WordPress.com is the biggest blogging platform around, and one of the most visited websites in the world. Yet the team that keeps it running is an intimate group of 224 Automatticians (thinking of joining our ranks? We’re always hiring). Among them are the Code Wranglers at work on our great features, the designers who make sure every pixel in your theme is in its right place, and the Happiness Engineers who work around the clock to solve any issue our users encounter.
Among the people working on WordPress.com, you’ll find marathon runners, home brewers, slam poets, and global nomads (to name a few) — as well as many, many bloggers. What do the people who make blogging possible blog about? Here’s a taste.
Technology and design
It comes as no surprise that people who work on innovative technology also think and write about it — constantly. When the latest version of the WordPress software was released recently, for example, several of those who contributed to it shared their perspective on the process, including designers Matt Thomas and Joen Asmussen.
Other Automatticians write on geek-friendly topics as varied as web safety and problem-solving; Design Engineer Mel Choyce spent some time earlier this year imagining blog themes for each house on Game of Thrones. Happiness Engineer Paul Ciano gives helpful advice on using technology on his blog, while Growth Engineer Ben Thompson uses his site to share his thoughts on the intersection of technology and culture, like in his recent post on social media.
How we work
One of the most unique aspects of working for Automattic is the company’s distributed model: employees work from wherever in the world they happen to be (or wanted to move to). The transition into this new type of environment, and its effects on how work is done, is something on which many Automatticians reflect.
“I live in the future. My work environment is contained within a computer screen, and I can put that screen anywhere I want.”
This observation by Code Wrangler Jason Munro sums up what many here feel.
The challenges and rewards of working in a non-traditional workplace is a common theme in Automatticians’ blogs. Mobile Wrangler Aaron Douglas shared his thoughts on coping with ADHD in his work, while Happiness Engineer Alx Block devoted a blog post to his experience since joining the company, and how it has transformed his notion of customer support. He concluded:
Just because I couldn’t previously accept the word support for what it is, doesn’t mean that I don’t identify as support. This word has taken on new meaning for me, and it’s a positive switch.
Also on the Happiness team, Zandy Ring wrote on the women of Automattic (and women in technology more broadly), and her own path toward finding a fulfilling job. She gave this inspiring advice to others who might doubt their skills:
Let yourself be the best in the world at what you want to do. Don’t give yourself an artificial constraint based on insecurities that don’t exist outside your own mind.
Taking a step back, the head of the Happiness team, Andrew Spittle, recently reflected on the challenges and rewards of providing customer support to millions of WordPress.com users with colleagues spread around the world.
Of course, being distributed globally comes with its own perks: several times a year, Automatticians meet their coworkers in locations like Puerto Rico and Vietnam. Their blogs are all the more interesting to read for it.
Beyond the screen
Like many WordPress.com bloggers, Automatticians devote most of their writing to the people, activities, and places they’re most passionate about. As the images in this post demonstrate, we have no shortage of photography lovers, including Automattic’s very own founder, Matt Mullenweg.
Photography is far from the only topic Automatticians explore on their blogs. If you ever need inspiration for WordPress-themed swag, Happiness Engineer Nick Hamze‘s blog is the place to be. Our resident gamers share their views and tips on their blogs, while Code Wrangler Payton Swick writes about his longstanding love for tea.
There is no shortage of food lovers, either, though few write about it and photograph it quite as well as Theme Wrangler Michael Cain and his partner, Meredith. For frequent literary detours, coder (and man of letters) Daryl Houston’s blog will satisfy any bookworm. Finally, proving that it’s never too late to start blogging, Happiness Engineer Kathryn Presner has finally taken the plunge and started her first blog — after years of helping others build theirs.
If this merry band of cosmopolitan polymaths sounds like a group of people you might get along with, consider joining us — did we mention we’re always hiring?
Dec 17th at 6:51 pm
That’s very nice pictures + thank you for your precious work
Dec 17th at 6:54 pm
Awesome group, Happy Holidays to you guys and girls!!
Dec 17th at 7:12 pm
No mention of any of the poor bastards who’ve had to look after me during the past two months … maybe they’re off taking a lengthy break, eh? But I think anyone who works in Support deserves every iota of kudos available: maybe you should set up a regular update on their activities?
Dec 17th at 7:18 pm
What a wonderful job description ! Great work and solutions when needed. Happy Holidays !
Dec 17th at 7:21 pm
Happy Christmas you lovely people. My blog has made me a happier person and a nicer mum and wife, and I would not have know how to blog without WordPress and the help you have given me. You are very lucky in the work you do, but then I think we often tend to make our own luck – so cheers to you.
Dec 17th at 7:31 pm
Good stuff to know about.
Dec 17th at 7:37 pm
We thank you. Truly appreciate the words upon words which are encountered here.
Dec 17th at 9:33 pm
Pretty neat to read and see nuts and bolts from behind the scenes. Happy Holidays to WordPress!
Dec 17th at 10:02 pm
Thank you WordPress.com for all you do. Happy Holidays and best wishes for a Wonderful New Year.
Dec 17th at 10:12 pm
What a diverse group of talented people.. Thanks so much for sharing this “behind the scenes” peek at your work place.
Happy Holidays WordPress !!
Dec 17th at 10:21 pm
Great to meet the backstage performers! Seem like a happy bunch, who love what they do. Truly appreciate WordPress & its contribution to the blogosphere via these Elves. You all need a well deserved rest so….Happy holidays & Merry Christmas to all!
Dec 17th at 11:23 pm
Some great quotes within this articles.
I think blogging is one of the best ways of stepping out of the irrational fear that no one wants to hear what you have to say.
Dec 18th at 1:15 am
I work for a tech company and also work from home, but I don’t think our semi-distributed workplace is quite this happy! Thanks for providing a glimpse into those who make blogging a little easier for the rest of us!
Dec 18th at 1:47 am
awesome! Merry Christmas to you all!!
Dec 18th at 5:53 am
Thank you and have a Happy Christmas! Aunty Uta
Dec 18th at 9:07 am
Reblogged this on Paolo Belcastro and commented:
A word about some of the wonderful people I work with.
Dec 18th at 7:46 pm
Thanks so much for sharing this “behind the scenes” peek at your work place.
Happy Holidays WordPress !!
Dec 23rd at 11:25 pm
You are doing a brilliant job. Makes blogging for people like me incredibly easy. Have a great Christmas and New Year!
Dec 25th at 1:08 am
nice pic. and Merry Christmas
Dec 29th at 11:25 pm
Very helpful information and great photos.