuck in the absence of better alternatives being identified. It's far from perfect, and we're always looking to adapt and iterate it, so share your ideas with People Ops and we'll incorporate them!