Our Culture

At Engineering IT, we recognize that our culture is created and maintained by our team. We have spent time working to understand our current culture and to dream about how we want our culture to mature to be more inclusive, welcoming, and adaptive. We also recognize our best intentions are useless without actions and continual growth. Every member of our team plays a role in creating our culture and holding each other accountable to our commitments. We work hard together and celebrate together when we realize accomplishments.

Below are the values and personal qualities that best exemplify our culture, especially on our best days, and what guide our decisions for service operations, hiring and promotions, and our customer service efforts.

Organizational Values

These values represent how we work to achieve our Four Ideals.

In keeping with our Four Ideals, Engineering IT most highly values impact toward the larger mission of The Grainger College of Engineering.  We respond swiftly with creative, durable solutions that advance the academic mission and build on our relationships.  Knowing that in our line of work recovery is often less costly than falling behind, we lean toward action and accept calculated risks rather than get entrapped by endless meetings or low-value gatekeeping.  Knowing too that the environment changes rapidly, we will stay the course and persevere through inevitable roadblocks and distractions. 

While a few matters require privacy, we believe it is better to share information freely than to allow others their assumptions and speculation.  Engineering IT documents and shares openly all aspects of its operations, funding, decision-making, etc with our staff, customers, and peers even when it forces us to answer uncomfortable questions or admit our mistakes.  We consistently err on the side of over-sharing rather than keeping secrets or letting things go unstated.  In return we ask for and value clear, well-intended feedback from those same staff, customers, and peers so that we can improve both individually and as an organization.

To retain our agility, creativity, and energy, we strongly value results over process.  Rather than accrete more rules and processes, we instead empower individuals’ judgment.  We hire the most capable people and communicate with clarity and transparency to ensure they have the skill and context necessary to act without requiring extensive structures to organize and monitor their actions. In return we rely on our team members to consistently act in the best interests of The College, investing effort to understand that broader context and act according to our Ideals on their own initiative.  

Personal Qualities

Our organizational values are best maintained and enjoyed by individuals who embody the following qualities:

In keeping with our values of transparency and freedom, it is imperative that our employees not only demonstrate outstanding job performance, but also a deeply held sense of honesty and integrity.  Freedom requires responsibility.  We hire, retain, and promote only those who can bear a high degree of trust: those who do what they say, own their mistakes, and who do the right thing even when no-one is watching.

As most work is now too complex to be effectively completed individually, the ability to work with others and to work towards a common goal is more important than ever.  Particularly when combined with honesty and integrity, this quality tempers determination and self-assurance.  We hire, retain, and promote only those who can place organizational and team goals above their personal ambitions or convenience.  We seek out and reward those who help uplift their teammates and avoid those who tend to promote competition.

As a trusted academic partner to The Grainger College of Engineering, we exist only to the extent that we enable the teaching and research that is our client’s mission.  As such we value a strong commitment to customers and a reflex to consider customer impact first when making decisions.  Engineering IT staff should strive to make customers’ jobs easier and more impactful, even if we as IT practitioners must bear the initial burden of producing the best outcome.  We hire, retain, and promote only those who value customer relationships, and will work to understand customer needs and fulfill those needs by calling on any resources available.

As an organization we arm individuals with transparent access to information and significant autonomy in their jobs so that they can respond quickly and confidently. Indeed, to operate successfully in a rapidly changing environment with many independent stakeholders, staff must constantly use their own judgment to respond to challenges in alignment with our Ideals.  We hire, retain, and promote only those who are comfortable managing ambiguity, exercise independent decision making, and maintain composure under pressure.

An organization focused on teaching and research is by its nature continuously changing and adapting, as is the Information Technology field in which we practice.  Therefore those who work here must be willing and engaged in constantly learning and adapting.  We hire, retain, and promote only those who demonstrate native curiosity, are receptive to feedback, and are ready to explore new technologies and methods of working.