Happy Tools, for the Future of Work

Distributed work is becoming a reality for more companies. Automattic has been operating in a distributed-first fashion for more than 13 years now — we’re now up to more than 850 employees in 68 countries. But even in companies with physical offices, more employees are distributed around the globe and working together. Google just shared some fascinating stats about its work culture, with 100,000 employees working across 150 cities. Two out of five work groups have employees working from more than one location:

We’re a more connected world, so it makes sense that global business wouldn’t be confined to just one physical space. I often use Google as an example because I’ve been in meetings there where people were one building away from each other but still using video chat because of the time required to walk between meetings on their campus.

With that in mind, the team at Automattic has decided to start sharing our expertise and the technology that makes it all work. Introducing Happy Tools:

Our first product is Happy Schedule, which helps teams manage flexible schedules across time zones. Right now we’re rolling it out in a consultative way with just a few early customers to make sure the team can be totally responsive to their needs. We’re excited about this and other upcoming tools, because we believe that this is the future of work. We’re excited to have other companies give it a try.

Keep an eye on this space: There’s an entire suite of tools that make up the operating system of what has helped Automattic scale so effectively over the years. I’ve always believed it’s important to invest in your internal tools, and I’m excited to release more of them. If there’s something better in the market, we won’t release a tool for it—I’d rather use something external than have to build things ourselves—but where the industry still has a gap after such a long time, we’ll throw our hat into the ring.

5 thoughts on “Happy Tools, for the Future of Work

  1. I hope these new services don’t come at the expense of further development of WordPress and WordPress.com , neither of which are very user friendly compared to Squarespace and Wix , despite Gutenberg

  2. Really happy to see that Chicago’s new mayor-elect is off-and-running with another WordPress site at warp-speed!
    Moreover, her statements relative to Chicago actively supporting the expanding tech community are very encouraging.

    I’ll confidently bet that your tools (Happy) can save municipalities money by significantly reducing overtime costs… But I don’t gamble… “Cough”…WordCamp Chicago… “Cough”…generously sponsored by…”Cough”…the city of CHICAGO…”Cough.” 🙂



  3. this is a very welcome development, and would be helpful for smaller businesses as well. though maybe not all of the tools. we frequently find that many software companies are constantly developing, but some professions like ours are not developing at that same rate, not by a long shot, and we do not need the constant development. It drives up costs without the cost benefit as our business is relatively static. I can say specifically that it would help non-profits… Maybe a tools- lite with reasonable cost impact… IT demands, IT costs (never before needed) and lack of understanding of newer work trends (work from home) has put a strain on those operating by the non-profit mantra: “doing a lot with a little”.

  4. As someone with a business which really embraces remote and flexible working, I’m looking forward to learning more about your Happy Tools!
    I strongly believe that using technology to work closer together yet be geographically apart is the future and for many the key to having a happier yet more productive employees.

  5. Your map in the video didn’t include a ‘g’day’ speech bubble over Australia 🙁

    It’s interesting that your first tool, born from a need there at Automattic, is a feature that most PM tools lack.

    Looking promising too.