Sonder named 2021 AFR BOSS Most Innovative Technology Company


MEDIA ADVISORY: Embargoed until 15/10/21

CONTACTS: Gabby Webb, Inventium.  (03) 9018 7455

Today, Sonder was honoured to be recognised as one of Australia and New Zealand’s Most Innovative Companies. The prestigious annual list, published by The Australian Financial Review and Boss Magazine, is based on a rigorous assessment process managed by Australia’s leading innovation consultancy, Inventium, in conjunction with a panel of industry expert judges.

Sonder was delighted to be named the most innovative company in the technology category, from over 700 nominated organisations across Australia and New Zealand. The assessment measures a top innovation implemented in the past two years. Specifically, the judges look at how valuable the problem is that the innovation is solving, the quality and uniqueness of the solution, and the innovation’s level of impact.

“It is incredible to have the innovative work we are doing at Sonder recognised, and the value we deliver by supporting the mental health and wellbeing of students and employees,” says Craig Cowdrey, CEO for Sonder. “This is our second win in three years, which highlights our focus on continuous innovation and providing valuable support to the Australian workforce.”

Sonder was acknowledged for its innovative wellbeing model, providing a medically-accredited service that uniquely combines technology with holistic human care. It enables organisations to offer one central springboard for employee wellbeing, health and safety, accessible 24/7 through the Sonder app.

“Inventium is proud to announce the 2021 Most Innovative Companies list in conjunction with AFR. After the enormous impact 18 months (and counting) of a global pandemic has had on the way we live, it's so inspiring to see all the amazing innovations our winners have created to help make our lives better," says Dr Amantha Imber, founder, Inventium.

Inventium also assesses internal elements such as innovation culture, strategy, resources and process, which demonstrate a sustainable and repeatable approach to innovation.

“We listen to our members, as well as our corporate, education and government clients to ensure the service we provide is exceeding their needs. Forward-thinking businesses such as Woolworths, PwC and the Commonwealth Bank have partnered with us to help support their people, along with NSW Health who we’ve engaged this year. Many of Australia’s major universities also trust Sonder to care for their students and staff. Combining our innovative culture with the advice and ideas from our customers gives us a winning formula. It’s why we have a modern, accessible support model that is changing the game in organisational wellbeing and safety,” says Cowdrey.

The full list can be viewed HERE


Key Facts:

  • Mental health issues cost the economy $500 million a day in lost productivity and participation.
  • Only 5% of employees are using traditional wellbeing programs, such as Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs).
  • Early intervention stats: 15x cost increase when treatment delayed. 70% of Sonder members wouldn’t reach out to anyone if it wasn’t for Sonder. 59% of cases are complex (include two or more factors).
  • Sonder offers medically trained, ACHS (Australian Council on Healthcare Standards) accredited human support 24/7.
  • Sonder provides a physical responder network that can get on-site to anyone within 20 mins.
  • Organisations may experience 17x average return on investment for every $1 invested in Sonder.
  • Sonder supports 400,000 members across 40 organisations and almost half of Australia’s universities (via Allianz).


- Ends –



The AFR BOSS Most Innovative Companies list (previously the BRW Most Innovative Companies list) is now in its ninth year. The list ranks the most innovative organisations in Australia and New Zealand, by industry, and is the only national list of its kind. The list is judged and compiled by Inventium – Australia’s leading innovation consultancy. Inventium uses a unique, scientifically proven approach to help organisations grow through innovation. In 2021, the list comprised of ten industry lists, compiled from over 700 nominations.


Inventium is Australia’s leading behavioural science and innovation consultancy. Since 2007, Inventium has helped over 400,000 people become more innovative and more productive at work. Inventium applies the latest findings from science (psychology and neuroscience) to help organisations unlock growth through innovation. Inventium is the official methodology partners of the AFR Most Innovative Companies list and the AFR Best Places to Work List. Inventium is also a proud BCorporation.


For more than 50 years The Australian Financial Review has been the authority on business, finance and investment news in Australia. It has a reputation for independent, award-winning journalism and is essential read-ing for Australia’s business and investor community. The Australian Financial Review is owned by Fairfax Media Limited [ASX:FXJ], a leading multi-platform media company in Australasia.


Sonder is a leading wellbeing and safety company which services around 400,000 eligible members, principally across Australia and New Zealand. Accredited by the Australian Council on Healthcare Standards (ACHS), Sonder’s solution is a technology-driven platform supported by 24/7 safety, medical, and mental health experts.

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