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CruiseFlex: Our Approach to Flexible Work

The Cruise leadership team took some time to reflect on the past two years of working remotely and think through how the world has changed during the COVID-19 pandemic. A few key observations:

  • We have been able to successfully execute against our very ambitious objectives despite a limited number of Cruisers working from our offices

  • Some Cruisers are thriving in a fully remote environment; some prefer working in an office environment

  • The market for talent remains competitive, and a larger percentage of candidates are limiting their search to jobs with very flexible working arrangements

Cruise is already building the future of transportation to give individuals greater autonomy and freedom in how they move. Why not also extend that autonomy and freedom to the way we work?

We think we should, and our answer is CruiseFlex: a working policy for US-based Cruisers that lets you and your manager find what works best for you, whether it’s in-person, remote, or a hybrid of the two. Our belief is that companies that invest in flexibility will have access to larger pools of talent, have more diverse teams, and ultimately retain their key talent. If COVID-19 has taught us anything, it is that an office environment is not always best for everyone, so flexibility is the key to unlocking the joy of doing really great work and experiencing personal growth.

This will effectively be a continuation of the status quo at Cruise, but we acknowledge that making this permanent will require us to invest significant energy into building a working culture that is sustainable and effective in the long term.

Flex with Success

It’s important for us to set clear expectations and guidelines for Cruisers so we can help them determine how to be the most healthy, productive, and successful versions of themselves. We believe the following guiding principles will make CruiseFlex successful:

  • High Accountability - You will be empowered and trusted to deliver results, regardless of where or how you work. Cruise has very high expectations for performance, so it is our commitment to measure results objectively and not based on face-time or visibility. 

  • Valued Relationships - Strong relationships build trust and minimize conflict. You should prioritize building connections with team members and others across the company. Use in-person meetings, digital collaboration tools, or whatever is most effective. Hallway conversations may become less prevalent, but spontaneous conversations that generate new ideas will not.

  • Individual Choice - You can choose where you’d like to work unless your work requires you to be in a particular location. If you prefer working in our offices, we’ll support you. If you work best in your living room, that’s fine too. We trust you to make the right call and find the working style that optimizes for your health and productivity.

Thank you to the Cruisers who shared their stories of life during COVID-19, worked to help transition our IT and many other systems to support remote working, the CREW and other teams involved in adapting our workplaces, and everyone else who took steps to help the company succeed during the last two years. Also, a special thank you to those whose job responsibilities required them to work at a Cruise office and to endure social distancing, mask requirements, and all the other challenges thrown your way. We appreciate you. It has not been easy, but you have persevered and made Cruise stronger.

I hope you’ll join me in celebrating our increased flexibility and in looking forward to how CruiseFlex will help us accomplish our very important mission to benefit humanity by deploying driverless cars at scale!