Workvivo’s efforts to turn lifeless all-company emails into engaging content for employees is attracting a fresh round of capital from investors.
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Tiger Global, a backer of social media companies Facebook and LinkedIn, led a $16 million Series A funding round for the Ireland-based software technology company. Participation in the round included Frontline Ventures with continued support from Enterprise Ireland. The Series A round follows a seed round late last year, bringing Workvivo’s total funding to just over $17.5 million, according to Crunchbase data.
Workvivo’s internal communications platform enables organizations to share announcements and employee recognition, while offering like-minded community spaces for employees to interact with colleagues in a social media-like setting.
Although many people are working from home during the COVID-19 pandemic, employee engagement has been a long-held concern for companies.
According to Gallup’s most recent State of the American Workplace Report in 2017, 43 percent of U.S. employees worked remotely prior to COVID-19, at least some of the time. And as far back as 2013, Gallup research showed only 13 percent of employees were engaged at work and found that disengagement costs an organization $3,400 for every $10,000 of salary.
However, COVID-19 is making it more important than ever to inform employees about work announcements in a way that also encourages them to ask questions, Workvivo’s co-founder and CEO John Goulding told Crunchbase News.
“When companies send out an email or post something on the internet, it doesn’t come alive,” he said. “However, imagine a social media platform’s look and feel in the way people are used to publishing and digesting content, and that’s how we compare. Workvivo is building the community and amplifying the company’s culture with content that is rich and engaging.”
The platform was also built around alignment of company goals. Employees can post, in an activity feed, about what they are doing and tag one of the company’s goals or objectives, he said.
Goulding and Joe Lennon founded Workvivo three years ago, and are now seeing customers, such as NETGEAR, TELUS International and Cubic Telecom, using Workvivo to engage and unify their employees.
The company’s first sales happened in 2018, leading to a 300 percent growth in 2019, Goulding said.
“Some of the customers came on as early adopters, and now we are expanding their parent companies,” he added. “We are fortunate to be profitable from the start, which is unusual for a company like ours, and it’s been the best validation to have paying customers.”
With the new funding, the company now plans to expand hiring in the United States—it already has employees in California–and to identify a U.S. hub, Goulding said. Workvivo is considering New York City, Boston and California. In addition, the funding will let the company invest in its platform to help scale for businesses of up to 200,000 employees.
Meanwhile, John Curtius, partner at Tiger Global, said Workvivo is in a good position to help companies minimize the risk when having remote employees, while also maximizing the potential of those not working in an office.
“There is a tremendous opportunity to use an enterprise social network platform like Workvivo to both consolidate the communications stack and to address the $54 billion digital workplace market opportunity,” Curtius said in a written statement.
Illustration: Li-Anne Dias
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