by Brian Nordli
February 7, 2019

There's quite the distance between Matillion’s original offices near Manchester, England and its new office in Denver — 4,531 miles to be exact — but you wouldn’t know it from the way their offices interact.

The cloud data transformation company’s commitment to its employee-developed culture — coupled with all the video conferencing and messaging tools needed to shrink the world — creates a seamless experience between the two offices. We spoke with two team members in Denver and two in the United Kingdom about the company culture that unites them and how they work together.           

 

Matillion Kitchen
Photography By NICK COTE
Matillion Lounge
Photography By NICK COTE
Matillion Employees gathering area
Photography By NICK COTE

 

FOUNDED: 2011

EMPLOYEES: 95 (20 in Denver)

WHAT THEY DO: Matillion provides data transformation for cloud data warehouses to help companies better understand their customers and make decisions from their business' data. 

WHERE THEY DO IT: Offices in Denver, New York, Seattle and Manchester, England.

GROWING TOGETHER: To build culture in Denver, the team holds biweekly lunch-and-learns that give employees the opportunity to present their projects and hold several sports outings.

THE PERKS: In addition to covering 100 percent of health benefit premiums for employees — and 85 percent for their families — Matillion offers stock option plans for all permanent team members.

 

Matillion Office Logo
Photography BY NICK COTE
Dayna Matillion Portrait
Photo provided by Matillion

 

Dayna Shoemaker, Product Marketing Manager

Dayna works in Matillion’s U.K. office, where she oversees the company’s content development. She translates the value of Matillion’s product into terms customers can easily understand.   

BEYOND WORK: Dayna leads a cooking team that creates three-course meals from food that would otherwise be wasted for those who are experiencing loneliness or mental health challenges.

 

How are employees empowered to help shape the office culture?

When I started, our culture and values weren’t written down but implicitly understood by existing staff and passed down to new hires. As we expanded globally, this model was not sustainable. In response, Matillion set up staff focus groups, hosted company-wide town hall meetings, and held employee-led presentations to define, refine and agree on our values. Our culture wasn’t just a product of an executive board member directive but instead a collaborative consensus across the organization.

 

How do you ensure team members in other offices have a similar experience as those in the U.K.?

Having traveled to nearly all our U.S. locations, I’ve noticed that there’s a similarity across the offices that make location unnoticeable. Working within geographically-dispersed teams is no different from remote work. Face-to-face meetings are swapped out with video conferencing, while text messaging, Slack and calls serve the same function as a desk catch-up.

Technology enables us to work seamlessly and create a shared work experience. New team members on the marketing team also have the opportunity to visit our U.K. offices to meet their teammates and gather knowledge.

 

Having traveled to nearly all our U.S. locations, I’ve noticed that there’s a similarity across the offices that make location unnoticeable.”

 

How do you translate Matillion’s values to team members in the U.S.?  

While we’re an international company and team, we all hold the same values. No single entity of the team has to “translate” the values to other team members. Because Matillion has maintained a community-based, startup feel, we’ve been able to create values that are relevant to all teams, across all locations. We’ve incorporated these into our recruitment process to ensure new hires demonstrate that same ethos.

 

Nick at work
Photography By NICK COTE
Nick Tierney Portrait
Photography BY NICK COTE

 

Nick Tierney, Sales Director, West

Nick came to Matillion’s Denver office by way of its New York branch. He manages a team of salespeople selling Matillion’s cloud-based data service to the Western U.S.

BEYOND WORK: Nick loves skiing, which makes his move to the skiing-utopia of Denver even sweeter.  

 

What opportunities are there for growth in the Denver office?

Denver is our largest U.S. office and will continue to grow across all teams. New hires have the opportunity to immediately make an impact and progress in their careers. When I joined, I was able to immediately impact both customer acquisition and partner business development. After 18 months, I was promoted to director and given the opportunity to lead a team and open the Denver office.

 

What challenges did you experience developing a culture in Denver?

Starting an office in Denver presented a few challenges, namely that we were bringing in a whole new team of people. We needed to lead by example, so our director of solution architecture came from the U.K. to help for three months.

 

New hires have the opportunity to immediately make an impact and progress in their careers.” 

 

What is a memorable moment where your team in Denver and members in the U.K. office collaborated?

What connects us with the U.K. office is our customer-focus value — this spans across all teams. When one of my customers in Seattle experienced problems with a tool, our CTO and connectors team lead got on a plane and spent several days with me on-site with the customer to ensure their success. It demonstrated our company-wide commitment to customers, regardless of where the offices are located.

 

Matillion Team Putting
Photography By NICK COTE
Sam Perrin portrait
Photo provided by Matillion

 

Sam Perrin, Team Lead, Software Engineering

Sam joined Matillion two years ago as a test engineer and has since become a lead engineer. Based in Manchester, he oversees a team of engineers who design and develop features for Matillion’s cloud-based data analysis tools.

BEYOND WORK: Sam plays field hockey in the Men’s Hockey League, Premier League.

 

What opportunities are there for professional growth at Matillion?

I started as a test engineer at Matillion. While I loved working with automation and coding, my dream was to become a developer. I’m a self-taught programmer with no formal university qualification, so testing was my way in.

I developed an internal tool that allowed us to manage all of our testing and development instances using Docker across multiple cloud providers — it saved hundreds of hours a week. I was then given the opportunity to become a software engineer and was eventually promoted to lead software engineer. Matillion allowed me to achieve my dream.

 

What processes does your team use to collaborate with team members in Denver?

Our solution architects in Denver deal with difficult customer issues on a daily basis. When they require the aid of a developer based in England, they can start a new thread in our dedicated Slack #support channel. Any developer is then able to provide any help and support needed. If an issue requires more in-depth support from a developer, we’ll tackle it through a Zoom video call.

 

I was then given the opportunity to become a software engineer and was eventually promoted to lead software engineer. Matillion allowed me to achieve my dream.”

 

How do you overcome the distance when it comes to collaborating with team members in Denver?

Not being able to have a face-to-face interaction with someone can be tricky. However, we’re able to schedule a meeting with a colleague in Denver and, within seconds, join a video call where we can share data easily via a screen share.

 

Amanda at work
Photography by NICK COTE
Amanda Portrait
Photography By NICK COTE

 

Amanda Stamm, Sales Ops Analyst

Amanda works in Matillion’s Denver office, where she manages the operational tools, systems and materials across the sales team. Her goal is to improve the team’s efficiency and effectiveness.

BEYOND WORK: Amanda stretches her limits at the hot yoga studio six days a week. You don’t survive the sweltering 104-degree studio without some patience, discipline, positivity and zen, all traits that have helped her at work.  

 

What processes are in place to ensure new salespeople are successful?

I found the onboarding helpful. There are plenty of process documentation and training sessions scheduled to help you onboard. You’re also assigned a mentor to help you navigate and ramp quickly. Managers are always available for questions and happy to help.

 

What type of access does your team have to senior leadership in your company, especially with those based in the U.K.?

Our senior leaders are personable and helpful. I’ve been at other companies where they distance themselves from the rest of the staff — here, they are right next to you. My boss is located in the U.K., and I’m in Denver. You would think this could pose challenges, but it doesn’t.

 

I’ve been at other companies where [senior leaders] distance themselves from the rest of the staff — here, they are right next to you.”

 

What opportunities are there for the team in Denver to shape Matillion’s culture?

Matillion is a vibrant and fast-growing company. Everyone has a voice and can affect culture simply by being themselves. During meetings, I’ve noticed how often executives and managers ask for input. It makes Matillion an open and empowering place to work.

 

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