We take employee satisfaction very seriously, it's the reason we exist
It was 2010 and there were about a hundred employees working in the same office space, two of them, including our current CEO, who was also one of the founders of Agile Design, were tired of listening to their managers who are constantly on the alert. phone spoke to headset. It was actually impossible to focus on anything. The two soon came up with a less polite proposal that the manager go elsewhere to make his calls. He replied with a laugh: "Well, buy me a pay phone". The problem was that there was none on the market in the Netherlands at the time, so the only alternative was to make one.
That day, Hendrick and Job stopped working for that software company and became experts in acoustics. Agile Designs was born.
The first call box was unattractive and not particularly soundproof, but the boys had found their calling and realized through conversations with other companies that many workplaces were struggling with the same problem with no solution available.
After years of development, soliciting customer feedback and rigorous trial and error, our fifth-generation payphone, the Agile Design Pod, proved to be super functional, a quiet place to work with excellent acoustics and quiet ventilation. Initially, as with anything new, it was a struggle to sell them, but when people started using them and their office culture changed rapidly, the news started to travel and soon companies such as Microsoft, SAP and IBM bought them and were love it. We have sold them by the thousands and today the Agile Designs pod is the best selling pod in the Netherlands.
Hendrick ''It makes me so happy to see employees become happier in the fifth-generation Agile Design Pod. It's great to see that we can meet the needs of so many employees."
At first we thought we were selling silence, but we were wrong. Together with our customers, we noticed something completely different.
Noise and noisy in open-plan offices is a major obstacle to happiness at work, constant disruptions to telephone conversations and discussions. It's hard to find your concentration when it's lost because your attention has turned to the noise instead of your work. It takes time to refocus, you become less productive, less creative, and your potential is not fulfilled. It makes you less happy.
This was our wake up call. When we got rid of the noise problem, people quickly became happier. Happy people are more efficient, more creative and do better work. Happiness & satisfaction then became clear to us and quickly our goal for the future, not only with regard to our products, but with everything we do.
A happy person is 12% more productive. (source: University of Warwick)
A satisfied employee sells 37% more in sales (source: Growth engineering)
Happy employees reduce absenteeism by 66%. (source: Pryce-Jones, author of Happiness at Work / Forbes)
The work and the way we do it is changing rapidly. What was relevant in an industrial context does not apply to information work. What worked in an open-plan office won't work in multifunctional spaces. And what we learn about new digital ways of working will be obsolete once we start working side by side with artificial intelligence. Noise reduction is and will therefore only be part of the solution to happiness at work.
With a strong focus and investment in research, and a commitment to putting into practice what we preach within our own company, we are determined to find the other parts of the solution to happiness, and we intend to be happy while we do that.
Curious about our perception? read here our vision