The luck of the bol tech group | Weblog | bol.com


Communities within a community

“When I started working at bol in 2019, our tech community consisted of ‘only’ 500 to 600 people. Now, it’s nearly a thousand.” Michaela remembers that time well. “It was a bit of a search in the beginning. The desire within the community to start initiatives was there, but it was up to me to streamline processes and make them work. So, I started by reaching out to our engineers.”

Michaela began mapping out ideas and desires. “It quickly became clear to me that engineers and data scientists have an immense intrinsic drive to share knowledge and information. For this reason, we have set up several subcommunities. Think of the Women in Tech community, the Stream Processing Guild, and the GO community. Each community has its own group of ‘firestarters’; bol employees with whom we determine the monthly activities calendar and organise events. These could be roundtables, hackathons, or knowledge shares. Our motto? Engage, Grow, and Attract. We want to continuously encourage our tech employees, provide good onboarding and training, and excite talented IT professionals outside bol too.”

Tech-specific onboarding

Providing specific onboarding just for tech has only been a recent development. Michaela explains: “The methods used within tech are quite specific, and we have created lots of tailormade tools within our bol landscape. For this reason, we developed multiple workshops with our engineers as part of the general bol onboarding. In these workshops we cover our processes, but we also pay attention to communication methods, tools, and of course, the community. We find that this way of onboarding builds trust right from the start, and new colleagues now feel confident enough to immediately start working with bol-specific tools.”

With the addition of onboarding tasks to her workload and a significant influx of new engineers, Michaela found herself in need of assistance. One new colleague came on board, followed quickly by another. “I have now transitioned into a leadership position, where I deal with much more than just community guidance,” she reflects. “Not one day at bol is the same for me, and my role knows very few boundaries. That’s what truly excites me about my job – I have the freedom to mould it according to my vision. The trust I have been given from day one is incredibly rare and special, and I treasure that immensely.”

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