What the heck is Grace?

Grace is our custom software, developed in-house so we can quickly and accurately extract and standardise data and turn it into open forms and visualisations.

It’s the day-to-day tool used by our data team. We’ll link you to the user guide when it’s available later.

Documents for you to read and agree with before becoming a Figure.NZ employee 🤓

There are five documents for you to become familiar with before you become an employee of Figure.NZ:

  1. Job Description : This is a short document that gives specific details about the job you are being hired to do. You need to sign this to say that you agree with it before you start. Each employee of Figure.NZ has their own Job Description.
  2. Employment Agreement 📜: This is a legal agreement that includes the formal structure of our relationship, your rights, our rights, and how we will navigate situations together. All employees of Figure.NZ have the same terms. You need to sign this before you start as well.
  3. Team Templates : In your Job Description you will see what teams you are part of. Each team has a Template that lays out specific and important details of the team such as its purpose and what it is responsible for. You need to read and understand the responsibilities of your team before agreeing to your Job Description and Employment Agreement.
  4. Figure.NZ Charter : Our Charter describes how we behave and treat each other. It is important you agree to uphold our Charter, such as agreeing to be inclusive and thinking about the needs of others as you work. If there is anything in the Charter that makes you uncomfortable, please discuss it with the Deputy CEO before signing the Job Description.
  5. Tohu (where you are now) 🔎 : This is an evolving document that holds the current body of knowledge about Figure.NZ as an organisation. The previous four documents are included as part of Tohu (minus personal details about your job), but there is a whole lot of other information we think would be beneficial for you to read before agreeing to become an employee. This includes details such as our purpose, who is in the team, who our partners are, the services we offer and how we work as an organisation.

All of these documents will evolve over time as we learn and grow. Changes that affect you will be made with you.

Job Description 🎖💪🏽


Title: [your title]

Start date: [your start date]

Salary: [your salary]

Type of position: [full-time, part-time, permanent etc.]

Hours of work: [your hours of work]

Who you report to: Deputy CEO

Your areas of responsibility

Teams you are in Proportion of your time spent focusing on each team
[Name of team] [%]
[Name of team] [%]
[etc.] [%]


For the employee: For Figure.NZ
Name: Name:
Date: Date:
Signature: Signature:

Employment Agreement 📜

This is an agreement between you and us, Figure.NZ Trust, your employer. We’ll call Figure.NZ “we” or “us” from now onwards in this document.

It’s an individual employment agreement, and we’ve entered into it under the Employment Relations Act 2000. The agreement (and your employment) starts on the date agreed in your Job Description. It will continue until either you or we terminate the agreement (following the rules we’ve outlined in this agreement).

Any of the clauses in this agreement can be changed or updated after discussion and agreement between you and us.

The basics of your job

What you do

You are being employed to do the job outlined in your Job Description (and we’re very excited about it 🎉). Your job might be permanent/fixed-term or casual depending on what your Job Description says. What teams you’ll be working in day-to-day is also outlined in your Job Description (more on teams up next). We will give you the relevant team Templates with your Job Description, and you can also find them in the Guide.

Figure.NZ is a place where everyone pitches in. You’ll be expected to take on additional duties (within reason) and follow reasonable requests that we make.

Sometimes we might need to change and update the Job Description, but we’ll always talk to you about this first and get your OK on it. If we want to make major changes, we’ll need to go through a restructuring process.


Responsibilities in Figure.NZ are set at the team level. We have eight functional teams:

  • Governance 🔭
  • Partners 🔮💰
  • Data 📊
  • Product ⚗
  • Development 💻
  • Communications 🎙
  • Organisation 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦 🏢
  • Operations 🔨

A person can (and probably does) belong to multiple teams.

Each team has a Template that clearly defines the purpose of the team, how it operates, and what its responsibilities and outputs are. It also covers how the team will interact with other teams and work together to achieve organisational goals.

The people in each team work together to agree who will do what, and the role you play in each team may be different. We will continue to refine this process as we need to, but we have found it works really well for both providing structure and focus, and still allowing flexibility and creativity.

If you have any difficulties with the areas of responsibility your teams cover, or how to best balance your focus across teams, you should talk with our Deputy CEO. Our structure and processes have been designed to get the best out of you and create an environment for you to enjoy your job. If either of those are not being achieved then we will do our best to change things as is reasonable to improve it.

Location and hours 🗺⏰

Location 🇳🇿

Our office is on Level 4 at 90 Queen St, Auckland.

Figure.NZ embraces a remote-first working environment. This means you can work from wherever you like, although we’d love to see you in the office, especially when you’re starting out to help you settle into your team.

Sometimes, we might need you to travel for work ✈️. This may include being away overnight. We will do our best to give you as much notice as possible about this.

Hours ⏰

You’re employed to work the number of hours per week agreed in your Job Description, minus reasonable breaks ☕️. You can choose what time you start and end each day.

Your hours can be varied if we chat about it and agree beforehand, but please work in with team meetings and deadlines. As much as possible, we’d prefer if you worked when the rest of our team are online, which is business hours, New Zealand time.

Figure.NZ operates a very high trust environment and does not generally track employee hours unless it is necessary for billing a customer—it is expected that everyone is sufficiently motivated to get things done. If you’re not getting things done, we may ask you to track hours.

Changes to your hours of work

Your hours of work might need to be changed sometimes. This can happen when:

  • You and we agree to change them, or
  • You and we can’t agree. In this case, we’ll consult with you.

If we need to change your hours, we promise to be reasonable and take into account your personal circumstances and commitments.

Equipment 💻

Figure.NZ is a small startup, and you’ll need to provide your own laptop for work. You’re responsible for insuring this and replacing this if it breaks.

We’re hoping to change this policy as soon as we can to include either giving you a grant to purchase a laptop, or buying one for you.

Reporting and management

Reporting 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

We have a reasonably informal reporting structure at Figure.NZ. Officially you’ll be part of the teams named in your Job Description, and the Deputy CEO will be your manager. Sometimes, like for a particular project, you might need to report to someone else—we’ll let you know who and when if it happens.

Goals and objectives

At least once a year, we’ll work with you to set goals and objectives. When we’re looking at your performance, we’ll be considering these goals and objectives, amongst other things.

The organisation as a whole also sets goals each year and teams take on responsibility for making sure we are making progress on those goals.

Performance reviews

At least once a year, we’ll do a performance review. This is to help you and us understand how we can keep getting more awesome, but we’ll also take it into account when we’re completing any salary reviews.


Sometimes, we might think that a secondment to a different project, team, client, or customer would be beneficial to Figure.NZ. We’ll discuss this with you, of course, but you’ll need to follow reasonable requests to complete the secondment.

Pay, expenses, leave, and benefits 💰✈️🏝


You’ll be paid the amount agreed in your Job Description. We’ll pay you each week on Friday for the week you’ve just worked. If there’s a public holiday that causes problems with timing, we’ll pay you earlier to make sure you have money in your account by then.

Salary reviews

Every 12 months, on your Figure.NZ birthday 🎂, we’ll review your salary. While we can’t guarantee or promise salary increases, we’ll fairly and honestly conduct the review and you’ll be a part of the process.

Expenses 🚖📎

Sometimes, you might pay for things yourself as part of your duties with Figure.NZ, like taxis or office supplies. Within reason, we’ll reimburse any expenses you incur, but you’re expected to use your common sense with this. If you’re not sure you should be spending money on something, ask first. You will need to provide a receipt to be reimbursed - we prefer photos/scans of receipts or emailed receipts because it’s not 1960.

Deductions from your pay

If you ask us to, we’ll take money out of your pay for superannuation, social club (if we ever have one), or union fees, and pay the amount to the organisation you specify.

If you’ve taken leave in advance, and then quit your job before you’ve earned enough leave to cover it, we can also take money from your final salary payment to make up for this.


Annual Leave 🏖🏄🏼

You’re entitled to 4 weeks of annual leave each year. This builds up (accrues) each month on a pro-rata basis from the day you start working for us. You’ll accrue annual leave as you work, basically.

On your 12 month anniversary, you’re legally entitled to start using the leave you’ve accrued. In reality, we’re OK with you taking this in your first year (this is called leave in advance), and you can ask what your accrued annual leave balance is at any time.

If you take unpaid leave, this might affect when you get your annual leave, or how much you get. Check with the Deputy CEO if you’re taking unpaid leave to figure out if there’s any impact. Paid leave (including ACC leave, parental leave and leave for voluntary military service) doesn’t affect the amount of annual leave you get.

When you leave, any remaining annual leave will be paid out, even if you haven’t been with us for the full calendar year.

Public holidays 🇳🇿

Figure.NZ is closed on New Zealand Public Holidays and you won’t be required to work. You’ll get all the public holidays in the Holidays Act off work as paid leave if they’re a day you’d normally be working. That’s up to 11 days each year.

Sick days 😷🤒

Once you’ve been working for us for 6 months, you’ll be entitled to 5 sick days leave each year. This will be added to your leave balances once a year on your 6 month anniversary date. You can accumulate up to 10 days sick leave total.

You can take sick leave when you’re sick or injured, or when your partner or dependents (including children or other people who rely on you) are sick or injured. We work in a high-trust environment, so typically a medical certificate won’t be required, however if Figure.NZ requests one, you’ll need to provide it.

We want you to be healthy, and for our team to be healthy. If you’re feeling a bit unwell, but think you can still work, please please please work remotely so you don’t spread germs.

If you’re genuinely not well enough to work (this includes physical and mental illness), we encourage you to take leave and focus on getting better. You can also choose to work a part-day if that’s what you’re feeling up to.

Bereavement leave

Grief is hard to process, and we want to be supportive of you. You can take up to 3 days of paid leave when somebody dies and you are bereaved.

Make sure you let the Deputy CEO know if there’s something else we can do to support you during your time of loss.

Parental leave


New parents get leave as per the Parental Leave and Employment Protection Act 1987. There are lots of different parts of the parental leave laws, but know that we’ll support you to take either primary carer or spouse/partner leave (and excitedly favourite your cute photos on Slack), and to return to work when you’re ready, as per all our requirements under the law.

Unpaid Leave

You can request to take unpaid leave from your work here at Figure.NZ. When you request this, we’ll look at the workload we have on amongst other factors to see if we can approve the leave without compromising Figure.NZ’s ability meet our goals. We’ll also consider your needs, particularly in cases like:

  • Personal matters/compassionate reasons
  • Undertaking work-related study
  • Gaining additional work-related experience.

Other Benefits


You can choose to join the KiwiSaver scheme. As a new team member, you’ll automatically be enrolled, so make sure you fill in the forms to let us know if this isn’t what you want.

KiwiSaver is a voluntary, work-based savings programme to help you save for your retirement. We contribute 3% to your KiwiSaver (over and above your salary), and you can choose the amount you contribute (this comes out of your salary).

Flu shots 💉

It’s important to us that you stay happy and healthy. If you want to get a flu shot (Influenza vaccination) each year, Figure.NZ will reimburse you for the cost of this. You’ll need to arrange for the vaccination through your GP. Make sure you keep the receipt so we can reimburse you.

Health and Safety 🏥💊

Your health and safety, and that of the rest of our team is super important to us. We all need to meet our legal requirements.

Our team has a health and safety policy we all (including you!) need to follow. This covers all types of health—physical and mental. We’ll update this, as we need to, and of course, you need to follow the new bits as well as the old bits. Sometimes, other things might come up that mean we need to give you instructions about health and safety. If this happens, you’ll need to follow those too.

On a practical level, we make a commitment to you that we’ll take all the steps we reasonably can to make sure the place you work is safe and healthy. Because we’re a remote-first team, a lot of the time you might not be in our office, so it’s important that you take ownership of your own health and safety and do your best to make sure that the other places you work are safe and healthy too.

Like we said under ‘Sick Leave’, part of this is making sure you don’t spread germs around the office if you’re contagious. If in doubt (and you’re well enough to work), work from home.

Other important things you need to do or not do

Policies and systems

As a team we are regularly defining and refining policies and systems that help us do a great job and have a great environment for all of the team. You need to both follow and contribute to these policies and systems. They are not there to restrict you, so if you have ideas for how they can be improved we expect you to discuss this with the relevant people in the organisation.

Confidentiality 🙊

All of our team here at Figure.NZ share in a high-trust way. We do our best to share resources and knowledge that we create publicly. We’re also very open and honest about what’s going on in the organisation, from business secrets to personal lives to jokes and opinions.

This means you’ll have access to lots of information that, if you shared it publicly, could hurt our organisation 🙊. We trust you to share responsibly, but you must not share anything that will damage the reputation or business of Figure.NZ.

We’ve got a confidentiality policy in Tohu that you need to follow. Anything in Tohu (our open-access public documentation), can, of course, be freely shared. If it’s not in Tohu, you should check whether you can share it first.

If we’ve explicitly said something is confidential, or if it’s in our non-public documentation, it’s very important that you do not share this. This includes non-disclosure agreements we have signed with our partners. If you are in doubt about whether something is confidential or not, ask.

This applies both while you’re a part of our team here at Figure.NZ, and after you leave us (though you’ll always be a part of our team in our hearts).

Things that you create while you’re at work for Figure.NZ are owned by Figure.NZ. This means you should check with us (and with what our Confidentiality Policy says) if you want to re-use or share them, and if we don’t give you permission, you can’t.

As a rule of thumb, our brand and software and data systems cannot be shared or reused, unless we explicitly say so.

Where possible, we try and make things we create open-access, which means you’ll be able to share and re-use them. If you think something should be open-access, get it added to Tohu (our open-access public documentation).

Conflicts of interest

When you’re acting as our employee, you (or other people you work with or have a relationship with) can’t get any benefits (including payments 💰 or other benefits 💎💳) from anyone who has a relationship with us or is planning to have a relationship in the future.

This is called a conflict of interest.

You also have to be careful about the perception of conflicts of interest, i.e., situations where even if there is no direct benefit to you or someone you have a relationship with, other people might think that there is some fishy going on :fish:. Figure.NZ people are often doing other things apart from their day jobs, so this is something that we all have to manage.

If you have an actual conflict of interest at any point or you think that there is a risk of a conflict being perceived, you need to let us (and the other people involved) know.

When you do, or if we notice an actual or perceived conflict you have, we’ll work with you to decide what you need to do to manage it. You’ll need to follow whatever directions we decide on—this is important as it’s a legal requirement.

Representing Figure.NZ

When you’re representing Figure.NZ, whether it’s online, on social media, via email, or in person (or some other means 📻📺📠), you need to follow our values. This means don’t do anything illegal, and don’t do things that will embarrass us or hurt our reputation. Basically, don’t be a jerk.


The people we work with are important to us and we have to protect them. This includes you, and our patrons, sponsors, strategic partners, customers, and anyone else we deal with.

This means you and we need to keep their secrets and respect their privacy, following our obligations under the Privacy Act.

You have to do your own work 🏋🏾

We’re hiring you to do your job, not someone else. This means you can’t just get someone else to do it, even if you pay them (so no assigning or subcontracting your work elsewhere!).

Resolving employment relationship problems 🙋🏾🚣🏽

If you have any employment issues (or any other issues you just want to chat about), talk to the Deputy CEO of Figure.NZ as soon as possible so they can be resolved. If you feel like you can’t talk to the Deputy CEO for some reason, talk to the CEO.

If we can’t find a way to resolve the issue, either you or us can ask for help from the Department of Labour’s mediation service. If your issue is a personal grievance, you need to talk to us about it within 90 days of the issue occuring (the issue you’re raising the grievance about) . If you can’t do this, you can ask Figure.NZ for an extension, or the Employment Relations Authority can grant you an extension.

If you’ve got a trial period in your contract, you won’t be able to raise a personal grievance for unjustified dismissal. You can, however, raise a grievance on any of the other grounds in the Employment Relations Act. This is sections 103(1)b-g.

Restructuring and Redundancy 🏗

Restructuring when your job might be transferred to a new employer

Under the Employment Relations Act, you get certain protections if we propose to restructure and your job might or will be taken over by a new employer. This type of restructure is defined in section 69OI of the Employment Relations Act 2000.

If this happens, we’ll start talks with the new employer as soon as we can about the impact of restructuring on you. This will include negotiating about:

  • whether we can transfer your job to them.
  • whether transfers will be on the same terms and conditions as this agreement.

We will also:

  • schedule talks with the new employer
  • tell you about when the talks are and how long we expect them to take
  • tell you what we plan to discuss
  • arrange for senior representatives to talk to the new employer
  • give the new employer all the information we can about you or other impacted employees, including terms of this agreement, unless we can’t because of statutory, commercial confidence, or privacy reasons.
  • encourage the new employer to offer everyone affected jobs with generally the same or better terms and conditions
  • tell you how the meetings go if they relate to you.

Ultimately, it will be the new employer’s decision whether to offer you a position, and on what conditions. If your job isn’t transferred to the new employer, we’ll figure out what (if any) entitlements are available to you. We’ll do this by talking to you about:

  • if there’s an option to stay working for us.
  • your redundancy entitlements (we talk about these in the next section ⬇️) and what they mean for you (including notice periods).
  • whether we can give you any extra support, like a reference.

We’ll consider your feedback, and after the meeting, we’ll confirm the outcome in writing for you.

Redundancy 🏗

Redundancy is when your job isn’t required any more. You can only be made redundant as part of a good faith restructuring process. If this happens, we’ll give you the same amount of notice as we’d give you for normal termination (this is outlined later in this agreement). You will not get any additional redundancy compensation.

Termination of Employment 💔

All good things must come to an end. Sometimes, you’ll end things with us, and sometimes we might have to end things with you.

Normal termination

Whenever you want, you can terminate our agreement by giving us 4 weeks notice in writing. This doesn’t have to be a letter 📝 or anything retro like that 🐦🐎🔥🏹; a Slack post will do. We might decide to pay you out for some or all of your notice period (this is called gardening leave 🌷🌿, and means you finish your notice period early).

We can also terminate the agreement between us, but we need to have a reason (cause) for doing this. We need to give you 4 weeks notice in writing too (again, it can be via Slack or similar).

Terminating for serious misconduct

We all hope it doesn’t come to this, but if things go pear-shaped 🍐, we can terminate our relationship immediately and without giving you any notice. This can only happen if there’s been serious misconduct on your part.

Serious misconduct includes:

  • Theft
  • Dishonesty
  • Harassing one of our team or our customers
  • Seriously or repeatedly failing to follow our (reasonable) instructions
  • Deliberating breaking/destroying stuff we own (this includes digital things as well as physical things (and anything else we own))
  • Doing things that seriously damage our reputation

Note: This is not an exhaustive list.


If we need to investigate anything we think might be misconduct, we may ask you to stay home and not work (suspend you) while we’re carrying out the investigation. We’ll discuss it with you before putting you on suspension, and you’ll be paid during this time.

Termination on Medical Grounds 🏥🤕🤒

Long-term illness is hard, both for you, and for us. You need to be able to focus on your health, and we have work that needs to get done (but also want you to be healthy!)

If you’re off work for 2 weeks in a row because you’re ill, we can require you to go and see a medical practitioner we choose for an examination. We’ll pay for this.

We’ll use their examination results, as well as any results you give us from your own doctor, to decide whether you’re realistically able to do the work required of you in your job, or if you’re too unwell. If you’re too unwell, we can terminate our agreement by giving you 2 weeks notice.

Abandonment of Employment 🏃🏼💨

🎶 What I want to know baby, what we had was good How come you don’t call me Anymore, yeah? 🎶

If you’re away from work, you need to let us know. We worry about you, OK? If you’re away for 3 work days in a row (this also includes days with weekends in the middle, like being away Friday, Monday, Tuesday), and you don’t get in touch with us, our agreement will automatically be terminated with no notice period.

We can only do this if we’ve also made reasonable attempts to get in touch with you 📱💻 . Which we will, because we’ll be worried!

What you have to do when you stop working for us

Unsurprisingly, when you finish working for us, you have to give us back our stuff. This includes physical things, like books and furniture and swipe cards and Post-its (we all 💖 the Post-its) as well as digital stuff like code or design files (this is not an exhaustive list, of course). It also includes things we don’t own, but are responsible for.

Our obligations to each other

Our obligations to you 💞

We promise to:

  • Be a good and honest employer in our dealings with you
  • Work with you, and anyone you choose to be your representative, in any aspect of our employment relationship in good faith.
  • Do our very best, and take all the practical steps we can, to make sure our work environment is safe and healthy for you.

Your obligations to us 💞

You promise to:

  • Follow reasonable and lawful instructions we give to you.
  • Diligently and skillfully do the work required of you (as much as you reasonably can).
  • Act in the best interests of Figure.NZ and your relationship with us.
  • Work with us in good faith in all parts of our work relationship.
  • Follow our policies and procedures, including our code of conduct, including any new ones we add.
  • Do your very best, and take all the practical steps you can, to create a safe and healthy work environment for you and the rest of our team.

About this agreement ✍🏾

Making changes to it

Either you or we can make changes to this agreement, but it has to be in writing and we both have to sign the changes 🖋📄. If it’s not in writing and signed, neither you or us has to follow it.

Each part of the agreement is independent (severable)

This agreement is severable, which means that each part can be divided up, and if, for some reason, one part isn’t able to be enforced or is illegal, the other parts still apply.

Basically, the whole contract doesn’t dissolve if one part is wrong. It’s like that saying; you don’t throw the baby out with with the bathwater 👶🏽🛁.

Your acknowledgement

Before agreeing this agreement, you can get independent advice about it. That means you can talk to a laywer ⚖ or someone else you trust.

For the record, by signing this agreement you agree that:

  • You’ve been told you can get independent advice (see, we even did it right above this!).
  • You’ve had a reasonable amount of time to do that.
  • You’ve got a copy of this agreement.
  • You’ve read these terms of employment, and you understand both what they say and what they mean for you and your actions.
  • You agree to follow all the terms of employment, as well as any other policies Figure.NZ has, and procedures we have or implement.
  • The information you’ve given us is true and accurate, as far as you know.


For the employee: For Figure.NZ
Name: Name:
Date: Date:
Signature: Signature

And, we’re done 🎤⬇️.

How does leave work?

Depending on your contract you may or may not be entitled to Sick days and Annual leave.

When you are sick, stay at home and don’t infect others! Please let either your manager or Lillian know, or if you feel comfortable to do so, let us know in Slack at earliest convenience.

For going on holiday—yay! Lucky you! Please give sufficient notice that is appropriate. We expect you to give more notice if you’re taking six months off than a long weekend.

Leave needs to be logged in our iPayroll system.

What’s my position description?


Job Description 🎖💪🏽


Title: Chief Data Officer

Start date: [start date]

Salary: [salary]

Type of position: [type, e.g., Full-time, permanent]

Hours of work: [hours, e.g., 40]

Who you report to: Deputy CEO

Your areas of responsibility

Teams you are in Proportion of your time spent focusing on each team
Data 80%
Communications 20%


For the employee: For Figure.NZ
Name: Name:
Date: Date:
Signature: Signature:


Job Description 🎖💪🏽


Title: Chief Executive Officer

Start date: [start date]

Salary: [salary]

Type of position: [type, e.g., Full-time, permanent]

Hours of work: [hours, e.g., 40]

Notice period: [notice period]

​ (superceding the 1 month period in the Employment Agreement)

Who you report to: The Board

Your areas of responsibility

Teams you are in Proportion of your time spent focusing on each team
Governance 5%
Strategy 20%
Partners 40%
Communications 25%
Organisation 10%


For the employee: For Figure.NZ
Name: Name:
Date: Date:
Signature: Signature:

Data Officer

Job Description 🎖💪🏽


Title: Data Officer

Start date: [start date]

Salary: [salary]

Type of position: [type, e.g., Full-time, permanent]

Hours of work: [hours, e.g., 40]

Who you report to: Deputy CEO

Your areas of responsibility

Teams you are in Proportion of your time spent focusing on each team
Data 80%
Communications 20%


For the employee: For Figure.NZ
Name: Name:
Date: Date:
Signature: Signature:

Head of Design

Job Description 🎖💪🏽


Title: Head of Design

Start date: [start date]

Salary: [salary]

Type of position: [type, e.g., Full-time, permanent]

Hours of work: [hours, e.g., 40]

Who you report to: Deputy CEO

Your areas of responsibility

Teams you are in Proportion of your time spent focusing on each team
Product 80%
Communications 15%
Organisation 5%


For the employee: For Figure.NZ
Name: Name:
Date: Date:
Signature: Signature:

Product Manager

Job Description 🎖💪🏽


Title: Product Manager

Start date: [start date]

Salary: [salary]

Type of position: [type, e.g., Full-time, permanent]

Hours of work: [hours, e.g., 40]

Who you report to: Deputy CEO

Your areas of responsibility

Teams you are in Proportion of your time spent focusing on each team
Product 80%
Communications 20%


For the employee: For Figure.NZ
Name: Name:
Date: Date:
Signature: Signature:

New staff onboarding process

When you start, you will be assigned a buddy for your first week who will help you work through the following list of things. The process is designed to get you started on your job as quickly as possible, as well as to get you up to speed with Figure.NZ and its processes. Your buddy is also there to help answer any of the ‘why’, ‘who’ ‘what’ and ‘how’ questions you might have :)

We will make a Trello card in the #organisation board that duplicates these checklists, and as items are completed, whoever is responsible for them will tick them off. Because there is nothing quite like a completed list to make you feel like one of the team.

Hey Buddy

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Assign a buddy Deputy CEO First day
◽️ Make sure new starter has a private message channel on Slack with buddy Buddy First day
◽️ Get initial contact details: full name, email address, phone number, photo Buddy First day

Software access

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ G Suite account (email and more) CTO First day
◽️ 1Password for Teams account CTO First day
◽️ Grace login Development Team If required

Fear not! The details of what you need to do to get all the software you need working on your computer will also be explained to you.

Winning with Slack and Trello

There is some useful information on our systems here on Tohu. Your buddy will talk you through it.

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Explain the basics of Slack Buddy First day
◽️ Explain the basics of Trello Buddy First day
◽️ Ensure you are in the right channels and boards New starter First day
◽️ Understand expectations on mentions New starter First day
◽️ Make sure notifications are set up appropriately New starter First day
◽️ Learn how to mute a channel New starter First day

Other tools

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Basics of 1Password Buddy First day
◽️ Basics of Github Buddy As necessary
◽️ Basics of Google Docs Buddy As necessary

Background on Figure.NZ and meet the teams

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Our mission and purpose CEO sometime
◽️ Our values CEO sometime
◽️ Our brand story CEO sometime
◽️ Our organisational history CEO sometime
◽️ How we are funded and introducing the Partners team CEO sometime
◽️ Meet the Data Team and do a Grace demo Buddy sometime
◽️ Meet the Product Team and do a website demo Buddy sometime
◽️ Meet the Comms Team and learn about Tohu Buddy sometime
◽️ Meet the Development Team Buddy sometime
◽️ Meet the Operations Team Buddy sometime

Office tour

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Tour of office including bathrooms and kitchen Buddy First day (or first day in office)
◽️ Shared and specific office responsibilities Buddy First day (or first day in office)
◽️ Health and safety Deputy CEO First day (or first day in office)
◽️ Emergency procedures Deputy CEO First day (or first day in office)
◽️ Introduction to the Organisation team Deputy CEO sometime
◽️ Swipe card and office security procedures Buddy First day (or first day in office)

How we work together

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Who works here and what they all do Buddy First week
◽️ How do we communicate as a team Buddy First week
◽️ Introduction to Team Charters Buddy First week
◽️ Day-to-day processes (checkin, meetings, emojis, Slack etiquette) Buddy First week
◽️ Overview of objectives process, and our current objectives Buddy First week
◽️ Fill out the communications style survey New starter First week

Update websites

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Get photograph taken if you haven’t provided one Product Team First two weeks
◽️ Bio and contact details added to website Product Team First two weeks
◽️ Added to Tohu for all relevant teams Product Team First two weeks
◽️ Added to emergency contact post in Slack Product Team First two weeks
◽️ Gather any info relevant to team events including dietary requirements Buddy First two weeks

Payroll and HR stuff

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Employee set up on iPayroll CEO First week
◽️ Set up first fortnightly checkin Deputy CEO First week
◽️ Talk about hours of work Deputy CEO First week
◽️ Talk about holidays and sick leave Deputy CEO First week
◽️ Talk about how performance assessment works Deputy CEO First week

At last

  Task Who is responsible By when
◽️ Feedback on onboarding process to Deputy CEO New starter sometime

Team events

Anyone can throw a team event 🎉 at Figure.NZ. There are 2 types:

  1. Informal fun events: hanging with some or all of the team on an opt-in basis.
  2. Official events: ones where we’d like everyone to participate.

Informal fun events

If you’re throwing an informal fun event, just clearly state it’s informal (so people don’t feel obliged if they’re not into the activity) and have fun!

Official events

If you’re throwing an official event, it’s important that it’s as inclusive as possible. This means there are some things to consider and communicate to the team ahead of the event.

  • Purpose of the event: i.e. team building, celebration, etc.
  • How different dietary needs will be catered for.
  • Options for drinks: Note that not all of our team drink alcohol.
  • Location.
  • Transport to and from the location. Keep in mind that some of our team won’t be in their home town/city for events.
  • Cost:
    • What the cost will be
    • Who will be paying (i.e. individuals, or Figure.NZ)
  • Accommodation for out-of-towners.
  • Childcare options.
  • Whether it’s okay to bring partners, family, or friends.
  • Ability to opt out of activities if you want, and leave at any time.
  • Sound levels: Hearing difficulties mean it’s best to avoid loud and busy spaces.
  • Temperature: Spaces that are too hot or too cold can make people feel uncomfortable, and/or can have unexpected health impacts.
  • Performance-based activities: Some people are uncomfortable being the centre of attention, which makes activities that involve getting up in front of a group unenjoyable.
  • Physical exertion: Mandatory sporting activities or physical exertion can make people with physical limitations feel unwelcome or uncomfortable.

Where can I find good food nearby?

What do I need to tell someone visiting the offices?

When you have a guest visiting, send them a link to this Tohu page which tells them how to find us and how the lift works.

You’ll also need to link them to our Health and Safety policy

We strongly recommend giving them either your email address or phone number in case the lift decides to play up or the doorbell doesn’t work.

How do I submit an expense claim?

Sometimes, you might pay for things yourself as part of your duties with Figure.NZ, like taxis or office supplies. Within reason, we’ll reimburse any expenses you incur, but you’re expected to use your common sense with this. If you’re not sure you should be spending money on something, ask first.

Assuming you have paid for something and want to expense claim it:

  1. Take a photograph/scan/copy of the receipt
  2. Email the copy to Emma Laing, our book-keeper, making sure you CC Lillian. In your email, tell her it’s an expense claim, and if the receipt isn’t clear, tell her what it is for.

What is Tohu?

Tohu is a publicly-facing website. It’s about who we are and how we do things. It is where you find the current versions of information about Figure.NZ as an organisation and our current best thinks about running an organisation or about collecting and publishing data.

Tohu runs using Jekyll and GitHub pages. We write documents on our laptops in Markdown using a local app (most of us use Typora)

What’s all this about Jekyll and GitHub?

You might be wondering why we don’t just have a normal intranet or use documents with tracked changes. We are a small team, after all. Part of it is because we want to share publicly — we work hard to build a strong and safe team and to write about how we do that, and we want what we write to be able to be used by everyone.

The other is that we want to avoid documents with final_version2_reallyfinal_noactuallyfinal.docx names. Our documentation is living. We’re constantly changing it, and we want everyone to have the same version. We also want to be able to propose changes in an efficient way, and be able to reverse them in an efficient way too, even if they were changed a long time ago. This means we something a bit more sophisticated — a version control system. We use git. You don’t need to know much about it, other than that it enables us to do some of the things we’ll talk about later, like create branches (draft versions) and then merge our changes back into the main copy.

How do I get access to Tohu?

  1. Sign up for an account on GitHub, including setting up two-factor authentication.
  2. Ping Nat or Rob with your GitHub username. We’ll add you to the team.
  3. Download the GitHub Desktop app for Mac or for Windows, open it, and sign in. Note: there is a more recent version, but this is a beta and doesn’t have all the features yet, so we need the old one.
  4. Click the ‘+’ sign in the top right-hand corner, click ‘clone’, and choose ‘Tohu’.

This will copy the site to your computer. You’ll get everything needed to build the site, but the bits you care about are the ‘Internal’ and ‘External’ folders, which contain the folders for each page in Tohu.

How do I contribute to Tohu?

Git works usings a concept called ‘branches’. These are like versions of the same stuff.

The version of the site you see online is created from the ‘master’ branch. This means anything you add (called a commit) to the master branch is published for the whole world to see.

That’s not ideal if we want someone else in the team to check our work first. So, when we start a new piece of work, we create a new branch for that piece of work. We save all of our work to that branch, and when we’re ready, we merge it back into Master.

We have a magical bot that publishes a draft copy of our work on a different URL so we can check it before publishing, too.

Contributing to Tohu

  1. In the GitHub app, make sure you’re on Master (4th button in top bar). Click the ‘Sync’ button in the top-right.
  2. Click the ‘Add branch’ button. This is in the toolbar at the top (it looks like two lines forking).
  3. Give your branch a name. Pick something that describes the work you’re doing. Make sure you’re branching off master. The branch name follows some basic rules:
    1. Use all lowercase letters.
    2. Separate words with a ‘-‘
    3. Start with bugfix if you’re fixing a mistake or feature if you’re adding or updating content. e.g. bugfix-fix-spelling or feature-update-objectives
  4. Click ‘Create branch’. Magically, all the documents in the Tohu folder on your computer will now save changes to this branch.
  5. Open the document for the page you want to contribute to.
  6. Write all the things! (For help on how to write Markdown, check out the layout section below, and the Markdown docs)
  7. Where possible, try and write in chunks/sections. When you finish a section or chunk of work, commit your changes. We do this so that the version control system has a record of each small change. This makes it easier to reverse changes if need to.
  8. To commit your changes, switch back to the GitHub app. There are two tabs at the top: history and changes. You want the changes tab.
  9. Your changes will be listed. Add a summary (this should be basic description of what changed) and a description (a more in-depth summary). Then, click ‘Commit’.
  10. Repeat this until you’ve finished making changes. Once you’re done, in the GitHub app, click ‘Publish’ in the top right corner.
  11. Open Slack. In the Communications channel, our magical Tohu bot will have taken what you published and created a special link so we can all see it. Use this to check your changes look right in the browser, and so that other people can see what you’re doing.
  12. When you’re happy with your changes, go back to the GitHub app. Check in the dark-grey section for an ‘Update from Master’ button. If this appears, click it. This will make sure any changes anyone else has made are synced to what you’ve done.
  13. Click the ‘Pull Request’ button in the top-right corner. Add a summary of your changes, and tag @natdudley or @robisaacnz so they can review it. Click ‘Send Pull Request’.
  14. If you forgot to tag someone, tell them in Slack. They’ll review your pull request, and merge it into Master so it goes out to the world.
  15. If they forget, prod them in Slack.

Basics of page layout

YAML header:

At the start of each document is a YAML header. This tells Tohu how to manage the document, including information like the title and subtitle.

title: The page title // don't change this.

subtitle: a brief description of page to help users figure out if they are in the right place.

hide: true (dark link a page) // whether it's included in nav

colour: "#351b3b" // the background colour for the header.

page_order: 4 // the order it appears on the homepage and in nav.

Heading structure

The side menu is generated using H1 and H2 headings.

On mobile, the only navigation you will see is the accordion headings, made up of H1. This means you need to think carefully about your H1 headings and make sure there’s enough to indicate the page content.

You don’t need to put the page title as an H1 — this goes into the page metadata under ‘title’.

Ensure that all content is under an H1. Don’t start an article with an introduction, then put your first H1, as this will mean on mobile, there is a body of text before the menu is visible, pushing it off the page potentially.

If you’re linking to an H1 or H2 section within a page, an ID is automatically generated for that by the menu structure.

Add #title-of-section-name with all spaces replaced by a dash as your link, for example:

For example:

[Lillian Grace](#lillian-grace)

If there is punctuation, remove it. For example:

[Measuring engagement](#measuring-engagement-with-figurenz)

Make sure all the letters are lower case, as when the link is created, it will all be in lower case.


Images are stored in the same folder as the index file you’re editing. Add an image to that folder. Give it a short, simple name.

In the Markdown document, add a line line below:

To add an image, the syntax is:

![description of image for accessibility](nameofimage.png)

The maximum width is 750px. If your image requires a larger size, include two versions in the folder, one at 750px width, and one at larger size.

Display the 750px one on the page, and then link to the full-size one; the browser it’s being viewed in will handle the rest.

[![alt text about image](image_thumb.png)](image.png)

How do I get a computer?

Figure.NZ is a BYOD organisation. That means we want you to own the computer hardware you work on. To assist you, we can provide money to purchase a suitable computer when you start work with us.

How it works

When you accept an offer letter from us, we make you a one-time grant of up to NZD$3,650 to spend on a laptop computer. Feel free to spend less: remember that we’re a charity and every dollar counts. You can also spend more and make up the difference yourself if you’d like a more expensive computer.

If you quit before the end of your first year, you can either repay the money, or give the hardware you bought back to us. After your first year, the hardware belongs to you.

In our Auckland office, we provide several spaces with a keyboard, mouse, charger, headphones and a large external display. These are available on a first-come, first-served basis to anyone who needs them. Factor this into your decision if you sometimes need a little more screen real estate.

If you already own a suitable computer and you’d prefer to keep using it instead, you’re welcome to do so. We’ll happily look after it as if it was one of ours, including support, software licenses, etc. We may require you to perform software upgrades to make your computer compatible with our systems, but we will support you to do this and if necessary pay for any required licenses.

What we expect

We encourage you to buy light and portable. There are some suggestions below. You can buy anything on the suggested list without further consultation, but we’re happy to work with you if you’d like to customise or buy something more specific to your needs.

We expect the hardware you buy to remain viable for work use for at least three years, and the money you spend must include AppleCare.

What you need to do

Whether you use your own computer or a computer we pay for, we have some simple guidelines we need you to follow. We’re working on a guide to setting up your new computer, but in the meantime, here are the basics:

  • You must install minor Apple system and software updates as soon as they become available.
  • You must use FileVault disk encryption with a passphrase you do not use anywhere else.
  • Your laptop must require a password to resume when the lid is opened.
  • You must perform at least one Time Machine backup every day, and these backups must be encrypted. We provide a free Time Machine target in the Auckland office. If you work entirely remotely, we’ll arrange something else.
  • You must install major OS updates within two months of their release.

What should I buy?

If you don’t do any data extractions or you’re likely to carry your laptop around a lot (meetings, public transport, etc.), we recommend:

12” MacBook CTO: 1.4GHz i7, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, AppleCare. $3,643.

If you work a lot with data, we recommend:

13” MacBook Pro CTO: 2.3GHz i5, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, AppleCare. $3,588.

“CTO” means configure to order, a computer that Apple assembles for you specifically, rather than the standard retail version. Feel free to chat with other staff about their systems and experiences before making a decision.

What shouldn’t I buy?

While Figure.NZ was literally built on the MacBook Air hardware, we no longer recommend it (or any other Apple model that still uses MagSafe and DisplayPort). Our office infrastructure assumes your computer uses USB-C. We’re also an Apple shop and we’d prefer to keep it that way, so please talk to us before you spend money on anything else. Finally, please don’t spend your grant on anything other than a computer.

Ordering hygiene supplies

If we are running low on toilet paper, hand towels, or hand sanitiser, anyone can call the supplier to order more. The phone number and instructions to identify yourself are in 1Password.

Ask for supplies as needed, and if they ask for quantity, tell them “one” or “one of each”. One counts as several rolls/towels in a package.

Getting mail

Our Post Office Box for receiving mail and parcels is:

PO Box 345
Shortland Street
Auckland 1140

We have two keys for the PO Box – Lillian has one and the other is kept at the office. If you need to know where the office key is, please ask in Slack.

We don’t receive much physical mail, so we don’t regularly go to the PO Box. Instead, Lillian and Ngapera are notified by email when mail and parcels arrive.

Occasionally, if something arrives and you’re at the office, you may be asked to go and collect it if you can.