Vivian Maza – Ultimate Software's Blog http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com Thoughts on Putting People First in the Workplace Tue, 23 May 2017 19:20:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.5 Inspired By People http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/inspired-by-people/ http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/inspired-by-people/#comments Fri, 10 Mar 2017 21:30:55 +0000 http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/?p=934 What inspires you? What wakes you up each morning and motivates you to face life’s challenges? At Ultimate Software, we’re inspired by people. It’s why we started our company more than 26 years ago, when we recognized an amazing opportunity to put people first: to provide the “ultimate” HR and payroll software that would inspire […]

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What inspires you? What wakes you up each morning and motivates you to face life’s challenges?

At Ultimate Software, we’re inspired by people. It’s why we started our company more than 26 years ago, when we recognized an amazing opportunity to put people first: to provide the “ultimate” HR and payroll software that would inspire people in the workplace and empower them to achieve more.

We’re humbled and honored to be named one of Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For six years in a row, and the #1 Best Large Workplace in Technology the past two years. We’re fortunate to be here, and we know we’re here because of people—our employees, our customers, and our communities. They continue to inspire us, to better ourselves and to always do the right thing. So we look to pay it forward and inspire others in return. We wake up every day thinking of new ways to care for our people and to make Ultimate not just a great place to work, but a second home.

Establishing an Inspiring Home Away From Home

First, we focus on fostering a supportive, family-like environment where colleagues listen to one another, feel comfortable sharing ideas and taking risks, and work together to achieve their goals as a team. This positive, productive atmosphere inspires our employees to create innovative products that help people work more efficiently and effectively. They’re also motivated to constantly do more for our customers, providing extraordinary service and personalized, proactive support.

Next, we ensure our employees have the tools, resources, and technology they need to thrive as professionals. We’ve implemented a companywide performance management program in which employees set goals, track their progress, and have ongoing conversations with team leaders rather than a quick, once-annual review. We also offer a variety of flexible opportunities for continuous learning, from on-demand online training courses to hands-on leadership development workshops, so our people can gain new skills and grow their careers. This in addition to internship programs providing real-life experience, assistance for tuition and certifications, and specialized training for those in customer-facing service roles.

Supporting Our People’s Whole Selves

We also realize the need to support our employees not only as professionals, but as people. Since 2014, we’ve formed three diverse Communities of Interest: PrideUS for our LGBTQIA community; Women in Leadership for employees at all job levels; and UltiVETS for veterans and active service members. Each hosts several networking and social events throughout the year, including organizing Ultimate’s Inter-Office Pride Days, sponsoring seminars for Girls Who Code, and hosting barbeques for veterans. These groups bring us together to share and celebrate our unique personal experiences, and everyone at Ultimate is invited to get involved in some way.

No matter how much we do for our people, though, we’re always most inspired by what they do for others. Near and dear to us are the heartfelt contributions our employees continue to make in the community. Over the past year, 93% of our employees have participated in charitable giving. They’ve utilized their company service days to volunteer at nonprofit organizations. They’ve donated to charitable causes and helped those impacted by natural disasters, terrorism, and other unexpected events. They’ve stepped up to support colleagues and families who’ve endured personal tragedies. We are genuinely moved by the unending selflessness of our people.

From day one, we set out to create more than a successful HR technology company. We wanted to build a workplace that inspires people to trust, respect, and care. A company that encourages employees to bring their best selves—their whole selves—to work each and every day. A family that always looks after its own, in good and bad times, and makes a meaningful difference by giving.

I am extremely proud to say, that’s US.

Through our employee-centric culture, HR cloud solutions, collaborative customer service, and charitable efforts in the community, we hope we inspire others to become “People First” companies, too. Because we believe that when people succeed, companies succeed.

So, what inspires you? For US, we’re inspired by people.

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An Open Letter to Our People on Employee Appreciation Day http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/employee-appreciation-day-2017/ http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/employee-appreciation-day-2017/#comments Fri, 03 Mar 2017 12:30:47 +0000 http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/?p=922 Every year on the first Friday in March, one of my favorite holidays is celebrated: Employee Appreciation Day. While we make every effort to put people first every day, I wanted to take this special occasion to thank our incredible employees for their relentless passion, loyalty, determination, and drive. Fortune ranked us the #1 Best […]

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Every year on the first Friday in March, one of my favorite holidays is celebrated: Employee Appreciation Day. While we make every effort to put people first every day, I wanted to take this special occasion to thank our incredible employees for their relentless passion, loyalty, determination, and drive. Fortune ranked us the #1 Best Large Workplace in Technology—twice—because you, our people, are the best. And for that, we’re eternally grateful.

Thank you for your dedication to designing the industry’s most innovative, intuitive HCM software.

Thank you for providing award-winning, white-glove service to every customer, every day.

Thank you for being you, and for sharing your unique ideas, stories, and experiences with us.

Thank you for keeping our “People First” culture alive.

Ultimate Software employees will be taking over our account on Facebook LIVE to share their proudest moments and to thank the people who’ve had the biggest impact on their lives and careers. Stay tuned for a visit from our monthly ice cream truck.

Happy Employee Appreciation Day!

Thank you for making US who we are.

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Best Companies Have C.H.A.R.A.C.T.E.R. http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/fortune-100-best-companies-to-work-for-2016/ http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/fortune-100-best-companies-to-work-for-2016/#comments Thu, 03 Mar 2016 13:54:19 +0000 http://blog.ultimatesoftware.com/?p=507 It’s with great pride we announce FORTUNE has named Ultimate Software one of the Best Companies to Work For in America for the fifth consecutive year, after having also ranked Ultimate the #1 Best Large Workplace in Technology. We hold these prestigious honors close to our hearts because, from the beginning, we’ve focused 100% on […]

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It’s with great pride we announce FORTUNE has named Ultimate Software one of the Best Companies to Work For in America for the fifth consecutive year, after having also ranked Ultimate the #1 Best Large Workplace in Technology.

We hold these prestigious honors close to our hearts because, from the beginning, we’ve focused 100% on people—every day, innovating and implementing new ways of putting them first.

Ultimate Software ranked #15 on FORTUNE's 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2016.

Ultimate Software ranked #15 on FORTUNE Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For in 2016.

That effort starts with our employees, and it extends to our customers. Over the past 25 years, we’ve created and nurtured a culture of care at Ultimate. We do all in our power to care for our people and provide the best workplace. This environment empowers our employees to take care of our customers, by developing the best technology and providing the best service, so people everywhere can achieve their best.

As Ultimate’s Chief People Officer, I’m often asked what it really means to be a “Best Company.” The truth is, there’s no single answer. It’s a combination of many factors, values, and traits. But we at Ultimate do believe Best Companies are built on C.H.A.R.A.C.T.E.R.

Commitment
Best Companies are committed to their people, their customers, and their community. They equip their employees with the tools and resources necessary for success, and have programs in place that promote professional and personal growth. They consider their customers lifelong partners, remaining available to lend a helping hand at any time and going the extra step to provide proactive support. They treat philanthropy as a top priority, and focus on making a difference in the community through companywide service.

Honesty
Best Companies believe honesty’s the best policy. They have honest people at all levels, and thrive on transparency. Their executives speak openly about the company’s past and current performance, communicate short- and long-term objectives, and give insight into the future direction of business. Managers share honest expectations of and with their team members. Employees are honest with each other, exchanging thoughtful feedback and working together toward success.

Accountability
Best Companies hold themselves accountable for their actions, and for the outcomes of those actions. They recognize and admit when they’re wrong, but they don’t spend time dwelling on momentary setbacks. Instead, they go right back to working on a viable solution capable of solving the problem and preventing similar issues from occurring in the future.

Respect
Best Companies respect, accept, and value all people from all backgrounds. They respect the opinions and beliefs of others, including those different from their own. They solicit, listen to, and learn from people’s ideas, constantly asking, “How can we do even better?” They treat all people equally and know how each person’s unique talents and experiences contribute to the big picture.

Attitude
Best Companies understand attitude makes all the difference—and they always keep it positive. Positive energy is contagious. It permeates the company and helps create the kind of amazing workplace culture that fosters innovation, productivity, and overall success. The people at Best Companies are happy, and everyone knows it. They greet strangers with smiles and trade handshakes for hugs.

Courage
Best Companies have courageous people who are willing to take calculated risks, and who are eager to present new ideas rather than settling for “the way it’s always been done.” They’re composed of doers—people who are constantly developing and enacting ways to make their coworkers, their company, their customers, and themselves better. They’re not afraid to fail, because they know failure is just a brief stop on the road to success.

Trust
Best Companies trust in the ability of great people to achieve greatness. They have leaders who establish a solid foundation and set a core mission, and then trust their people to take action and bring that mission to fruition. They trust in their people to always do the right thing. Likewise, employees trust in company leadership to always do right by them, always treat them fairly, and always tell them the truth (remember: honesty’s key).

Ethics
Best Companies adopt a specific set of ethical standards that correspond with their intrinsic values. Their people are moral, they have integrity, and they all adhere to these virtues. They always uphold company values and they never compromise personal principles, especially when challenged or faced with adversity. They comply with all governmental laws and regulations, and conduct themselves with nobility.

Responsibility
Best Companies have people who won’t shy away from responsibility. They take the lead, assume ownership of projects, and see these initiatives all the way through. They’re dependable, ever-present, and can always be called upon, even long after a program’s been implemented. Because Best Companies have the best people, and the best people know their work is never truly finished.

Becoming a Best Company is a comprehensive process that requires ongoing effort and focus. It’s an evolution that won’t happen overnight. But the inherent results of being the best serve to benefit your people, your customers, and your business for years to come.

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