Charlie is the complete People platform for small companies, giving you access to everything you need to take care of your team.
By using Charlie, Bloom & Wild were able to keep their employee information safe, secure, and all in one place, as well as reward their team with a range employee Perks & Benefits.
Online florist specialising in home delivery
Bloom & Wild are best known as the inventors of ‘letterbox flowers’ – expertly-arranged and hand-packed bouquets, posted inside handy boxes that can be delivered even when nobody’s home. Since they opened for business back 2013, Bloom & Wild has gone from strength to strength – and now employ a team over 90-strong.
If we know anything about how HR works in small businesses, it’s that HR responsibilities tend to be picked up by an incredibly varied range of job titles. From Office Managers to PAs, Operations Managers to fully-fledged People professionals – the task of keeping a small company’s HR ticking over finds its way into the inbox of all sorts of different people.
This certainly rings true for Bloom & Wild’s Caitlin Price. “I definitely fell into the People function, and that seems to be the case for quite a few people,” she says.
“My first role at Bloom & Wild was a kind of hybrid role – I spent half my time as Executive Assistant to the CEO, the other half as the Office Manager where I was in charge of onboarding new hires. From there, I steadily evolved into more of a People specialist, and now my job title is People Experience Manager.”
If the exact job titles tend to vary, there is one thing these people all have in common; that the HR or ‘People’ side of their job is usually only one part of their day-to-day. What this means is that keeping the HR-side running smoothly is a serious challenge – people in these roles have a lot of plates spinning, and not a lot of help spinning them.
This is where a solution like Charlie comes into its own.
central location for everything
team member's personal data stored securely
hours saved per week
For Caitlin, one of the greatest benefits Charlie has to offer is a single, centralised database where she can store sensitive employee information both safely and securely.
“In the past, there was never a single place for us to store employee documents,” she explains. “All of that information was just kept inside someone’s head, or in a shared folder hidden away somewhere. That might work when a company is just a handful of people all working in the same room, but as a company grows that just becomes unsustainable.”
“The worst-case scenario in a role like mine is losing information and then having it come back to bite you. Let’s say you didn’t log a piece of information, or you logged it somewhere you couldn’t find again when you needed it... What if that information was someone’s pay rise? A situation like that could be really embarrassing”.
But storing employee information is just one side of the coin. The other is making sure that information can only be accessed by the right people – and only the right people.
“A lot of the information we handle can be pretty sensitive... things like salaries, bank details, or maybe scans of passports. However you choose to store that information, it does make you a bit nervous thinking about who might end up being able to access it.”
Keeping this data in spreadsheets stored in shared folders is a clumsy way of tackling this problem. Much of the time, you can either grant total access or none at all – there’s no space to pick and choose exactly how much different people can see.
“With Charlie, I’m in control of who can see what information. I can decide exactly how much different people can see, which gives me a lot of peace of mind.”
For anyone taking care of HR at a small business, being able to store employee data in one, secure space is incredibly useful – but when it comes down to it, it’s really just a means to an end. For Caitlin, Charlie’s greatest benefit is the time it has given her to concentrate on more exciting and impactful work.
“With Charlie, I’m in control of who can see what information. I can decide exactly how much different people can see, which gives me a lot of peace of mind."
“One of my biggest problems in the past was that it felt like my role forced me to react to events, rather than decide ‘this is what I’m going to work next’,” she says.
“People in roles like mine have got so much to think about – you are the first point-of-contact for so many things and people are firing questions to you over Slack all day. Having the answers to those questions in one, easy-to-access place just makes our lives so much easier.”
Having those answers close at hand has given Caitlin the time she needs to work on more impactful projects. Already, the Bloom & Wild team has rolled out a regular ENPS (Employer Net Promoter Score) survey so they can start working more strategically to improve the company’s internal culture. Next, Caitlin plans to work on broader wellness initiatives to make sure that Bloom & Wild offers a truly first-rate employee experience.
“You can get so bogged down in admin, and if you’ve got all that admin living in a hundred different places which don’t talk to each other, then you just end up spending hours clicking through files. And that wasted time is time you could be spending on more exciting projects.”
“One of my biggest problems in the past was that it felt like my role forced me to react to events, rather than decide ‘this is what I’m going to work next’,”