A Day in the Life of a Remote Company: Pathrise

Day in the Life of a Remote Company

A YC-backed recruiting startup with $3 million in venture capital, the fully remote team at Pathrise helps students and professionals land their dream jobs. Think of it as an incubator for careers. Mentors work 1-on-1 with fellows to optimize their job search materials like resumes, ace interviews, and negotiate their salary 10%-20% higher on average. The program is free until fellows land a job.
Although founded with a hybrid model, 2020’s global shift to a virtual workplace transformed Pathrise’s approach to remote work for both their fellows and teammates. Here’s how Pathrise adapted to the rise of remote work.

Company Info

Company name: Pathrise  
HQ: San Francisco. Although shaped by Bay Area tech culture, we’ve always been mostly remote. But most of our mentors are still located in the Bay area and we do organize meetups frequently.
How many people are in your organization? About 91 full-time teammates and counting.
How many countries or cities do your team span across? Although fellows in our program must be eligible to work in the US or Canada, we hire contractors all over the world, from Nepal to Miami. Since we focus on helping people break into tech, most of our mentors and staff are based in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Day in the Life of Pathrise

Since we’re fully remote with hundreds of different teammates fulfilling different roles, no one schedule looks exactly the same. In fact, most of our employees set their own schedules. But here’s a peek into the typical day for our admissions manager.
9am - 10am: Check inbox and respond to Slack messages from teammates.
10am - 12pm: Take calls talking with prospective fellows on admissions interviews to evaluate them as prospects. Collect feedback and discuss next steps with fellows at the end of their trial.
12pm - 1pm: Lunch and a break.
1pm - 5pm: Meetings, calls with fellows, and project work. Calls with colleagues to discuss strategy and projects such as revamping the admissions manager onboarding and training process.

Why and how did Pathrise decide to go remote?

Our vision had always been to work with students and professionals all over the world, so a remote team just made sense for our remote fellows. Long before remote work was the norm, we felt it was important for job-seekers to advocate for a work environment that worked for them. Often, this meant helping fellows in our program find remote friendly opportunities or negotiate a hybrid schedule.

How does Pathrise advocate for remote work?  

We help job-seekers land their dream job, which includes finding their dream work environment. More often than not, a fellow’s dream work environment is remote. Not only do we show fellows the best places to source remote opportunities, but we also support fellows in contract negotiation to help them get the best schedule possible.
In our own company, we encourage teammates to work remotely and set their own schedules. We understand that our team members work best when they’re working on a timetable that best fits their unique life situation, which likely includes activities outside of work. Flexibility keeps our team motivated, who then keep our fellows motivated.

How has being remote impacted the success of your company? 

Being remote has allowed us to work with fellows all over the globe, helping so many more professionals who we simply couldn’t have reached with an in-person program. Our remote schedule not only gives our teammates flexibility, but helps our fellows learn at their own pace as well, making our program accessible to people with full-time commitments like university or work.
Besides fostering a more flexible dynamic environment, being remote has allowed us to quickly scale and adapt to challenges at lightning fast speeds. 

How has being remote influenced Pathrise's organizational structure?

While Pathrise’s growth has exploded in the last few years, our core structure has remained close knit. Sure, we’ve onboarded dozens of new mentors, engineers, and analysts to support our influx of new fellows. But our original founders still hold the reins to keep their vision alive. While we have more teams and contractors, they integrate into our existing structure and answer to the same founding execs.

How has 2020 impacted your business?

Although 2020 was certainly a challenging year, it totally transformed the job market. Possibly for the better. Not only has remote work become standard, but the pandemic kicked off a “great resignation”--Workers are quitting their jobs at record numbers as employees rethink their relationship to employers. In fact, 79% of employees think they can make more money by switching jobs, while 3 out of 4 workers are considering quitting within this year. 
As employers struggle to find talent, job-seekers have more power in salary negotiation and more value on the job market. That means higher pay and more perks, even with inflation and a pandemic. But most importantly, it means employers will likely have to give more thought to creating a work environment and contract that makes employees want to stay. 
As a company that helps people land a job and negotiate a higher salary, we’re thrilled that the US seems to be entering a more labor-friendly job market. While 2022 may be an intimidating time to find a job, in many ways it’s the best time in history to be a job seeker. We’ve received a flood of new applications from fellows who are not only more educated about employer-employee relationships, but also more willing to advocate themselves than past generations. Of course nerves are high. But that’s to be expected in times like these.
We’re so proud of how our team and fellows fought through 2020. Being remote insulated us from most of the shut-downs, allowing us to keep supporting fellows through an initially terrifying job market. We like to think that both our team and fellows are now stronger for it. If they can find a job in a global pandemic, they can find a job anywhere.

What cultural practices set you apart as a company?

We empower our employees to set their own schedules and goals. Our flexible culture makes us dynamic and energetic–everything at Pathrise feels momentous. Everyone is going places, especially our fellows. Although much of our team comes from the bay area, being remote gives us an extremely diverse team with an incredibly wide variety of perspectives. We have mentors from all different industries and backgrounds, and our fellows are equally diverse. 

How do you address common remote challenges for your employees? 

Keeping everyone on the same page with clear communication and goals is so important. We have weekly meetings every Friday where we discuss our weekly goals and achievements. We also have a bustling Slack where teammates can catch up on any announcements or pivots they missed. In addition to having their own Slack, each team has its own weekly meetings as well. But while meetings are high-energy, they’re sparing and to the point. We don’t do meetings that could be emails.

What’s your tool stack?

Our tool stack seems endless. We could probably rave on and on about our favorite analytics and metrics until the sun burns out. But our primary communication tools are Slack and Google Drive. We love Salesforce for tracking and winning opportunities as well. But probably our favorite is our own unique scheduling platform–Fellows schedule meetings and attend workshops directly on a simple platform designed for their career growth. Our teammates can also post information, feedback, and even schedule meetings on the platform. The simple scrolling calendar layout streamlines scheduling and makes catching up on tasks a breeze.

How do your employees measure the impact of their work? 

We’re committed to letting our team set their own schedule and benchmarks. Although we make sure every team has clear KPIs and an even clearer sense of our vision, we leave the specifics up to them. Of course we closely monitor metrics and results on our end. But we don’t want to smother any teammate or team. In addition to our data-driven approach, third-party agencies and consultants also help us measure the impact of our teams’ work.

Do you believe remote work is here to stay? 

Yes yes yes! Remote work is not just here to stay; it’s already revolutionized how companies engage with employees and customers. The benefits of remote work seem endless for all parties. Companies get access to a wider pool of applicants. Employees get more freedom and flexibility. 
Remote work also allows for fast pivots and a more dynamic approach to growth. Company culture doesn’t compete with remote work. Instead, they both evolve together as remote work fosters its own employee culture. We found that remote work makes company culture more dynamic and momentous than ever before.

What advice do you have for companies who want to go either fully remote or hybrid?  

Adapt or die. Remote work is no longer a novelty, it’s ofen standard. Regardless of your company’s familiarity with remote work, talent may demand it. If you want to hire the best teammates and scale as fast as competitors, remote work is essential, at least in some form. We also encourage companies going through this transition to clearly outline all your missions, values, and goals as clearly as possible. We personally opt for a manifesto page. This helps preserve our identity through structural change. 
Remote work’s rise doesn’t mean companies have to completely restructure their operations or values. But it does mean they should be flexible to the wishes of your team and prospective talent. Of course adapting to remote work can feel scary. But progress always seems scary at first. The labor market marches forward regardless of comfort or familiarity. Better to join in than get left behind! 
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Connect with Pathrise:
Apply Today at pathrise.com/wwr
Pathrise Social Media: https://www.Pathrise.com/ 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Pathriseio/ 
Twitter: https://twitter.com/Pathriseio  
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/JoinPathrise

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