Trust Works

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Katrina Yuen, FMYI’s Director of HR, explains our commitment to workplace flexibility during her speech about FMYI’s trusting culture at the When Work Works Awards Ceremony in Portland, Oregon, on June 6th, 2016:

FMYI is a collaboration software company headquartered in North Portland. We were founded 12 years ago and hired our first employee a year later. We had a paid time off policy that was a little better than usual but nothing out of the ordinary. We wanted to do right by our employees. We wanted to set policies that we would want working somewhere else. We wanted to treat people the way we would want to be treated. So we just kept going on our way. 

We implemented a generous maternity plan even though as a small company we weren’t regulated by any of the FMLA laws. And then we started to have people ask us questions like, “Can I follow my husband who has to move to another state?” “My girlfriend wants to finish her schooling in Ashland.” And we said, yes! Why not? 

We have created this software product so that people can work efficiently and productively from all over the place. Yes! We can do this! So we just evolved to becoming a flexible company without labeling ourselves as such quite yet. And it just kept going. 

Our family at FMYI started to grow families of their own. Our founder brought his little daughter to the office and let her sit in a little swing for about 4 months. You know what? It worked.

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Fast forward to 2011, when we were introduced to Family Forward Oregon and they said, “Why don’t you apply for this award? Are you a flexible company?” We said, “Sure. What’s it called? The Alfred P. Sloan…very long name award.” 

And guess what? We won. 

And then we went to this awards ceremony, similar to what it is today and we heard from a woman named Renee Spears from Rose City Mortgage. She came up and spoke about an unlimited time off policy and we thought, “Huh. We can do that too. Why don’t we do that too?” As Andrea mentioned, we kept winning. Thank you! And we learned from the other recipients about cool things they were doing. 

We were inspired by your movement and by all of you and we became an organization for workplace flexibility. Not just for families but for yourselves. We have single employees who need time off because they’re sick, have pets, need to travel. 

Our unlimited time off policy has driven our culture now of trust. So much of our work revolves around trusting each other. We trust our employees are going to get the job done for FMYI. We want to pay you! So we need you to work hard for us but we trust that they’re going to take the time that they need to care for themselves, sick kids, to coach their kids at baseball, to take care of their parents, to take care of their dogs! We have a lot of dog owners at the moment. 

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There’s so much trust and communication. Like I said, we use our tool quite a lot. We have a lot of employees who work remotely and we found that they were the best employees and we need to retain them and we’re going to make it work. It’s still working but it’s a work in progress. We’re not done. We’re still trying to figure out what the next thing is. And we hope that you all and other companies will join us in being flexible, trust your employees, and be leaders in this movement. Thank you.

Keep on rolling

A personalized hand crafted gift from Seth to Justin commemorating 12+ years of FMYI! What a great creation incorporating our famous Kronan bike in the office with the FMYI and Grouptrail logos. Just in time for the Bikemore Challenge. Thanks Seth - onward and upward!

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FMYI’s 12th birthday!

It’s a big milestone for us today - we’re celebrating our 12th birthday! FMYI was founded on January 28, 2004. From day one, FMYI has focused on collaboration powered by human energy. Our platform was created as a more friendly way for teams to manage projects, track contacts, and share resources. I’m proud to say our team has stayed to true to this commitment, working hard to delight our customers, and is taking our products to new heights this year. Thank you everyone for helping us to reach this big milestone, and for leading us into our teenage years =) Looking forward to celebrating with you!

At the start in 2004!

At the start in 2004!

Arciform experiences more accurate project outcomes using the FMYI system

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We love Arciform and Versatile Wood Products! They’re making a difference with their amazing design, restoration, remodeling, and product projects, while having a fun work culture. And they’re FMYI customers. Recently, they shared with us why they use our collaborative database tracking system:

Describe the initial challenges you were solving.

The organization was using Outlook as its contact database. It had no formal customer relationship management system and no project management support software or system. We needed a flexible, organized, web-based transparent way to track information about a large volume of prospects and projects all the way from initial phone call to completed/delivered project.

Why was FMYI the solution you chose?

The simplicity of the user interface was appealing (many of our users work with their hands and are more comfortable with a simple interface). We liked that the solution was cloud based (so folks on the jobsite/on the road could make use of it) and scalable (we’ve experienced 50% annual revenue growth in the last 2 years). We also liked how customizeable it is. Many of the other options are built based on business assumptions that don’t fit custom manufacture. 

What benefits are you now seeing from implementing FMYI?

Everyone has real time updates on the status of every project in the queue. This has led to more accurate project completion estimates, as well as more accurate project outcomes. We have also begun using it as a searchable database of comparable projects for help with ballpark estimating on future projects. But most importantly, we use the system every day to keep projects moving forward on pace by setting routine tasks and creating a feedback loop to be sure that key details don’t get dropped and project lessons can be applied system wide. 

What would you tell another custom manufacturer about why this is the ideal tool?

Provides unprecedented transparency across all the different phases of production — the sales team member can see in real time as it moves through the appropriate production phases and balls don’t get dropped because it sets and maintains accountability for successful completion of each step in the production process from development of specifications through final billing and delivery. The interface doesn’t require extensive training to begin using, which is important when you have some users who may only check/use the system a couple of times a week, but it has the depth and flexibility to manage complex projects.

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FMYI VP of Marketing and Sales Seth Tayler with members of the Arciform and Versatile Wood Products team. Contact us to learn more about how to better track what’s important to you and your team!

Testimonial

I use FMYI avidly. It’s my calendar and a great way to communicate with my team. They know when I’m busy by checking my calendar, and can easily set appointments around it if they need my help. It is also my follow up tool for businesses that I have to work on over a period of time.
— Kendall Rohde, Special Projects Coordinator in Austin, Texas

Why you need to kick your spreadsheet to the curb

So you’re tracking your day to day operations by using a spreadsheet. But you have the nagging feeling there’s a better way that’ll save you time and take things to the next level with achieving goals. We’ve got your back. Here’s the top ten reasons how moving from a spreadsheet to a system will help improve your tracking:

1. Retain information over time

  • Spreadsheet: When tracking notes over time, you either overwrite history or make the spreadsheet wide and unmanageable to capture the details. 
  • System: Keep a history of all interactions, easily scaling as you add information over time, and still be able to generate a spreadsheet on demand.

2. Provide accountability

  • Spreadsheet: Once details are added, you don’t know who did what and when.
  • System: Create great documentation with time and date stamped notes show who did what.

3. Send communication

  • Spreadsheet: No emails are sent from a spreadsheet and the only way to communicate is send the whole document.
  • System: Alert the right people instantly and to take action as needed for specific items.

4. Control access

  • Spreadsheet: Everyone can see everything in a spreadsheet and it’s critical for each person to update the most recent version. 
  • System: Control who sees what, automatically assigned during import of accounts and updated individually or in bulk.

5. Keep data safe

  • Spreadsheet: The sort function can also destroy the data, which can be impossible to repair. The file can also become corrupt or lost.
  • System: Only select people can change the structure of the site and safeguards protect and prevent deletion of data.

6. Include all data types

  • Spreadsheet: Only simple data containing words and numbers are stored, requiring a separate task calendar, file sharing site, etc. 
  • System: Organize all notes, data, files, tasks and appointments for each record in one online place

7. Transfer easily

  • Spreadsheet: The limited amount of information in a spreadsheet makes is hard to hand off a record from one person to another.
  • System: A details trail in a system make transferring a simple, seamless process.

8. Set reminders

  • Spreadsheet: Spreadsheets won’t remind people to take actions, nor push appointments to a calendar. 
  • System: Set one time or repeating tasks to follow-up, and have appointments appear in Google, iPhone or Outlook calendars.

9. Create deliverables

  • Spreadsheet: The spreadsheet is your only asset.  
  • System: You can see on-screen dynamic reporting or create spreadsheets for different purposes, from high level to detailed results.

10. Scale your tracking

  • Spreadsheet: Built for data analysis and calculations at a specific time, managed by very few people.
  • System: Designed for managing initiatives with many people with powerful searching and generate various spreadsheets as needed.

Kick your spreadsheet to the curb and get an FMYI demo system created based on your existing spreadsheet!

-Seth

New marketing site

We’re excited to announce three new helpful resources about how FMYI is your best intranet solution - please help us spread the word:    New marketing site   featuring a short tour video, a homepage with the top reasons you’ll love FMYI, and an updated screenshot tour.    New help desk   with online resources to answer the questions you and your team have, a site administrator video, and a free help request form.    New solutions overview page   with links to landing pages on the variety of ways FMYI can help across sectors, industries, departments, cross functional initiatives, and more.

We’re excited to announce three new helpful resources about how FMYI is your best intranet solution - please help us spread the word:

New marketing site featuring a short tour video, a homepage with the top reasons you’ll love FMYI, and an updated screenshot tour.

New help desk with online resources to answer the questions you and your team have, a site administrator video, and a free help request form.

New solutions overview page with links to landing pages on the variety of ways FMYI can help across sectors, industries, departments, cross functional initiatives, and more.

Welcome to our new blog

FMYI has made the jump from Wordpress to Tumblr. Composing new posts is so much easier on Tumblr, and there’s a thriving community to connect with here. You can still read our past blog posts from 2004 through 2014. A few other changes we just launched:

If you’re feeling particularly nostalgic, browse our marketing sites throughout the years on the Internet Archives Wayback Machine. Here’s a homepage image from 2005 featuring some incredible Saburo’s sushi:

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