Becoming a Survivor in corona times

By: Taco Zoetemelk, Digital Engineer

On November 1st, I started working at Digital Survival Company. Lately, I get asked questions about changing jobs during this weird (COVID-19) time. Some questions I got:

  • Why did you decide to look for a new job in these times?
  • Isn’t it scary to change jobs in these times?
  • How does onboarding go in times where it is discouraged to go to the office?
  • Did you make the right decision?
  • How do you connect with your colleagues?

As it has been over a month since I joined Digital Survival Company, it’s time to put some stuff on paper to share this with the world. First of all, I wasn’t really looking for a new job. I was perfectly happy with my previous job and my employer. Then one day I was contacted by someone from Digital Survival Company via LinkedIn stating that he found my profile and that there were some interesting items on there. It happens often that someone on LinkedIn contacts me with a job offer. I’m sure you’ll recognize that. In 99 out of 100 cases my answer is that I am happy with my current job and that I am not looking for something new. Usually, then I reply with the question if they need any assistance in filling the role because my previous company I was also in a professional services business, and had a good network of engineers with a skill set and experience similar to mine.

This time it was different because the person who contacted me had read my profile in detail, seemed to really care, and made me curious about the company immediately. After a phone call, a Teams meeting, and a face-to-face meeting (with proper distancing) I had some thinking to do. Some of the questions listed above were running through my head as well. Changing jobs is always scary, whether it’s during COVID-19 when you are not happy with your current job or even when you a perfectly fine with it. When you change jobs you always know what you have but not what you are going to get.

But, didn’t I think about COVID-19 and all measures that are currently in place? Of course, I did. But how does that impact my decision regarding the job change? I’ve been working from home since march of 2020. I’ve been to the office of one of my clients two times during this period. Once for a laptop replacement (newer one) and once to hand in that same new and shiny laptop about a month later. I’ve been to my employer’s office a little more often, but still in the single digits. This means I’m used to working remotely, contacting colleagues, or having meetings using my phone, chat programs, and video conferencing. How will that be any different when I change jobs? I decided that this should not impact my decision.

So what did I use to make my decision? Anything that you would normally think of for deciding if you want to change jobs:

  • travel time
  • salary
  • secondary perks
  • company car
  • people you meet during job interviews
  • company size
  • work responsibilities
  • home situation

And probably a lot of stuff I’ve considered but I have already forgotten. Eventually, my mind was made up and I went for it! November 2nd was my first working day at Digital Survival Company. It so happens that I was not the only person starting, there were 4 new Survivors! After a personal introduction of the management team, we got some in-depth information about the company, way of working, and the customers. Onboarding at Digital Survival Company is well thought out and will get you started pretty fast.

At Digital Survival Company we use Microsoft Teams as the main communication tool. Meetings, stand-ups, and even one-on-one conversations can be done digitally. There is, due to corona, a (limited) possibility to go to the great office, which allows you to have real face-to-face interactions, at a safe distance. Currently, for me, that means that I try to go to the office about once or twice a week.

To conclude: I had a very warm welcome within Digital Survival Company. From onboarding to the colleagues who help me with getting to know the environment, to Survivors just giving you a call on Teams to introduce themselves and trying to get to know me. There have even been several evenings where a maximum of 4 Survivors would come to the office and prepare a meal together (at safe distance). Not only to get to know each other but also to stay connected with each other.

So did I make the right decision? I’m having great fun, learning new stuff, and work for a growing and fun company. So my answer is definitely YES! Thank you Digital Survival Company for the warm welcome!

Want to join our team? Let’s connect, let’s drink a cup of virtual coffee…

Taco Zoetemelk