Blackbaud’s Remote-First Workforce Approach Propels Company Culture and Success

Four Years into Remote Work, Blackbaud Sees Employee Satisfaction, Greater Access to Talent, and Increased Efficiency

Blackbaud, the leading provider of software for powering social impact, is marking four years of a remote-first workforce by sharing the success the company and its employees have seen. Blackbaud employees began working remotely at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, and the company made the official transition to a remote-first workforce in November 2021.

“We’ve continued refining and enhancing our remote-first approach to ensure our people thrive,” said Margaret “Maggie” Driscoll, chief people and culture officer, Blackbaud. “Businesses face many important, distinct factors in deciding whether to bring their employees back into the office or not. Today, we’re reflecting on the multitude of benefits we’ve seen that are translating to the wellbeing of our employees, our customers, our communities and our company.”

“Our team’s drive to innovate, stay agile and collaborate under this new standard enables us to remain focused on serving our clients and to overcome any challenge,” said Mike Gianoni, president, CEO and vice chairman of the board, Blackbaud. “We know how important our people and our communities are, and our remote-first model is fostering a culture where they can both thrive. In addition to increasing productivity, we’ve been able to become more connected, enhance our already strong culture, and access incredible talent.”

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Benefits Blackbaud is experiencing include:

  • Employee Engagement: 80% of employees say that working for a remote-first company and having the ability to volunteer and give back are important factors in why they joined, stayed or felt supported in their overall wellbeing.
  • Access to Global Talent: Between external hiring and internal mobility, Blackbaud has access to a broader pool of skilled talent, and employees can build their careers regardless of location.
    • In the last four years, applications have increased more than 50%. In any given month, over 300,000 individuals around the world follow Blackbaud’s jobs or sign up for mobile updates on the career site.
  • Gathering In-Person: Blackbaud brings teams together at its world headquarters in Charleston, S.C., and its international office in London. These locations host team-building events, annual planning sessions, customer meetings and give-back opportunities.
    • Regional connection gatherings were added in 2023 as half-day, in-person events in locations around the world, giving executives and employees a chance to connect on business updates, hold open Q&A, share a meal and volunteer together. Blackbaud has held events in locations including AustinBostonNew YorkLondonTorontoGlasgow, and San José, Costa Rica, with more locations to come in 2024.
  • Business Impact & Technology Advancement: With the right tools and platforms, employees collaborate in real-time, regardless of their physical location. From a business perspective, Blackbaud has not only sustained but improved operations.
    • Increased Productivity: Blackbaud employees have become more productive due to fewer workplace distractions and no commuting time. Product and engineering teams have improved consistency in delivery of new capabilities by more than 20%, and sales and support teams have improved both agent efficiency and customer satisfaction simultaneously.
    • Scaled Agile Framework: With this framework, Blackbaud is managing work across teams more effectively, helping to deliver innovative products and services faster, more predictably and with higher quality.
    • Resilience: During unexpected disruptions, such as inclement weather or health events like Covid-19, Blackbaud’s remote-first infrastructure ensures business continuity.
  • Recognition: Since making the transition to a remote-first approach, Blackbaud has been recognized as one of the Best Companies for Remote Work by Quartz and has been a repeat honoree on Forbes’ list of America’s Best Midsize Employers and Newsweek’s list of America’s Most Responsible Companies. Blackbaud’s products have been recognized by review sites TrustRadius and G2, and the company earned a BIG Innovation award for its AI strategy and achievements. Blackbaud’s teams have also earned honors for Corporate Governance Team of the Year, Best ESG Reporting, Ethics in Sales, and Customer Service Contact Center of the Year.

According to a survey by career service site FlexJobs, over 50% of employees prefer to work remote full-time. And according to LinkedIn, 46% of all job applications in December 2023 went to remote positions, even though only 10% of all job openings on LinkedIn in December 2023 were fully remote.

“What we see across the industry is that people are telling us they want flexibility, and they prefer remote work,” Driscoll said. “At Blackbaud, we find tremendous value in listening to and learning from our people and prioritizing trust between our leadership and our employees. This approach is paying dividends, thanks to our committed, passionate people who have closely collaborated with us to make this a success. We’re committed to remaining remote-first.”

Sadath JeanPierre, a senior sales manager at Blackbaud, shared his experience as a remote-first employee: “As I head into my eighth year at Blackbaud, I’ve been able to enjoy living in Charleston, S.C., the Bay Area in California, and now Charlotte, N.C. Blackbaud has afforded me the opportunity to connect with amazing K-12 schools and nonprofit customers throughout that time. Working remotely allows me to balance my family and work life in ways that create success for both. I feel like I have more access to everyone at the company in this remote environment, and we’ve still been able to connect in-person through regional events!”

Leah Niblett, a customer renewals manager at Blackbaud, added: “I am originally from Canada, though when I started at Blackbaud in 2011, I was in Charleston, S.C. In 2023, my partner and I decided to move back to Toronto to be closer to my family. Blackbaud’s remote-first strategy made the transition easy. Moving is always stressful, but I have an incredible team, and with all of our tools for collaboration, the only thing that changed was my Microsoft Teams background! It’s such a benefit to be able to maintain my role and team and get to come back to my hometown.”

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