The Happiness Index is a global SaaS platform. It helps Human Resources (HR) teams and other 'people professionals' measure employee engagement and happiness drivers to power their people strategy.

Founded in 2014 by Tony Latter, Chris Hyland and Matthew Phelan, it's a highly successful platform and part of the Global Employee Engagement market worth est $74 billion.  The Happiness Index has given over 2.0 m employees a voice across 20M data points on happiness.

In 2019 co-founder Matt Phelan launched a WhatsApp group for senior HR professionals, 'HR Punks', but turned to Guild to provide scale and structure for the growing community.

After a successful seed funding round in 2021, Guild was Matt’s first choice for investor engagement, to provide them with a sense of ownership and community.

Results in brief

  • Investors feel a sense of ownership and get better value for their investment
  • Investors can contribute to the success of the business with insights, contacts and expertise
  • Investor comms made simpler and more efficient
  • Business has always-on access to a pool of supportive and informed experts including UX, L&D, finance, HR, coaching and performance
  • Competitive advantage that allows The Happiness Index to exceed performance of larger businesses
  • Investor community offers an attractive benefit for future investors to network with peers as well as the business

Matt told us more about how the investor community on Guild works and why it became even more valuable as the company ran a Seedrs crowdfunding initiative in 2022.

Why did you feel your investors needed a community?

"As an investor myself I know it’s true a small part of the reason investors invest is to meet other investors. As an organisation, investors don’t just bring financial backing – their support and expertise are just as crucial to our success.

As an indie business up against big VC backed businesses, the power of community is a huge part of our success.

We wanted our investors to feel like they were part of the company, not just their investment, which is why we call it the community 'Happiness Index Owners'.

Giving our investors a feeling of ownership through a community shows everyone that our success is their success.

They’re close to the business and they have the opportunity to add their expertise, contacts or insights which we think gives them better value as well as supporting us."

The Happiness Index Owners Community on Guild brings SaaS investors closer together
The Happiness Index Owners Community on Guild brings SaaS investors closer together

Can you give some examples of how your investor community has helped The Happiness Index?

"There are so many I know I’m going to miss some out.

An investor community means both the business and the investors get more out of the relationship. They want you to succeed.

Our group of investors really go above and beyond.

Investors have supported us with our website UX, moving into the French, German, Indian and US markets, building out Learning and Development accreditation, financial and board advice, customer consulting, HR expertise, coaching and performance. It’s impossible to name everyone but a few of those include Peter Ballard, Adrien Desboudard, Julius Ewig, Leander LeSure, Victoria Hall, Raj Nayak, Jim Brigden, and Ashley Friedlein.

We don’t have the big bags of money our competitors do, but the value we get from our communities is something you simply can’t put a figure on."

What’s next for The Happiness Index investor community?

"We’ve just successfully raised over £500,000 on Seedrs, from 237 investors. Each of those investors will be invited to join the owner community and I can’t wait to meet and welcome them.

We’re looking at adding both new subscriptions and new territories to our services and our growing community is a crucial part of that development.

Our investor community gives us insights from hundreds of people who want to help, have the knowledge we need and who want to work together and learn from each other.

As we grow, it just keeps getting better for everyone involved."

Header photo by Surface on Unsplash

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