Working these days is not what it used to be. To enforce social distancing and slow the spread of the COVID-19 health pandemic, many of us have scrambled from our desks to our homes, we only connect with colleagues and others virtually, and it is too easy to lose sight of our purpose and our strategy in the middle of it all.
But in the great tradition of enterprise IT, this creates an opportunity, and today a startup called Trellis, whose platform helps track, reward and set goal achievement in the workplace, closed a $ 45 million round to help solve some of these issues.
The funding, a Series D, is led by Tiger Global with participation from Frontline Ventures, Founders Fund, Khosla Ventures, Thrive Capital Partners, Fuel Capital and Y Combinator. He values the company at around $ 400 million, CEO and co-founder Jack Altman (whose brother Sam ran Y Combinator and is now at OpenAI…) said in an interview. It has doubled Lattice’s valuation since October 2019, when the startup closed a $ 25 million Series C, also led by Tiger Global.
The healthy increase in valuation is a sign of the times: while the spread of the new coronavirus has strained certain sectors of the tech world (and more generally certain industries such as travel), others have found themselves facing to strong surges in demand. Lattice has increased the number of its own customers to 1,900 companies, up from 1,400 in October (with a size between 50 and 1,500 overall) and Altman says that the number of employees at Lattice, which now numbers around 200, increased at the same rate.
The reason for the good growth? Lattice, along with companies like this, have taken on a key role – that of structuring an organization – at a time when we have lost a lot.
“In March and April, our customers were moving to remote locations and business slowed down a lot,” he said. “Now it’s picked up.”
Indeed, “workplace” has taken on a very different meaning for many of us in these days of COVID-19, but some might argue that as the concept of the workplace expands and is tested, it is more important than ever for individuals to understand how they are doing within it.
Lattice’s product covers an array of tools that harness both the idea of proactive use and more passive data flow, both to help get a feel for how employees are doing, and also to help provide better communication of achieved goals between these employees and their managers.
It includes software for giving and getting feedback and performing reviews, setting goals for employees, giving praise, and getting updates on what people are working on. It also offers integrations with other platforms such as Slack that help communicate ‘wins’ but also track those milestones so that they can be integrated with an analytics engine to facilitate the review process during the process. review period, both for the employees themselves as well as for their managers. .
All of these are great, but even so, they’re probably only scratching the tip of the iceberg when it comes to how productivity can be better managed in the long run using new innovations like artificial intelligence. .
Altman (Jack, not Sam) says he thinks we’re at least five years away from realistically creating AI platforms that can seamlessly track all of our business activities, both in our business applications and in a larger network of digital activities – to provide us with real-time updates on how we are doing, what we are doing well, and also how we could do better.
This is before we determine whether we are ready to accept this kind of concept as useful and not dystopian. Lattice, he added, is definitely interested in this long-term goal, although he continues to create products that can meet performance management as it is known and identified as an area of business today. ‘hui.
Today’s challenges, in any case, are no less massive and already a big change, given the shift that many of us have made to new work environments, which for some will take a long time to complete. go back to “normal” or at least to start. feeling “normal” and routine again.
This is the greatest opportunity for companies like Lattice, which compete not only with other pure-play platforms like BetterWorks or 15Five, but also with those that integrate performance management into larger human resource platforms. like Workday. While the two can coexist for a long time, this means that for a company like Lattice it has both opportunities to continue and grow as a stand-alone service, as well as a service that could potentially be caught up in this trend. of broader consolidation.
“In the migration to a more remote world, the tools available to organizations to help them manage, engage and grow their teams are more important than ever,” said Miles Grimshaw, partner at Thrive Capital, in a statement. “We are excited to further advance the impact of Lattice’s Employee Success Platform. “