Corporate Sustainability

Avalara is committed to being a good steward of the environment and social landscapes in which we operate to create a more sustainable world. Our corporate sustainability efforts align with our core values and success traits: Optimism, Passion, Adaptability, Humility, Fun, Ownership, Curiosity, Simplicity, and Urgency.

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Avalara Serves

Our People

Throughout the year, Avalara organizes volunteer opportunities where employees are invited to make an impact on our local communities.

Avalara Gives

Each year, we contribute donations and time to organizations that focus on causes that are meaningful to our business, our customers, our employees, and our communities. Every December, Avalara employees participate in the Holiday Bake-off Event that raises thousands of dollars each year for a charity of choice. Charities supported by Avalarians have included Northwest Harvest Food Drive, Union Gospel Mission, Treehouse, Seattle Goodwill Book Drive, YWCA, Seattle Foundation, FareStart, Geeks Gaming for Good, Child Care Resources Center, and the Small Business Stabilization Fund.

Avalara for Nonprofits

We use and repurpose our space on select occasions to support our community. We use our office space to host nonprofit group events, such as Leadership Tomorrow, an organization that cultivates leaders who drive solutions that move us forward to a more resilient and equitable community.

Our commitment to empowering human achievement

Employee Education and Engagement

Employee engagement is critical to our success and a component of our executive and leadership bonus plan. Beginning in 2019, we engaged a leading polling and analytics firm to measure our performance and have invested in company-wide initiatives to support our engagement goals. We are committed to continuous improvement through our investments in coaching, mentorship, and training.

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We provide our employees with access to the LinkedIn Learning platform for classes that span from personal development to finance to leadership training.

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We provide various classes and training through Avalara University to support the growth of our employees and play our part in the global compliance revolution.

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We host AvaChat sessions, our monthly employee broadcast meeting with our CEO, Scott McFarlane, and other executives to discuss business highlights and insights.

Health, Safety, and Well-Being

Our response to COVID-19: Keeping our employees healthy, safe, and supported

Due to COVID-19, we have responded as follows:

  • Pivoted to a nearly 100% remote work environment and provided a remote work stipend program to our employees.
  • Created a COVID-19 Task Force to meet and update guidance based on emerging medical news about the virus. We launched an engagement survey to help us understand how Avalara is doing as an employer, specifically in the context of handling COVID-19 requirements for our office locations and the impact of the pandemic on our employees.
  • Bolstered AvaKids, our long-standing program for the children of full-time Avalara employees around the world, to offer weekly, virtual learning opportunities, programs, and events.
  • Offered virtual events for employees including virtual yoga sessions, trivia games, contests, a global talent show, cooking classes, and other diverse event programming.
  • Bolstered our focus on employee assistance programs (EAPs) that offer free counseling services, including mental health services and employee assistance with personal, family and work issues to Avalara employees. In addition, we host awareness events and workshops on mental health and wellbeing.
  • Launched the Node employee resource group (ERG) for remote workers. Node hosts wellness and work/life balance sessions for all employees.

Families of Avalara

We are partnering with Care.com to offer family care benefits for employees in the U.K. and U.S. We are paying for a membership for each employee to use Care.com, which assists employees to find childcare, caregivers, tutors, errand runners, and much more.

Our AvaKids program hosts an annual Bring Your Kids to Work Day. In the past, we have welcomed over 200 kids of all ages to our offices for magic shows, crafts, scavenger hunts, and special guests.

Health and Fitness

In our offices, Avalara promotes employee health and physical fitness by offering and subsidizing exercise and mindfulness programs.

In several locations, we offer in-office yoga, and have mindfulness and meditation rooms available to employees.

We subsidize gym memberships.

Our commitment to diversity, inclusion, and belonging

We strive to build an inclusive environment that encourages, supports, and celebrates the diverse voices of our team members.

Attracting and developing strong leaders with diverse points of view is imperative at Avalara. Avalara’s core values and success traits encompass an ownership mindset characterized by a strong sense of urgency and accountability for our actions and results. We rally around our orange culture and work hard to instill pride and excitement about our company. At Avalara, we win together!

To meet our commitment to diversity, inclusion, and belonging, we:

  • Seek and support talent from all backgrounds, and we have five (5) employee resource groups (ERGs) dedicated to fulfilling that goal and supporting our people, including Node (for remote workers), Women of Avalara, Veterans of Avalara, PRiSM (LGBTQ+), and UJIMA (African American/Black).
  • Require anti-harassment training as part of our new employee onboarding process and regularly for all employees.
  • Capture feedback on the extent to which employees feel that Avalara fosters a diverse and inclusive workplace.
  • Champion our Manifesto that describes our vision, mission, and guiding principles that we aspire to live out at Avalara. At Avalara, our success hinges on our people understanding what success looks like and working together to achieve our goals.
  • Observe and support cultural diversity through various initiatives, including:
    • Avalara hired a head of engagement and diversity in 2018.
    • We held a 21-day racial equity challenge, an important opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of how inequity and racism affect our lives and our community.
    • We rolled out a Managing Bias training class for the leadership team. This class is an ongoing part of leadership development.
    • Our UJIMA ERG has hosted three sessions geared toward understanding our black employees’ experiences considering the recent and historical civil unrest. Those sessions have also included reading and discussing the book, So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo.
    • In 2019 and 2020, we were a sponsor of the Grace Hopper Celebration, an annual event put on by the AnitaB.org Institute that serves as the world’s largest gathering of women technologists, where women from around the world learn, network, and celebrate their achievements.
    • In 2019 and 2020, we sponsored AfroTech, a multicultural tech conference that brings leaders in technology and business together to exchange ideas and build a strong Black technology community.

Leading with security and respecting privacy

Avalara is committed to protecting the privacy of individuals whose personal data we collect.

We support the security research community and welcome responsible reports of vulnerabilities in our systems. We do not prosecute people who discover and report vulnerabilities to us responsibly. We treat all reports with high priority. If the Avalara Information Security and Engineering teams determine that a reported issue is a security vulnerability, these teams will collaborate to implement compensating controls, remediate the issue, and inform customers and the party or parties responsible for responsible disclosure as necessary based on the risk associated with the vulnerability.

Avalara’s security and privacy policies and additional disclosures include the following:

  • Avalara Privacy Policy is located here.
  • Avalara Responsible Disclosure on Reporting Security Vulnerabilities is located here.
  • EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) information is located here.
  • GDPR Data Processing Addendum is located here.
  • California Consumer Privacy Act Disclosures are located here.
  • Avalara Terms and Conditions are located here.

Our commitment to environmental sustainability

Energy Consumption, Waste, and Recycling Reduction

At Avalara, we are committed to responsible management of our energy consumption, waste, and recycling methods. We currently:

  • Encourage recycling and composting in our offices and use clear labeling/signage to help direct employees to dispose of items in the correct manner.
  • Provide water dispensers in many of our office locations to encourage employees to fill reusable containers to cut down on waste.
  • Donate or recycle IT equipment we no longer use.
  • Provide compostable materials and/or reusable dishware and cutlery in all our office locations
  • Provide a public transportation stipend to employees and encourage alternative modes of transportation. Our offices are located near public transportation hubs and provide end-of-trip amenities including bike storage, locker rooms, and showers.

Office Spaces

We set out to lease buildings that are certified in Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

  • Avalara’s Seattle headquarters reside in the Avalara Hawk Tower, located at 255 South King Street, which achieved Silver LEED and was recognized for meeting the strict requirements of the 2030 Challenge.

Sustainable Sourcing

We are continually looking at ways to include more sustainable practices in our everyday work and are committed to partnering with vendors who have strong environmental, social, and governance (ESG) programs.

Examples of this commitment include:

  • For our 2020 Inspire Summit conference, attended by thousands, we hosted a virtual conference with a low carbon footprint.
  • We partner with Amazon Web Services (AWS) as our cloud services platform partner to further reduce our carbon footprint. AWS has a long-term commitment to achieve 100% renewable energy usage in its global infrastructure.
  • For office supplies, we source from eco-friendly product vendors as part of our commitment to sustainability.
  • We have selected a well-known US-based airline as our preferred provider for domestic travel. This airline was the first domestic airline to fly multiple scheduled flights using aviation biofuel and is committed to using only aviation biofuels that meet stringent sustainability requirements.
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