Over the years, Gapstars, a Netherlands-based B2B service provider, has been consistently recognized as a Great Place to Work under several categories. The latest of these is that Gapstars is now among the Top 100 Workplaces in Asia as recognized by Great Place to Work® 2022. Previously, the company has been listed among the Top 10 IT/ITes Workplaces in Sri Lanka, Top 10 Places to Work for Millennials, and Top 50 Workplaces in Sri Lanka, and awarded as a Great Place to Work for the fifth consecutive year in 2022. These prestigious series of awards, earned annually, are a testament to the continuous efforts by Gapstars to build an inclusive employee-first culture where its employees are empowered with opportunities for growth while having a healthy work/life balance.
Inside one of Asia’s Top Workplaces
A Great Place To Work doesn’t happen overnight. Despite its team growing rapidly in size, the company has always prioritized diversity and inclusion by offering equal opportunities to all. As such, it has made consistent efforts to empower women in the local IT industry. Today, approximately 30% of the Gapstars workforce comprises women working across various sectors such as Client Tech, Marketing, Sales, Human Resources, and Recruitment.
From its earliest days, Gapstars has prioritized maintaining a healthy corporate culture. As a result, many of its employees describe it as an inclusive workplace. One that celebrates their differences and provides opportunities for growth to all. In 2021, Gapstars was recognized as one of the Best Workplaces for Millennials in Sri Lanka. The award was a clear indicator that its culture is markedly different from anything seen before – one that understands and embraces millennials’ affinity with the digital world and their need for an open, flexible and honest approach to work.
Understanding the unique Gapstars Culture
At its core, the Gapstars culture is defined by celebrating hard work while maintaining balance. Hard work is consistently recognized and celebrated while supporting team members physically and emotionally. From a physical standpoint, gym memberships come with being part of the Gapstars team. The company also has an in-house counselor to guide team members in times of emotional stress.
Team spirit is also integral to life at Gapstars, with several company events held throughout the year. These range from its annual cricket tournament to its yearly weekend getaway and the famous Scale-Up Party. While the pandemic may have forced many of these events to be held virtually, they continue to be a defining part of the Gapstars culture.
The last few months have also seen Gapstars adapt to the challenges of the national crisis. The company was among the early adopters of Euro-pegged salaries, providing much-needed financial stability in an increasingly uncertain economy. It also began shuttle services to help employees get to the office during fuel shortages. The latest of these initiatives is subsidized solar inverters to give employees a leg up in overcoming issues due to power cuts.
Growth and development: Two sides of the same coin
Professional development also forms the backbone of the Gapstars ethos. Its foundation is built atop several initiatives toward its employees’ personal and professional development. Among these has been facilitating visits of its Sri Lankan team members to its Amsterdam HQ, allowing them to better engage with clients and gain a deeper understanding of their business. Alongside this, Gapstars also has a mentoring program in place, where the seniors of the team guide junior members.
The latest of these career development efforts by the company is the Gapstars Academy. This initiative aims to create customized programs for employees to develop their technical, professional, and soft skills. So far this year, the program has engaged in upskilling employees through a Toastmasters Speechcraft program alongside specialized sessions covering personal branding, personal finance, and business communication. Meanwhile, on the technical side, Gapstars supports its engineers in developing their skills by helping them obtain certifications and facilitating forums with experts.
Continuous efforts toward building a Great Place to Work
Building a positive, inclusive workplace culture that stands among the Top 100 workplaces in Asia is no easy feat, especially from the ground up. Still, it is something the team at Gapstars, led by its Co-Founder & CEO – Hugo Hemmen, has managed to do. Even after, it has sustained through unprecedented times for the Sri Lankan workforce. Moving forward, Gapstars is committed to continuously championing a culture driven by belonging, camaraderie, and empathy through their progressive human resources practices and a strong focus on providing equal opportunities for all their members.