Detailed information about all 37signals insurance policies and other benefits can be found in Basecamp.
In the United States, medical insurance is provided through Blue Cross Blue Shield PPO. The company pays 75% of the premium and the employee pays the other 25%. Open enrollment is in November every year, with new coverage beginning December 1. Marriages and domestic partnerships are covered equally. You’re eligible for coverage on your first day of employment. If you are terminated or resign from 37signals, your coverage will end on the last day of the month of your separation date and you may be eligible for continued coverage after that (COBRA).
Each pay period, you’ll see a payroll deduction for medical insurance:
- Employee-only medical coverage: $76.93
- Employee-partner medical coverage: $160.26
- Employee-child(ren) medical coverage: $171.29
- Employee-family medical coverage: $254.61
Dental insurance in the US is provided through MetLife. The company pays 100% of the premium. Open enrollment is in November every year, with new coverage beginning December 1. Marriages and domestic partnerships are covered equally. You’re eligible for coverage on your first day of employment. If you are terminated or resign from 37signals, your coverage will end on the last day of the month of your separation date and you may be eligible for continued coverage after that (COBRA).
Vision insurance in the US is provided through MetLife. The company pays 100% of the premium. Open enrollment is in November every year, with new coverage beginning December 1. Marriages and domestic partnerships are covered equally. You’re eligible for coverage on your first day of employment. If you are terminated or resign from 37signals, your coverage will end on the last day of the month of your separation date and you may be eligible for continued coverage after that (COBRA).
Health Insurance for Staff Outside the US
If you’re outside of the US and pay out of pocket for private health insurance, you can request reimbursement for 75% of your insurance payments on your monthly invoice. Your monthly reimbursement is capped at the amount 37signals pays per employee per month on the US employee group plan. You may be asked to provide documentation to support your request for reimbursement.
37signals offers a $400,000 life insurance/AD+D policy to all staff through MetLife. The company pays 100% of the premium. You’re eligible for coverage on your first day of employment, and it’s terminated automatically on your final day of employment. Open enrollment is in November every year, and participants are auto-enrolled at that time.
Our retirement plan for US employees is with Vanguard. 37signals matches 100% of what you contribute, up to 6% of your salary. You are eligible to enroll in the 401K plan with your first paycheck.
If you’re outside the US, 37signals will match what you contribute to a retirement account in your home country, up to 6% of your salary. In these cases, 37signals will pay you directly via your monthly invoice. It’s up to you to invest that payment and maintain administration of the retirement account and its taxes. You may be asked to provide documentation to support your request for a match.
Flexible Spending Account (FSA)
The FSA is an account where you can set aside pre-tax money for out-of-pocket medical expenses, such as prescriptions, over-the-counter medicine, vision care, etc. You have to decide up front how much money you want to put in the account, and the max is $3,050/year. There is a separate type of FSA for dependent care, and the max for that plan is $5,000/year or $2,500/year if you split this with a partner. This is an entirely optional program. Open enrollment is in December every year, with new coverage beginning January 1. Both FSAs are with Paychex, our payroll provider.
Paid Time Off
37signals offers 18 days of paid time off plus 11 local holidays every year. We ask that you track your time off. Your vacation time is prorated based on your start date during your first year at 37signals. Your vacation time rolls over year to year with a maximum bank of 27 days at any time. If you are terminated or resign from 37signals with vacation days in your bank, you’ll be paid the monetary equivalent for those unused days (prorated at the time of your departure).
In addition to annual PTO and holidays, every three years employees may take a 30-day paid sabbatical. Give your team a heads-up preferably three months in advance so they can coordinate. If you’re terminated or resign from 37signals with an unused sabbatical, 37signals will pay you the monetary equivalent of those unused days only if your unused sabbatical was earned within the previous 12 months.
We don’t offer a bank of sick days nor do we ask you to track your sick days. However if you’re unexpectedly away from work due to illness or injury for more than 5 consecutive work days, you’ll transition from sick time to Personal Leave. 37signals does not pay out for unused sick time upon resignation or termination, since we have no sick time bank.
Your manager will check in with you if you’re consistently taking 3+ unplanned sick days per month. Excessive use of sick time may result in disciplinary measures. If you have a medical condition you know will take you away from work regularly, please work with your manager for accommodations.
If you are unable to work for more than 1 week because of illness or injury, let your manager know as soon as you can. You can take four weeks off at 100% pay. If after 4 weeks, you’re still unable to work, your salary will drop to 70% for an additional 8 weeks. Your medical insurance will remain in force throughout your Leave. If after 12 weeks, you still cannot work, talk to your manager, and we will discuss what comes next on a case-by-case basis. You may be asked to provide medical documentation to support your request for Personal Leave, and Personal Leave is limited to one instance of paid leave per 12-month period.
We work 4-day work weeks from May 1 through August 31 every year. An employee who has just been hired may have to complete a training program per their team lead to be eligible. When a holiday occurs during summer hours, you can take the holiday off or your normal summer day off. Any additional days off would count as vacation days.
Day of Service
37signals also allows a Day of Service. You can take one day off every year to volunteer for a charitable or community organization of your choice. No need to use a vacation day or personal day, just let your team know you’ll be out. 37signals does not pay out for unused Days of Service if you resign or are terminated from 37signals.
Scheduling Time Off
37signals doesn’t have a formal time off request process. It’s your responsibility to work with your manager and team to ensure coverage and manage your scheduled workload. The sooner you can inform your manager and team of your planned absence, the better, especially longer absences like sabbatical or long vacations. If your team has a defined process for scheduling time off, please follow that first.
The only time we ask you not to schedule discretionary time off is during a CODE. At 37signals, we assign a CODE when urgent work needs to be done. We have three levels of criticality. A CODE RED is an emergency, a CODE YELLOW is less immediate but still critical, and a CODE LAUNCH is called when we’re in the final stages of launching a new product. If we’re in the midst of one of these and you can delay your vacation or sabbatical until after the code has ended, please do.
If you become the primary caregiver of a child, you can take up to 16 weeks leave at 100% pay. If you become the secondary caregiver of a new child, you can take up to 6 weeks leave at 100% pay. You may choose to take an additional unpaid leave as the primary or secondary caregiver.
Some states require us to provide additional benefits.
When you lose a loved one, you can take paid time off from work for bereavement, making arrangements, settling family affairs, and attending the funeral or memorial service. Let your manager know your plans as soon as you can so they can arrange for your absence.
You can take ten days of bereavement leave for the death of a spouse or partner, child or child-in-law, parent or parent-in-law, or sibling or sibling-in-law. You can take three days of bereavement leave for the death of a grandparent, niece or nephew, cousin, or close friend. These caps are not to say you must return to work after so many days; you can use any of your available vacation time if you find you need more time off after bereavement leave. And if you know you’ll be away from work for much longer than outlined above, please talk to your manager to discuss that special case.
Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
The 37signals EAP is through ComPsych, and it provides a confidential avenue for you to get assistance with issues regarding health, family, legal, financial, wellness or other personal matters. When you call or email ComPsych, you’ll be connected to a certified representative who can help you one-on-one at that time, or who can refer you to someone in your area for longer-term help. Services range from immediate or crisis mental health care to phone-help on your 401k investments to a referral to a lawyer in your area to help with your estate planning. Because we use the EAP, you also receive discounts on those referrals to professionals.
For your fur babies! 37signals doesn’t contribute to this plan at all, but everyone gets a 10% discount on this insurance you might otherwise buy. There are no set rates, and you can visit our portal on Figo’s website to get your quote and sign up. There’s no open enrollment period to sign up for pet insurance.
Employee Profit Sharing
37signals shares 10% of its annual company profits with employees, which is distributed in shares based on tenure. Profits are distributed after the books are closed on the previous fiscal year, usually around March (e.g. 2022 profits distributed in March 2023).
You’re eligible to participate in profit sharing after two years of working at 37signals. You’ll accrue one share per month starting on your second anniversary at 37signals, and you’ll max out your shares at 10 years. We calculate shares based on months of tenure so there’s no unfair cliff between being hired in December vs January.
We ask that you think of any compensation from this program as not something to be counted upon, not something to be budgeted with, but as a true bonus. Year to year, profits and therefore the amount we’re able to share with employees may swing wildly or not be paid out at all.
This Program does not have any set expiration date, but the company reserves the right to amend it or cancel it at any time. You forfeit your shares in the profit sharing program if you resign or are terminated from 37signals before the distribution date.
Employee Liquidity Pool
There are no plans to sell 37signals or take the company public! But, in the slight chance of that happening, employees may be eligible to receive a portion of 10% of the value of the company if 37signals is sold or made public. That 10% would be divided into shares, and shares distributed amongst employees based on their tenure at the time of the sale/offering.
Employees are eligible for shares in the liquidity pool after two years of working at 37signals. You’ll accrue one share per month starting on your second anniversary, and you max out your shares after 10 years. We calculate shares based on months of tenure so there’s no unfair cliff between being hired in December vs January.
This Program does not have any set expiration date, but the company reserves the right to amend it or cancel it at any time. You forfeit your shares in the liquidity pool if you resign or are terminated from 37signals before the distribution date.
At the end of every year, 37signals gives a thank-you gift to employees. The gift changes year to year and is not intended to be a year-end bonus.
Employees also receive a thank-you gift on their anniversaries with the company.
Home Office Set-up
Since you work remotely, we want to make sure your home office is comfortable. During your first year at 37signals, you can expense up to $2,000 on things like a new desk, new desk chair, or other office furniture. This benefit expires on your first anniversary with the company.
Coworking Space Stipend
You can expense up to $200/month towards renting coworking space in your city. Please make sure you’re using a true coworking space that’s meant solely for working, not a club or social space like Soho House.
Everyone at 37signals has a subscription to Deskpass, a co-working desk reservation service. You can use Deskpass to find co-working spaces near you, and your $200/month benefit is pre-fixed in your account. You’re not required to use Deskpass to use your co-working space benefit. Your Deskpass budget is capped at $200/mo, but none of that gets paid out unless you book a desk.
Personal 37signals Accounts
All employees can have a free personal Basecamp account and a free personal HEY account. We’ll comp your existing accounts during your on-boarding process when you join the company. If you decide to sign up for either account later, you can comp the accounts in QueenBee so you won’t be charged. Ping Andrea or Support if you need help with that.
All staff carry a 37signals Visa card that you can use for work expenses like the benefits described above, software, computer equipment, meet-up travel, or office supplies. Check with your manager or Andrea if you have any doubts about whether or not a purchase qualifies as a work expense.
We use an expense management platform called Airbase. You’re responsible for the monthly categorizing of your expenses and uploading receipts for purchases over $75. Full instructions on how to log your expenses in Airbase can be found in Basecamp.
Overall, we trust our employees to spend money wisely. If you’re booking a meet-up flight, you don’t need to buy the cheapest, 2-layover redeye; buy the convenient, well-priced seat. If you’re attending a conference on behalf of 37signals, we’ll buy your meals. Just try to stay away from caviar and champagne at dinner (okay, maybe once if you have a great day to celebrate).
Speaking of conferences — please limit your attendance at professional conferences to once a year. Don’t extend your hotel stay too far to either side of the conference schedule; you should be traveling specifically to attend the conf. Our conference budget guidelines mirror our mini meet-up budget guidelines; you can find those in Basecamp.