Hello Member: Cool Company
20 March 2019
Cool Company is undoubtedly a company name that you won’t forget in the first place. The company was founded in 2009 and expanded to the UK at the end of 2017. But what does Cool Company do? The LINK spoke with Jakob Sandström, Country Manager, about the need for flexible talent, the millennial generation and how Cool Company helps simplifying the interaction between businesses and freelancers.
What does Cool Company do?
Cool Company exists for the single reason of simplifying the interaction between businesses and freelancers. We do this in two ways. Firstly, we help freelancers work and invoice without having to start their own company. So, if you have a hobby or an entrepreneurial idea, Cool Company can let you commercialise instantly without having to think about business administration. Secondly, we help businesses easily engage with any freelancer in their network by helping them with on-boarding, project management and payment.
How was the idea of Cool Company born?
The idea was fuelled from a macroeconomic trend and from red-tape in the private sector. Back in Sweden in 2009, it was not easy to set up as a freelancer, but there was a high demand from businesses for flexible talent, and a lot of people with cool ideas – what was lacking was a way of letting them interact in a simple (cool) way.
Why is your solution so relevant today?
Because of macroeconomics, culture and technology. Companies demand specialised talent when they need it and more of it during busy times, miles away from the traditional permanent employment structure. Culturally, the millennial generation is drawn towards flexible working for several companies at the same time. Most importantly perhaps, these two aspects are enabled by the development of technologies like Cool Company’s.
Tell us about the journey of Cool Company from being founded to where it is today?
The journey was in the beginning completely focused on the freelancer service but has pivoted to now also include a full range of services for businesses working with freelancers. Of course, the high interest from investors has sparked a lot of technical innovation and more recently an international outlook which brings us up to date (and me into the picture).
What is your personal background?
I moved over to study in the UK in 2012 and subsequently started my career at a recruitment agency in the strategy and management consulting space. There I gained first-hand experience in the power of flexible working and came in contact with Cool Company which was a no-brainer concept.
What differences do you see between the Swedish and UK markets?
Apart from the over politeness and the tea drinking? There are many differences. Sweden is very forward-thinking in some ways whilst the UK is ahead of the curve in others; the pulse and tempo of Stockholm vs. London is quite striking actually.
Like any company entering a new market, applying an existing product can be challenging. But I’d like to think that coming from Sweden with a different perspective gives us a competitive advantage within the UK market.
What are your future goals?
For Cool Company UK, we want to be the obvious one-stop-shop for businesses and freelancers to simplify the way they interact. My personal ambition is to practise as we preach and to build a team that can work flexibly from wherever they are in the country and reach our goal.
What is the best part of your job?
The collaborative environment means a lot to me. Cool Company consists of a lot of different individuals with a wide range of specialist talent, but all working towards the same goal. Also, of course, it’s rewarding to see when a freelancer goes from idea to entrepreneur or a business being able to use more flexible staff thanks to Cool Company.
This article was originally published in the February 2019 issue of our Member magazine, The LINK. Read the full magazine here.