West Arete
Career
Why West Arete?
We believe one of the keys to a happy life is working hard and enjoying your work.
The primary reason we work at West Arête is because we get to do cutting-edge software development, hold ourselves to the highest level of computer engineering and work with people intent on doing good in the world.

For this reason, we joined our clients and secured our BCorp Certification this year—the gold standard for companies that seek to do good in the world. Our clients are chosen based on virtue. We choose to work only with organizations who aim to make a positive impact in their community or on the world.

We believe the formula for enjoying work is craft + passion—and encourage each other to pursue both at West Arête. We hone our craft as students of scrum and Ruby on Rails. Test-driven development is integral to our "code culture", as we pride ourselves on creating quality software that will never fail our clients.

We don't like being told what to code. We prefer to work directly with the experts in their own field, and hear about the problems and opportunities that they see, and collaborate with them to find the right solutions. Sometimes it's harder than just being told what to build, but it's so much more satisfying when you know that you're building exactly the right thing.

We love the fact that we each work with a broad range of clients over the years, rarely spending more than a handful of months on a single project. This diversity allows us to bring a fresh "beginners mind" to each new area that we touch.

We love the fact that the software craftsmanship culture has taken hold over the past several years. For us, the discovery that the only path to a long career is through the pursuit of mastery.
We pursue our passions by taking a one-month paid sabbatical each year.
Our signature, mind-blowing benefit is that every employee at West Arete gets a fully-paid, fully-unplugged one month sabbatical, every year. The idea is to allow each person to do something that is deeply meaningful to them that they would never have the opportunity to do if they had a full-time job. Some of us use that time to build surfboards and cabins, while others invest it with family or adventures. They're all life-changing experiences.
Some of the most talented and valuable people in our working lives could never fit in a 40-hour/week box. We pride ourselves on crafting each individual's schedule to allow them to live their outside lives to the their fullest potential, whether that's for children, or music, other crafts. Leaving early to meet up with out of town guests, attend networking events or give yourself a mental break is seen as a way to refill your energy levels—not a way to escape work. We have better, more professional ways to provide healthy accountability than simply counting hours.
Some of the most talented and valuable people in our working lives could never fit in a 40-hour/week box. We pride ourselves on crafting each individual's schedule to allow them to live their outside lives to the their fullest potential, whether that's for children, or music, other crafts. Leaving early to meet up with out of town guests, attend networking events or give yourself a mental break is seen as a way to refill your energy levels—not a way to escape work. We have better, more professional ways to provide healthy accountability than simply counting hours.
We also know that exercise is important, and hard. Gym memberships and fancy running shoes don't mean anything if you don't use them. We help you to get over that hump with old-fashioned peer pressure and bribery, softened with a healthy dose of the honor system: every week that you set your own exercise goal and meet it, we pay you $10. And we'll help cheer you on.

We like our commutes to be bikeable. As a bike-friendly business, we all get a $50 bonus for biking to work and brag about getting to work in the hardest of rains or hottest summer day. A long out-of-town commute in our area is 15 minutes. And a traffic jam is anything more than 5 cars in a row. We love the fact that almost as soon as we're out of work, we're either at home, or at play.
We like that our kids receive the best public education in the state and we can always make it to school plays, sporting events and recitals. We like that our town is one of the safest in the country with a crime rate that is 46 percent lower than the Pennsylvania average and 60 percent lower than the national average. In fact, our health and our family's health is paramount, which is why the company pays 100% for our health insurance as well as life insurance premiums.
We enjoy living in State College, Pennsylvania because we're not interested in the hectic urban lifestyle of San Francisco or New York City. We have our own passions and don't care about the latest restaurant opening or sample sale. Instead, we prefer being 15 minutes from 400,000 acres of state parks with 1,000 miles of running and mountain biking trails, X miles of streams for our canoes and fishing poles and some of the best rock walls on the east coast.
We love living in a place with a small-town feel, while still having plenty of things to do.
We are proud to live in a community that hosts the annual Central PA Festival of the Arts; boasts great local breweries and wineries; and where we can drive 15 minutes from downtown to the local ski slope.

We like living in a college town that brings in acts as big as Kanye West and Bruce Springsteen, as well as the top thinkers on race relations and climate change; having a Trader Joe's but never having to wait in line at the checkout; showing up to the movies 2 minutes before it starts and not worrying about finding a good seat; being able to take weekend getaways to Washington DC, Baltimore, New York, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh; and seeing our town swell to the third largest city in Pennsylvania on Penn State football weekends.
If you're like us, we'd love to get to know you.
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