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Pella Corporation Named a 2023 World’s Most Innovative Company by Fast Company

Improving employee wellness and productivity is top of mind for employers fighting to outpace hiring and retention needs in today’s challenging labor market. One window and door manufacturer in rural Iowa is blazing new trails for employee wellness initiatives, even landing a coveted spot on Fast Company's list of World’s Most Innovative Companies for 2023. The legacy brand, Pella Corporation, was recognized for its innovative approach to improving productivity and enhancing workplace wellness for its nearly 10,000 employees. 

“We are so proud to be named as one of the most innovative companies in manufacturing,” said Nicolle Picray, Sr. Manager of Public Relations and Talent Brand Communications for Pella. “This recognition is a testament to the combined efforts of our team to innovate across all areas of our organization, from product to process, and our commitment to pursuing a better way for each other and our customers.” 

Pella is reinventing its workplace strategy to meet the needs of a changing manufacturing workforce. Last year the company introduced innovations in robotics, voice-directed work, and began testing flexible scheduling. All of these efforts are designed to improve the well-being of team members both inside and outside of the workplace. 

The company turned traditional scheduling techniques on their head by creating more flexible schedules that improve consistency in overtime requirements, time off and a better work-life balance. The change improved employee retention by over 50% and allowed long-serving employees to scale back their hours while retaining full benefits. The addition of flexible schedules also attracted more talent enabling Pella to increase its manufacturing workforce by 45% over the last two years.

Additionally, Pella looked to eliminate complexity and repetitiveness on the production floor by introducing custom robotics that reduce cognitive load and simplify decision-making. Employees who were once manually sanding wood window and door frames, for example, were able to move into less physically demanding roles for equal or higher pay. Pella also brought voice-directed picking to the production floor, leading to a 90% reduction in training time, maximized productivity and a reduction in employee stress.

“We believe by taking a holistic, innovative approach to the workplace environment, we are well-positioned for the future while remaining steadfast on delivering a workplace that focuses on the wellness of our people,” said Picray. 

The World’s Most Innovative Companies provides both a snapshot and a road map for the future of innovation across the most dynamic sectors of the economy. This year’s list honors businesses that are making the biggest impact on their industries and culture as a whole - ultimately thriving in today’s ever-changing world. This is the second consecutive year Pella has been recognized by Fast Company for innovation. The company was most recently named No. 8 on the list of Most Innovative Design Companies.  


About Fast Company 

Fast Company is the only media brand fully dedicated to the vital intersection of business, innovation, and design, engaging the most influential leaders, companies, and thinkers on the future of business. Headquartered in New York City, Fast Company is published by Mansueto Ventures LLC, along with our sister publication Inc., and can be found online at www.fastcompany.com. 

About Pella Corporation

Pella Corporation designs and manufactures windows and doors for residential homes and commercial applications. The company is headquartered in Pella, Iowa and employs more than 10,0000 people with 18 manufacturing locations and more than 200 showrooms across the country. For more information, visit pressroom.pella.com