Box and the future of a digital workplace

Today, we're excited to share that we're taking further steps to enable a unified digital workplace, with increased work flexibility for Boxers.  As a part of that, we're announcing that all Boxers can work from anywhere until the end of the year, providing increased flexibility and peace of mind for our nearly 2,000 employees globally.

While the pandemic has thrust many businesses into operating remotely out of necessity, many organizations, including Box, are seeing the benefits of working digitally even when it's safe and healthy to go back to the office.  When we moved to being fully distributed, the first question we asked was, "How do we replicate the in-office experience while working virtually?"  Soon, we realized that was the wrong question to ask, and instead, we should be answering, "How does being in the cloud enable us to work differently?"  

All of a sudden, new potential for work emerges.  Now, teams are not limited by the people that they sit by to get the best ideas flowing; we can engage our entire workforce in our company-wide interactions virtually; we can easily reach and connect with more customers over video; and more voices, at all levels of the organization, can be heard in every meeting.  

By leveraging a modern tech stack with tools like Box, Zoom, Slack, Webex, Okta, O365, G Suite, and more, every team and every Boxer is enabled with best-of-breed technologies that let them do incredible work from anywhere.  This, combined with a workplace culture focused on collaboration, speed, and innovation, made it smooth to adapt to being fully virtual.  Going forward, as we enter a "new normal" -- whatever that may look like -- we will remain a digital-first organization.  

And this has caused us to consider new approaches in the way we work over time.  First, it will inevitably mean more flexible work, and allow more Boxers to be able to work from anywhere.  Before the pandemic hit, ~15% of Box's workforce already worked remotely, and this number will surely increase over time.  At the same time, we know the power of having office hubs where in-person communities, mentorship, networking, and creativity can happen.  We know different employees have a preference for different approaches.  That is why our future is a hybrid one, capturing the best of both worlds, with a digital workplace stitching the physical office and virtual office all together.

Our approach to building a digital workplace, which we will continue to iterate on over the coming months, includes:

  • Through Jan. 31, 2021, all Box employees can work from anywhere, even when offices reopen
  • Weekly all hands meetings will remain fully virtual going forward
  • Stipends to help Boxers (whether they're remote or not) improve their WFH setup
  • New roles that will be eligible for remote work, with improved virtual interviewing, hiring and onboarding
  • More flexible work patterns and hours for those that work near office hubs (when offices reopen)
  • Increased virtual community and ERG support for Box employees 
  • Additional virtual learning and development opportunities for all Boxers globally

There are still plenty of questions about what the future will look like, but we do know that having a digital-first workplace is the future.  And this isn't just the future for Silicon Valley tech companies. As businesses of all sizes move to working more digitally, every industry is going to be transformed. Healthcare professionals will be able to deliver telemedicine experiences and reach more patients efficiently.  Retailers can serve more customers globally.  Professional services firms can interact with more clients.  Life sciences firms can collaborate with more partners and researchers, no longer limited by geographical separation.  Financial institutions can securely transact without requiring in person contact. Everything changes.

When we started Box 15 years ago, the original idea was to build an incredibly simple and secure way for people to work from anywhere and collaborate with anyone.  Today, that vision is more important than ever.