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In February 2020 Red Hat proudly announced that we had earned a place on Fortune’s list of the 100 Best Companies to Work For. At the time, achieving such a distinction seemed guaranteed to be one of the most memorable moments of the year. 2020 had other ideas, though. Now as we look back on a year that saw not only leadership changes, but also more than 16,000 Red Hatters around the globe working from home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are honored to once again have a spot on that list.
Red Hat is ranked No. 27 on Fortune’s 2021 list of the 100 Best Companies to Work For—moving up 21 spots—and No. 6 on their list of the Best Workplaces in Technology. We couldn’t be prouder of what we’ve all accomplished together in the last year!
Red Hat’s people are our competitive advantage, and it’s our open culture that enables them to be their authentic selves and do their best work, together. It’s a culture of openness built collaboratively by all Red Hatters, and each of our associates played a role in this achievement.
A culture of connectivity
Red Hatters have collaborated with one another remotely around the globe for years. We have many teams with people located in different cities, time zones, and countries. With offices in more than 40 countries and a third of all Red Hatters working remotely even before the pandemic, we are accustomed to working across boundaries. But for many Red Hatters, this year was different. It wasn't that they had to collaborate in new ways, it's that they were also now much more isolated from all of their co-workers.
Cut off from in-person meetings and impromptu conversations in office snack areas and hallways, how can Red Hatters forge the connections needed to collaborate effectively? How can an organization come together strategically when associates can’t come together physically?
Our approach to work was born in the open source communities that we support. By virtue of design, open source communities are made up of distributed contributors. In many open source projects, the developers may never meet each other in person. The most successful open source projects embrace characteristics of collaboration, community, inclusivity, adaptation, and transparency. These values lay the foundation for how Red Hat works.
But 2020 brought those challenges into stark relief, as every Red Hatter saw changes in their daily lives. It’s only through conscious efforts to support one another that we not only endured, but continued to grow throughout this year.
We’re here for one another
From the beginning, Red Hat’s core strategy around COVID-19 focused on putting the safety of our associates first while providing easy access to information and support. We’ve launched new programs and initiatives focused on supporting associate health and wellbeing. The consistent reassurance to associates has been: "You’re not alone. We’re here for one another." And we've modeled that mindset throughout our pandemic response.
Our leadership team has held itself accountable to associates, but this wasn’t limited to a top-down effort. Here, leadership is not about a role, but about a set of behaviors. In our open culture, every associate has the opportunity to be a leader.
Still growing, still unlocking potential
Navigating the difficulties of COVID-19 has not been easy, but Red Hat is proud that we have continued to grow in spite of these challenges. We’ve added more than 2,000 Red Hatters to our workforce and are continuing to ramp up hiring in the new year. Our drive in 2021 is to further invest in emerging markets and continue to unlock the possibilities of open hybrid cloud for our customers. To do that we plan to add even more talent to our workforce in 2021, including more than 900 technical roles.
Whether our associates are making a difference for our customers, helping to solve real-world problems, or developing the open hybrid cloud infrastructure that will shape the next decade of technology, it’s a very exciting time to wear a red fedora.
Better together, today and tomorrow
Throughout 2020, we’ve all heard the common refrain that "we’re in this together," but the things Red Hatters have accomplished show how powerful "together" can be. All the connection and collaboration that our culture has enabled—during a challenging time and as we emerge from it, focused on new challenges—are a clear example of the values and ideas that make Red Hat a truly great place to work.
About the author
Red Hat is the world’s leading provider of enterprise open source software solutions, using a community-powered approach to deliver reliable and high-performing Linux, hybrid cloud, container, and Kubernetes technologies.