Lisbon, Portugal
Client since
February 2021
Company size

To Emma - The Sleep Company, growing with flexible benefits can be really restful

Emma - The Sleep Company's story

Emma grows around 200% per year in the Portuguese market
Expanding the company that sells mattresses that adapt to the needs of those who sleep on them is both fun and challenging
Fast growing team requires the whole process to adapt at the same speed, benefits included

The payroll is much easier, much more than writing checks. It is very important in this phase of education of the market that things work well, that these obstacles do not exist.

Filipa Guimarães
Head of Southern Europe

"There is that expression that I think is very appropriate when talking about Emma's relationship with Coverflex: great minds think alike." Ricardo Furtado, Marketing Manager at Emma - The Sleep Company, summarises the two companies as follows: highly digital in very traditional segments, born - and growing - at a fast pace, the way startups normally do, and not stopping at product problems, but instead solving challenges, always innovating and building them in a different way.

Emma - The Sleep Company has been in the Portuguese market since 2017. Portugal was one of the first countries worldwide to discover the B2C company in the area of the health and well-being of sleep. The star product, the famous mattress that adapts to all types of bodies and any sleeping position, was tested by Deco Proteste as soon as it entered the market and placed at the top of the list of preferences. “It was a great way to enter the market because it created an immense credibility for the brand”, says Filipa Guimarães, Head of Southern Europe at Emma - The Sleep Company, on the challenge of entering a space where customers were not so used to acquiring this kind of products on the internet. “Buying a mattress online was not something the Portuguese were very used to”, she details.

The Challenge

Growing more than 200% in the market since that first year, the journey in Portugal has been “a lot of fun but very challenging, especially in what comes to recruitment”, points out Filipa Guimarães. Emma - The Sleep Company decided, in order to keep up with the growth of the team on national ground, to open an office in Lisbon. “The market is much more flexible: it is, for example, much faster to recruit in Portugal than in Germany because sometimes we have to wait four to six months to onboard a new employee into the company”, says Filipa.

The search for greater competitiveness, taking advantage of Lisbon's attractiveness for foreign workers, made Emma look more closely at the benefits’ area, respecting the multiplicity of desires of a rapidly growing team. “Some want to have a car, others prefer public transport, others value health insurance more than anything else; some have large households, others are single; this multiplicity requires a system that is difficult to implement, that is tailor-made for each employee”, she points out. It was in the search for a solution that would allow the different profiles to be adapted to a tailor-made benefits’ offer, which would contribute to Emma's competitiveness in the market, that Filipa heard about Coverflex. “It seemed interesting to me: we decided to test it out and the response has been very positive”.

The first contact with the solution, especially for people who did not know about it, allowed them to explore the platform and realise its potential, in a kind of “market education process”. And Filipa saw at this stage an enormous resemblance to the process that Emma herself had already gone through. “When Emma started, and specifically when we kick-started the mattress testing upon purchase, everyone told us that people would order mattresses and return them so that every three months they could buy a new mattress. There was a lot of resistance to this new concept. And, in that regard, we identify a lot with Coverflex because we also had to educate the market”, she emphasises.

Faced with a “multiplicity of things that we had to solve”, Coverflex came to help. “First of all, it wasn't like us to hand out those '1930' meal vouchers, which have nothing to do with us as we are a very technological company. The way you present your product, your virtual cards, your app, everything works fine”.

Emma's flexible compensation management has been simplified with an “integrated benefits package that allows each employee to use what makes the most sense”. “The payroll is much easier, much more than writing checks. It is very important in this phase of education of the market that things work well, that these obstacles do not exist”, she points out. On the other hand, the use of Coverflex is accompanied by a discovery of details regarding the real potential of the amount they receive beyond their salary. “We maintain the startup culture even though we are 650 worldwide. We have a very specific DNA in Germany, which we want to pass on to the Lisbon office: we think ahead when the market is changing the way things are done, we highly value people who challenge the way things are done and who question. We have a lot of this culture that says failure is learning”, says Filipa Guimarães.

The Solution

The first time Pedro Correia de Barros, Global Network and Transportation Manager at Emma, heard about Coverflex was at Emma, ​​the company where he works. “First, I wanted to understand what it was”, he jokes, and adds: “It makes perfect sense in terms of benefits (...) And it allows you to have an overview of how much the company is investing with us. This kind of visibility is very interesting”.

Also, Beatriz Mirão, Retail Operations Manager at Emma - The Sleep Company, confesses that until she started working at the company, she had never had access to a remuneration package that included anything more than salary. “In addition to discounts, Coverflex allows you to have, in a single platform, health insurance, meal allowance and non-tax benefits”, she enumerates, underlining the importance of simple solutions for the younger generations. “People between the ages of 20 and 40 are no longer just looking for a salary. We look for benefits, we look for discounts, we look for agility and for more beyond the paycheck”, she concludes.

This story was first published on the Coverflex blog in June 2021.

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