By Weronika Pomin, senior marketing & employer branding specialist, and Agata Wojnowska, senior administration manager, VML Enterprise Solutions (formerly Wunderman Thompson Technology Sp. z o.o.).
VML pole



How do we encourage people to work together from the office instead of remotely? What measures are we implementing to foster a welcoming environment in our workplace? Is it necessary for teambuilding activities to be time-consuming, costly, and arranged by external event planners?

Listen to the story of teamwork, atmosphere, flexibility and work-life balance at VML Enterprise Solutions, a leading company specialising in innovative IT solutions for top companies like Coca-Cola, Unilever, GSK, and Ford. In Poland, the firm has a dedicated team of 400 professionals across its Poznan, Katowice, Bydgoszcz, and Wroclaw offices. To build the best experience for our teams, it optimise its offer to attract and retain top talents.

From the beginning, VML Enterprise Solutions had a culture that prioritises employee wellbeing, fosters a sense of community and strives for job satisfaction. Taking care of these elements has helped it to grow… Here is the story, full of best-practice insights.

Begin with research! 

One of the essential elements of wellbeing in the workplace is the office. How do we make sure it is best suited to employees’ needs? By asking questions. 

You can do surveys or in-depth interviews or outsource the research depending on your resources. The results will help you include diverse groups of employees and make their voices heard. Because it’s the people who make a workplace great.  

Since 2017, we have provided our teams with regular surveys regarding our offices. We aim to know how people perceive the space, what they need, and how we can adjust our offer to meet their expectations. Our research, conducted with Workplace, has helped us to better understand our employees and their needs.  

Based on research, we categorised our employees into four types – depending on how often they want to be in the office. Almost 38% of people declared two to three days a week in the office and 39% – less than 1 time a week in the office. Thanks to that, we knew how, and to what needs we could adapt our office.

Don’t get attached. Pivot or adapt. 

Even if you do the research, it is not worth getting attached to the results for a long time. The world is changing dynamically, and the needs of employees are changing with it.

Sometimes, it is worth reviewing strategies. Indeed, the time after a pandemic is a great time to conduct fresh research to understand the new circumstances and determine what employees need to return to the office. Our objective was to create an environment where people would come to the office because they genuinely wanted to, not because they felt obliged to do so. Our approach centred on treating employees with respect and giving them the freedom of choice.

We have successfully implemented a strategy focusing on open and respectful communication with our employees. As a result, our research gave us a comprehensive list of essential features for our office. These include being in a convenient location, accommodating a wide range of needs, and having a welcoming atmosphere that promotes quiet work, social contacts, and hybrid meetings. We have also provided spaces for venting, ample meeting rooms, terraces, and a flexible layout that can be easily rearranged. Additionally, we have paid careful attention to the design of the office and actively involved everyone in shaping it (i.e., asking our people to name meeting rooms). And thanks to our IT department and their technical excellence we could introduce a system of remote connection tools that provides an effective system for hybrid work.

The workplace is not just about décor. Think bigger. 

In the meantime, the world was changing quickly, and new, sometimes hostile, tendencies were appearing. The rise of the ‘Great Resignation’ and ‘Quiet Quitting’ became prevalent. According to the World Health Organization, depression has become the second most common illness worldwide. As we observed the job market and analysed numerous studies (such as the PwC Global Workforce Hopes and Fears Survey 2022 and Gallup Workplace 2022), we could not ignore them. Gallup’s research clearly indicated, “Work doesn’t make people unhappy; the workplace does.” This compelled us to act and ensure our employees’ wellbeing through well-designed spaces and activities promoting their overall wellness.

We identified three critical areas for development: fostering a sense of community, encouraging social interactions within teams, and ensuring that everyone feels acknowledged.

Equal treatment in the workplace. 

The inclusion of our employees is essential to us. We respect all our employees and ensure they feel comfortable in the workplace. Regardless of their preferred work mode, we made it easier for them. Our offices are designed to facilitate communication, ensuring that you feel part of the meeting whether you are physically present or connecting remotely. When we organise development events, we ensure that they are accessible both in the office and to employees remotely relating to them. We remember the details, too – with employees from multiple countries, we make sure that internal communications are bilingual.

Let them be who they are. 

At our company, we believe in letting people be who they are. We don’t have a dress code, and flip-flops in summer are no surprise. We even have mini-integrations with table football, table tennis and other games in our game room for fun and relaxation. And for those who need a break, our chill room is just nearby. Our Poznan office, located on the 15th floor, offers a breath-taking view of Poznan’s panorama, and we encourage employees to bring their families for a tour. We strive to create a friendly and welcoming environment for all our associates. 

We also decided to provide extra holidays for the length of service to recognize our employees and enhance wellbeing. The longer they are with the company, the more days off they have. It’s our way to appreciate their involvement.

See them. Appreciate.

We strongly believe in the importance of recognising and appreciating our employees. We understand that psychological wellbeing is vital in their lives, and being acknowledged and valued is significant. We have established internal communication channels where anyone can publicly express gratitude towards another person. We also empower line managers to appreciate and recognise the demanding work of their subordinates, fostering a culture of acknowledging each other’s contributions daily.

Appreciation is part of open and honest communication. Also, receiving feedback and asking questions can help you grow. That’s why we’ve been training people on giving and receiving feedback from the beginning, ensuring it is part of their day-to-day work.

We honour staff members’ accomplishments in many ways. Among them is the VML The Inspirers programme, which recognises our thought leaders and ambassadors and brings attention to their achievements to benefit the whole organisation. When you look at how your company operates, you will find many opportunities to publicly appreciate your employees –  we recommend starting immediately and watching the results.

Lastly, have fun. 

Any business needs to create an inviting atmosphere. One of the most important ways to do this is through teambuilding events. We must continue to offer opportunities for in-person connections in this age of remote working. How do we do that?

We pay attention to what our employees say. We take their opinions seriously and plan events according to their suggestions. Thanks to them, we’ve designed activities, such as Lego Day for staff members’ children, Appreciation Day, Programmer and Tester Day, board-game evenings, and summertime sports like sailing, tennis, and climbing. The planned events were coordinated by the team members.

We also pay attention to the extras that make office work more enjoyable, including company breakfasts, physiotherapy, or other ‘goodies.’ However, one of our favourite events is One VML Day – when we all get together in the office and share our interests. There are singing lessons, playing instruments, photography, weaving wreaths, self-defence, or planning mountain trips – something interesting every year. These meetings help us get to know each other better, which impacts on the working atmosphere.


The results speak for themselves. According to satisfaction surveys, the majority expressed overall satisfaction with working in our company. In comparison to the prior year, our Employee Net Promoter Score rose significantly. The events we organised received 100% positive feedback in the surveys. These achievements have proved our approach pays off. Our management continues to consult with employee representatives, and we all commit to maintaining this high level of satisfaction in the years to come based on the successful indicators we have achieved.