On the surface, the two don’t seem to go together. Why would a social worker work for a software company? But asking that question forces us to evaluate other roles that contribute to the SAS experience:
- Why would an artist choose to bring their creative talents to a corporate environment?
- What would make a doctor choose to work for a technology company rather than a hospital?
- Why would a Montessori teacher leave the classroom for corporate America?
- Why would a culinary chef choose a technology company’s cafeteria over a five-star restaurant?
Katie Pegoraro, a program manager in SAS’ Work Life Center, says it’s because SAS is a trailblazer in the model of workplace culture and support. SAS serves employees through what Katie calls the "person-in-environment perspective".
“This perspective allows us [as social workers]to look at all systems in a person’s life, and SAS really does that as well,” said Katie. “SAS looks at a person’s access to healthy and affordable foods, access to exercise, to nature, to networking and to skill building."
The micro and macro wins
When you combine the resources made available by SAS with the number of employees and employees’ family members, the reach of the Work Life Center is incalculable. Whether it’s helping children get a better night’s sleep, assisting individuals with their mental health needs or helping employees find a way to have difficult conversations about eldercare, the impact of Katie’s work and impact on our employees' experience can be seen on a micro and macro scale.
Those micro wins may be when an employee thanks Katie or her team for their assistance in some of life’s most challenging situations. But the macro wins – they're visible every time we celebrates a significant win or achievement in the market.
While the Work Life Center isn’t helping to develop and ship our products, they are creating an environment where employees are supported and are better able to focus their energies, which inevitably creates better results for SAS.
“I never imagined I would have a job like this and that’s because, outside of SAS, there are no jobs like this,” said Katie. “When people ask me about the incredible benefits SAS offers its employees, I am proud to say that I am one of those benefits.”
Roles like Katie’s remind us that life doesn’t stop just because we come to work. Thankfully, SAS understands and believes that, too. Whether it’s our social workers, physicians, educators or our culinary chefs, we believe investing in the whole employee experience is a workplace imperative.