In the corridors of… Sonae BIT
BIT – Business Information Technology – is the information systems area for Sonae retail businesses, contributing to the work of around 40 thousand employees. The brand commits itself to develop IT solutions that contribute to dynamic and innovative resources in terms of customer/ user experience.
We are not talking about just the traditional market but a mix between the act of purchasing something in a physical and in a digital store: the information must be available at any time in a simple but efficient way, always looking for the costumers’ interests and needs.
BIT develops solutions for many different markets such as clinics, pharmacies, diet counseling, supermarket apps and even for the fashion market. Therefore, the brand intends to always be on the front line, developing new resolutions, which is imposed by the strong competition in the sector.
Headquarters & Human Resources
Right in front of São João Hospital of Porto, BIT’s offices are located in a modern building with five floors for almost three years, hosting 500 employees.
Besides being modern, the building has big and ventilated areas, full of natural light and a minimalist yet cozy decor. The two lifts serve all kinds of purposes and functions: from the morning talk about the “hot” subject of the day to the casual micro-meeting. The conversations are recurrent and in a familiar environment.
The mutual respect is very noticeable, as we can see with the implementation of the clean desk policy: all employees settle in different places every day, “packing” all their things in the end of each day.
The meeting room might be the most odd area of the entire building, competing hand in hand with the individual meeting room (see video below). All birthdays of the month are visibible and opinions/ideas are always welcomed: the owners of those who are implemented by the company receive free breakfasts… for a week!
As this is a period of fast expansion for Sonae and, consequently, BIT, it becomes urgent the need for a cohesive and common organizational culture. This is how “Our Way” was born, a manual that synthesizes the way everyone should work individually and as a team, conveying the values defended by the company and which also works as a guiding thread for all employees, regardless of the area of work. Collaboration, informality, openness to change and respect for others’ perspective are some of the values followed by the company.
Porto Tech Hub
As the biggest private employer in Portugal, in the words of Sonae MC’s HR Business Partner , Vera Rodrigues, along with Pedro Rocha and Ana Paula, Sonae is fully commited with the objectives and initiatives of the Porto Tech Hub Association, being a part of this ecosystem since May 2017.
In addition to the common ambition to strengthen the region as a tech hub and bring talent to these areas, BIT has been actively contributing to the recognition of PTH, in perfect harmony with the other associates.
In addition to supporting and monitoring initiatives such as SWitCH, Sonae is very active in preparing new generations for CTEM by promoting initiatives where, for example, employees go to schools to appeal to the kids skills, discussing useful topics for their future. With the “Mão Direita” program (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N1eEZJ-EMXQ), collaborators share their tasks during a day with some students.
For Sonae the future needs to be built today. Awareness and encouragement of young people for CTEM should be the foundation for tomorrow. And Sonae goes ahead!