Witad Awards 2021: Wellness/work-life balance award (vendor)—Elena Rusakova, Exactpro Systems

Women in Technology and Data Awards 2021

Elena Rusakova, human resources director at Exactpro Systems, has been busy over the past year with countless activities to promote the health and well-being of her firm’s employees. 

These have included sending surveys to staff to learn more about the problems they face and ascertain their professional needs. The company operates an employee appreciation program through social media channels, in which employees share short interviews about their career paths, their achievements at Exactpro, and the challenges they have faced.  

A second initiative is the organizing of “random coffee” meets. Participating employees are assigned a random colleague to have a short coffee with over video, aiming to learn about colleagues’ hobbies and interests outside work. She has also been involved in quiz games and setting up sports activities for staff where they can share pictures on Instagram, work out together and organize fitness challenges. 

At Exactpro, which has offices throughout the US, the UK, and Eastern Europe, travel used to account for a significant chunk of the firm’s activities prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. Through online activities, staff have been able to maintain their networks of relationships.  

“I personally met people who I never met before. And I know my colleagues also started communicating with colleagues they haven’t seen [for a long time]. We became even closer after we implemented all these initiatives,” she says. 

She says the keys to a healthy work–life balance are having personal, interesting hobbies and taking time to rest. Rusakova adds that a lot of problems are actually not caused by issues with work, though sometimes work shoulders the blame.

“We should think about how to help people not only from a work-related perspective,” she says. “Most of the problems  people have at work appear not at the workplace but at home because of different personal issues [such as] relationship with a partner, family issues, habits, lifestyle, etc. We should think about how we can help with these areas as well.” 

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