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Remote Work at Eyeo GmbH

parent company

Eyeo GmbH
Visit Eyeo GmbH


Virtual Team
% Remote
Team Members
% of All Employees
*All figures approximate as of August 2016
Maren Böger, People Operations Manager
Interview with Remote.co

Eyeo GmbH is the company behind the world’s most popular open source browser extension, Adblock Plus. We have so far 100,000,000 active installations worldwide. Even though we run Adblock Plus, this does not mean that we hate all ads; however we believe that online advertising needs to become better and less intrusive. That’s why we’ve developed the Acceptable Ads initiative to encourage advertisers and publishers to produce less annoying ads which even Adblock Plus users will allow. By the end of this year we will hand the Acceptable Ads initiative over to an independent board in order to improve transparency and concentrate more on the development of our tool and the mobile solutions Adblock Browser for Android and Adblock Plus for iOS

Yes, actually we started with remote work in our early days and never regretted it.

We have an international product available to users all over the world so we believe it to be important to also have an international team of employees. Since not every colleague is able or wants to relocate to Germany, remote work is essential for us and our work.

HR-wise one of the biggest benefits is of course being able to access a much bigger hiring pool. From the employee’s perspective remote work offers flexibility which can add to the motivation and happiness of the colleagues.

We want to attract and hire the perfect candidates/employees for our team. In order to achieve this goal we cannot just hire on a local level.

Yes; there are some traits we look for in remotees that are even more important in remote employees. We are looking for people who can work independently as we are not micromanaging people.

Over Skype or BlueJeans. Whenever it’s possible, the last interview is an onsite meeting.

We always aim at painting the picture as realistic as possible. Usually, every candidate has to speak to one remote working colleague during the process.

We have the same amount of interviews. If we are hiring remotees and they are not able to come to Cologne/Berlin for an onsite meeting, we hire them without having met them in person. Other than that there is no difference in the hiring procedure.

Every tech candidate has to complete a questionnaire including a code challenge. For (some) other positions we ask for completion of a case study. However, we do not believe in personality tests.

We invite every new remotee to come to Cologne for the first week and up to a month for the onboarding. During that time we’ll have a bunch of different trainings in order for the new team member to learn as much as possible about the company. If the new colleague is not able to come to Cologne then s/he will have to join the trainings online.

No. We have an absence management tool so that we can manage every kind of leave request, such as vacation, parental leave, etc.

Minimum twice a year for summer and Christmas Event

When looking at developers the code quality is essential. We focus on output, not on working hours.

Agree on communication channels and style of communication.

Keeping everyone happy and connected, not forgetting people.

First of all, we invite new colleagues to our headquarters in Cologne for the onboarding process. Then we have weekly team meetings which the colleagues working remotely can join via Bluejeans. Also, we invite everyone to the office twice a year for our summer and Christmas events. In addition to that, we encourage employees to attend conferences and meet with their colleagues but also to network with their peers. The remotees can also keep track of what is going on by visiting our internal forum, where all our departments update the team regularly.

They can choose their own hardware from the company or can bring their own device.

26 vacation days plus Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve; unpaid leave is possible.

Yes, absolutely, but this includes a lot of work. You have to agree on values and hire for attitude, not (only) for skills. An in-depth onboarding and good communication tools will support a healthy company culture.

Make sure that everyone feels they belong to the company. Ensure that every employee has what he or she needs to feel comfortable at work (allowance for good quality office furniture, free choice of hardware, covering costs for office visits etc.)

I would advise them to set up good communication tools and implement rules that keep everyone involved. Another important point is that I believe for remote work to work well a flexible company culture adds to the benefits.

Setting up and evolving communication mechanisms that work for both remote workers and people who prefer to work in an office with their colleagues.

IRC, code reviews, BlueJeans, Discourse. We have a video conference set up in every meeting room and announce meetings upfront as well as make the meeting notes available for everyone afterwards.

The team is constantly growing, so communication changed. We need to make sure to stay as transparent as possible, for example by sharing meeting notes with the team. Also we try to build and sustain trust in our fellow employees.

Dedicated study under the roof (far from the family noise) with relevant books nearby, a decent monitor, keyboard, mouse and chair. Docking station for company laptop, personal desktop PC and a KVM switch.

Stick to relatively fixed hours. Communicate personal time (e.g. through the calendar).

Reinventing Organizations by Frederic Laloux

Hire for attitude, train for skills. And never be too inflexible in role descriptions. Felix: Software is not hard, people are hard.

Worst: On the sofa with my own kids nearby. Best: In my garden, when the weather is good.