FARFETCH + Humu: How to define a flex work strategy that actually works

Caroline Dillon

FARFETCH is the leading global platform for the luxury fashion industry. Its Marketplace connects customers in over 190 countries and territories with 1,400+ of the world’s best brands and boutiques. 

Given FARFETCH’s focus on connecting people with great experiences, the company also strives to deliver world-class employee experiences to its global workforce of more than 7,000 employees. FARFETCH has partnered with Humu since 2017 to drive its commitment to cultural excellence forward. 

Nudges in action

At FARFETCH, Humu’s solution is mapped to align nudges to the company’s six core values, supporting outcomes related to employee happiness, retention, and inclusion. Humu also runs company-wide diagnostics to enable FARFETCH’s leadership team to regularly gauge employee sentiment in each of these areas. Findings from Humu are then used to define workplace strategies and initiatives. 

One example is FARFETCH’s ongoing response to flex work throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. While transitioning to a newly ultra-distributed global workforce, FARFETCH also experienced significant headcount growth. Despite many moving pieces, leadership was committed to building a flex work program that maximized employee wellbeing, was intentional about inclusion, and kept a pulse on employee sentiment. They turned to Humu to help make it happen.

Flex work strategy

Research shows that employees with a strong sense of happiness and inclusion perform better—in fact, their NPS scores are 17% higher than those with low happiness and inclusion scores.

In looking to define its flex work strategy, FARFETCH partnered with Humu’s People Science team to perform a custom analysis. The analysis was designed to determine the optimal number of in-office days per week to support happiness and inclusion. It also measured sentiment around flexible work and surfaced the factors most likely to bring people together in-office.

Humu’s analysis helped FARFETCH determine its strategy to provide choices for employees, while still leveraging data to recommend two in-office days per week. It also helped its People Team identify key resources employees needed to feel supported under the new recommendations. Additionally, the results made clear that coming into the office would need to be clearly purposeful to the employee. Now, a cornerstone of the strategy anchors on creating magical moments that celebrate FARFETCH’s unique culture and allow everyone to participate, drawing more people into the office more frequently.

By combining the data-backed insights from Humu with direct employee feedback FARFETCH was able to successfully roll out flex work recommendations where a staggering 84% of employees say they feel valued, heard, and empowered to succeed. The team is continuing to measure sentiment around these recommendations and uses Humu to zoom in and learn from pockets of the organization thriving under them and those that need greater support. 

“One thing I really appreciate about Humu is that their team gives us three things to celebrate and three things to work on. I love the bias towards action. It’s easy to get caught up in the details of the data vs. cutting to action on things that actually matter.” - Kim Wylie, Director of People Development & Change

The manager effect

Action-taking is baked into the culture at FARFETCH at every level. “Employees see our People Team taking action based on what they’re saying—which makes them much more likely to share honest feedback” Kim said.

FARFETCH knows its managers are instrumental to inspiring action, too. The People Team regularly runs enablement sessions with managers that remind and inspire them to keep acting on the Focus Areas Humu surfaces to improve company outcomes over time. Manager action-taking at FARFETCH has led to a 9% increase in happiness scores and a 10% more positive sentiment on retention

Want to help employees act on your mission-critical goals? Humu can help. Get in touch today.