Wollongong based global software company Easy Agile is one business that has continued to grow during COVID-19.
Last month Easy Agile moved into a new office more than double the size of its previous location after investing $750,000 in a new fit out and is presently employing four more people.
The business boasts a team of 17 but is so confident about ongoing growth it has room for 40 people on Level 6 of the MMJ building in Regent Street.
Co-founders Dave Elkan and Nick Muldoon said when NSW went into lockdown Easy Agile continued to grow which put the business in an unique situation.
"We realised there wouldn't be enough room in the office when we were allowed to return from working from home. So we doubled-down and invested $750,000 to complete our fit out." Mr Elkan said.
"Now the lockdown has lifted, and even though we're all free to work from home, most of the team chooses to come into the new office where there's plenty of room to spread out and stay safe."
Mr Elkan said many staff were actually begging to return which made him realise that if people are given the chance to work close to home, coming into the office was not such a bad thing.
Like many software companies most Easy Agile employees prefer to live, work and play in the city centre.
Mr Elkan said the team kept growing during COVID as demand for its products around the world kept increasing.
Which is why the business presently has four positions to fill and is providing relocation packages to make it easier for successful applicants to move to Wollongong.
Three of the jobs are for experienced web developers and the other is for a people and culture business partner.
Mr Elkan said Easy Agile is a people-first global software company based in Wollongong that believes there is always a better way to work.
The business voluntarily went into lockdown early when COVID first came to Australia.
To keep spirits up and help other businesses Easy Agile organised regular at-home dinners for its team and their partners or friends.
"We quickly adapted to working remotely, allowing time off to those who had care for their children without dipping into their annual leave," Mr Elkan said.
"Despite our best efforts, we soon learnt that we work better together in person. We put this down to us not working in silos or encouraging individual brilliance.
"The way we work requires lots of consideration and deep conversations. As a result, when it was safe to do so, the team was keen to get back together in person. Thankfully our new office is large enough for us to feel comfortably space out."
Mr Elkan said Easy Agile products provide teams around the world the capability to perform key agile activities such as User Story Mapping and Program Increment Planning remotely online.
It has been so successful at doing that Easy Agile took out the 2019 Wollongong City Centre Business Excellence Award. It ranked 45 in AFR's Fast Starters for 2020 and its revenue for the last financial year was in excess of $8 million.
Mr Elkan said he is in favour of more co-working spaces in Wollongong to reduce the need for people to commute. And would love to see more infrastructure investment in allowing people to work locally.
Some Easy Agile staff perks
- 12 per cent superannuation
- Coffee every morning on the business
- Summer hours: Staff can head home after lunch on Fridays
- $5000 for each employee per year to spend on learning and development
- Four days a year each to work on a charitable cause)
- Fine-dining team lunch/dinner every six weeks
- And the opportunity to work with global brands such as Lego, IKEA, Netflix, Disney and Audi