Operating under a policy of complete transparency from salary through to communication has enabled Buffer to attract and retain high quality talent.
- Founded in 2010, Buffer¹ is an application designed to manage social networks, by providing the means for a user to schedule posts to Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn.
- Buffer has approximately 60 employees, revenues of $7.9 million and more than 45,000 customers.
- Buffer’s mission is to build the simplest and most powerful social media tool possible, and to set the bar for great customer support. In addition, to these product and service goals, the company focuses on creating one of the most unique and fulfilling workplaces that exists, by rethinking traditional work practices.
- Buffer operates under a policy of complete openness about revenues and user numbers. They hold themselves accountable for putting out progress reports on customer support, and blog and business performance.
- Every internal email sent between any two people on a Buffer team has a certain list cc’ed that is accessible for everyone – for example, if two engineers email each other, they cc the engineers list.
- Buffer’s value metrics are available in real time to the public.
- Buffer’s approach to transparency has allowed them to attract high quality talent across the world. Buffer received 2,886 applications for job openings when salary transparency showed up on their blog, compared to 1,263 in the 30 days beforehand. Its cofounder and CEO, Joel Gascoigne observed that “we’ve never been able to find great people this quickly in the past.”
- Moreover, he also found that “the percentage of people who were a good culture fit was a lot higher.”
- Buffer started in 2010 as a simple way to schedule posts on Twitter. Since then, it has grown into a tool that two million customers have used to easily manage their social media presence.
- Buffer was quickly able to scale, through being agile and using data tools such as Hadoop, Redshift and Looker to easily analyse large amounts of data. Its highly motivated workforce has also contributed to its success.
- Buffer makes all product decisions based on transparent metrics. They launch features early and measure how they impact their metrics in order to decide which path to follow.
Sources: Buffer; WEF/Accenture Analysis
Buffer is one of more than 100 case studies identified as part of the World Economic Forum’s Digital Transformation of Industries initiative. An overview of the DTI program can be found here.