Twilio: Business communications lead remotely

Almost all companies in 2020 are toying with the idea of remote work for a significant time or forever.To help on that journey, we present the top 10 global companies who have aced remote work. To learn more about:

  1. What is remote work?
  2. Twimbit’s e-tact framework
  3. Our selection criteria

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#9


Twimbit’s top 10 global companies to ace remote work
Company: Twilio
Industry: Internet
2500 employees | 100% Remote + Gig | 5 Million Gig workers

Ethos

Twilio’s mission is to empower the future of business communicationS. It democratizes communication channels such as, voice, text, chat, video, and email. Virtualizing the world’s communications infrastructure through APIs that are simple enough for developers, yet robust enough to power the world’s most demanding applications.

To make communications a part of every software developer’s toolkit, Twilio enables innovators across every industry — from emerging leaders to the world’s largest organizations — to reinvent how companies engage with their customers.

Talent Strategy

Apart from 2500 employees, Twilio has a developer community comprising 5 million developers.

  1. Before COVID’19 only 10% of official employees were remote
  2. The developer community has always been entirely remote.

How did Twilio tackle the sudden change of converting the whole company remote?

Hiring process
  1. The hiring team reviews applications
    • Recruiter, hiring manager and the interview team
  2. The recruiter conducts a primary phone screen
  3. The hiring manager/engineer conducts an additional phone screen focused on technical skills and knowledge
  4. The recruiter organises an in-person interview loop with 3-5 interviewers including
    • Various individuals within the department

Getting the best out of their people

  1. Championship Program:
    • A champion is defined as someone who inspire others by doing their thing with confidence.
    • Merge diverse branches of people, educate new developers, and build new projects that push communications forward.
    • Twilio champions build better communities knowing that every developer’s environment is different.
    • These champions are recognized by featuring on Twilio’s official site.
  2. Twilioquest program:
    • An interactive game to learn about Twilio
    • Gamified learning – rewards are driven by learning concepts and features of Twilio
  3. Accept that targets/deadlines can change during uncertain times
  4. Do not push employees into video call fatigue. Some phone calls are ok.
  5. Twilio uses a system they call BPMs- Big Picture, Priorities, Measures.
    • To prioritize
    • Make better decisions
  6. Encourage massive company-wide happy hours to maintain the social connect
  7. Sustain a dedicated place for employees to find important information.
    • A Google Doc inside the company for conveying information
    • Daily changes are made at a specific time in a change log

TranscribeMe and Lionbridge are two other companies who successfully maintains a big crowd. Check out how they are different from Twilio.

Customer Centricity

Twilio’s products are technical products/services like APIs and programmable SMS, voice, text etc. And their customers are prone to have doubts during all the stages of deployment.

Four ways Twilio tackles this:

  1. Maintaining a huge list of customer stories with details of deployment
    • A well maintained and organized page with detailed description of deployment of Twilio products/services.
    • The customer stories are segregated according to their respective industries like healthcare, financial services, technology, on-demand services, retail and real estate.
  2. Hosting an interactive platform to learn Twilio
    • There is an interactive platform visualized as a gaming platform to learn coding and several associated skills.
    • Including the developer community, customers can also make use of this platform to learn about Twilio and its features.
  3. Maintaining documentation of all products
    • Twilio maintains full end point documentation of all their products
    • It contains the overview, best practices, demos and other technical aspects of the respective APIs or programmable services.
  4. Nourishing a blog with tutorials and hacks
    • Twilio maintains a blog to share the experiences of its 5 million developer community members.
    • It not only boosts the morale of community but also helps share knowledge with customers of Twilio.

3 ways Twilio boosted customer centricity during Covid -19:

  1. A new program called Flex Boost
    • To aid contact centres
    • Free hours of service
    • Technical resources and operational guidance
  2. Twilio is partnering with Google Cloud to provide connectivity over PSTN or SIP
    • This partnership can deliver quick answers to common COVID questions.
  3. An API driven text-message-based COVID-19 tracker

M&A

  1. Twilio acquired SendGrid for $3Billion in 2019.
    1. Currently Twilio is offering plenty of solutions around voice, video and chat, but not email
    2. Email is an integral part to Twilio’s mission of powering business communication
    3. Acquisition of SendGrid can fill up this gap by building expertise in this area

“We believe this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to bring together the two leading developer-focused communications platforms to create the unquestioned platform of choice for all companies looking to transform their customer engagement”

Jeff Lawson, CEO of Twilio[1]

2. Twilio acquired Teravoz, a Brazilian company developing APIs for communication in 2019.

Teravoz focuses on creating a more seamless and automated customer experience to a company’s private branch exchange (PBX).

Tools

For collaboration tools Twilio is taking a lead from their developer communities. The following are the tools which are popular among the community.

  1. Hacker News is a social news website focusing on computer science and entrepreneurship
  2. Stack Overflow is a question and answer site for professional and enthusiast programmers
  3. Twitch is a video live streaming service operated by Twitch Interactive, a subsidiary of Amazon
  4. Zoom for video conferencing
  5. Google Doc for sharing important information inside the company

Awards and Recognition

2020

  1. Best Workplaces for Diversity, Fortune, 2020
  2. Best Workplaces in the Bay Area, Fortune, 2020

2019

  1. Best Places to Work in the Bay Area, The San Francisco Business Times and Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Journal
  2. Best Places to Work, Denver Business Journal
  3. Great Place to Work Certified, Great Place to Work Institute,

Curious to know about other top picks by Twimbit?

Appen | Automattic |Basecamp | HubSpot | Lionbridge | Magellan Health | Microsoft | TranscribeMe | VIPKid