HuddleUp: Our Thesis

Building an AI-based team culture platform enabling Managers to build outstanding teams!

HuddleUp is an all-in-one people success platform that helps managers understand their teams’ experience in real-time & provides insights to prevent burnout & eventually attrition.

HuddleUp aims to be the digital workspace for hybrid teams bringing the key elements of performance & wellbeing together to develop effective managers, highly engaged employees & top-performing organizations. In order to achieve improved performance and productivity, the underlying factors of EQ and personal communication requirements to be assessed and taken into consideration. Mere task allocation and accomplishment measurement wouldn’t solve for continuous attrition and productivity simultaneously — HuddleUp intends to become the platform that brings significant organizational efficiency while considering human-level factors.

Our Stance

At Huddle, we have been tracking how organizations have been transforming their working method, and as a result, are bullish on innovation in the employee engagement & management space. With remote working & distributed workforce, managers & HR leaders are facing the biggest challenge of keeping a continuous feedback channel and building relationships with their teams, giving HuddleUp a large untapped market to cater to.

We have been working with the team since their early days and have witnessed strong execution capabilities in the founding team. The current version of the product is driven by the strong user and client feedback enabling it to be as contextual to the current and upcoming requirements needed for the future work. As we continue to evolve with the team on the execution of the plans set forth, we endeavor on developing a globally competitive product & emerging as the key player in this space.

Nature of the Target Market

COVID-19 has fundamentally rejigged the way we work; remote working spaces & distributed workforces are the new normal. The way we as a society have adapted to hybrid operations during the pandemic has shattered antiquated assumptions about work design & functionality. Naturally, it is getting increasingly vital for organizations to keep their workforce highly motivated & organized while attracting & retaining the right talent in the current labor market. COVID-19 has thus highlighted the importance of the Talent Management Software (TMS) space, across multiple sectors — According to a report by Mordor Intelligence, the global talent management software market is projected to grow from $7B in 2021 to $13B in 2028 at a CAGR of 9.4% in the forecasted period.

Talent Management Software (TMS) refers to a workforce management platform that involves performance management, strategic hiring & employee development. It enables organizations to track and manage their employees by setting goals, identifying and closing skill gaps, providing personalized development plants, and facilitating appraisals. A TMS platform provides employers with the tools to accurately manage, evaluate, and compensate based on employee performance. This enables organizations to foster a culture of career development and improve the overall performance of the employees. Owing to this, TMS finds extensive applications across the banking, financial services and insurance (BFSI), healthcare, information technology (IT), retail, and manufacturing industries.

As organizations & HR professionals increasingly adopt SaaS platforms for automating scouting, identifying & acquiring new talents from the talent pools, while retaining the existing talent — going forward, we believe that the increasing penetration rate of cloud-based platforms, along with the adoption of mobile-based personnel management systems, will be key drivers of growth in the TMS market. Technological advancements such as the deployment of Machine Learning & Artificial Intelligence (ML / AI), alongside the growing need to replace traditional employee engagement & retention methods will further serve as growth inducing factors for this space.

Early-mover solving a large problem

Post pandemic, human-centric work design, characterized by flexibility and empathy, makes employees feel more empowered and increases their productivity and engagement. It also enables organizations to be more responsive to customer demand, more resilient to disruptions, and more productive. It can also reduce a range of costs — from real estate and travel to employee attrition.

HuddleUp is solving the key pain points felt by hybrid organizations/managers —

  • Attrition & loss of productivity – Managing remote/hybrid teams is the biggest challenge with the right visibility of productivity & wellbeing to drive people’s growth.
  • Disengagement & Burnout – Employees tend to burn out more due to lack of work visibility, no sense of belonging, excessive collaboration & loneliness (69% of remote workers are experiencing burnout across the globe).
  • Manager Enablement – The accountability of managing people’s success has shifted to Team Managers since they drive the maximum impact (70% of the variance in engagement is caused solely by Managers) but they currently lack the support system.
  • Traditional Tools – The current set of tools/platforms to manage performance & engagement were designed for traditional ways of working with a focus on HRs to drive.
  • In reality, distributed work management needs an altogether different approach with one single workspace & asynchronous communication at its core.

Why Huddle Invested in HuddleUp

At Huddle, we believe that one of the cornerstones of any successful organization is the core team behind the wheel. In the case of HuddleUp — The founders are seasoned professionals working at the intersection of product development & B2B Sales.

Although there are a few existing solutions attempting to improve productivity via defining OKRs and tracking task accomplishment, they lack the factors of ​​human-centric work design, characterized by flexibility and empathy, in today’s hybrid organizations. Compared on a global level, HuddleUp has a few notable competitors, namely, Culture Amp, OfficeVibe, and TinyPulse. However, in neither of those instances, the product suite overlaps with HuddleUp. None of the given competitors is attempting to solve for both qualitative and quantitative drivers related to employee engagement as well as productivity simultaneously. HuddleUp is one of the top solutions that can learn the emotional quotient, wellness, and burnout of an individual which proportionately impacts employee efficiency, productivity, and retention in an organization.

HuddleUp started operations in January 2021 and has since then consistently reiterated and developed the current suite of products, whilst achieving amazing traction —

  • Live with 22 clients including the likes of MPL, InstaMojo, Riskcovry & StepSetGo
  • 60% M-o-M growth
  • Free trial to conversion rate at ~80%
  • Launched self-serve beta Slack app to get global traction. 500+ companies registered with 150+ active users
  • Average response rate of 82% based on chat conversations with 4000+ employees (significantly higher than any existing survey solutions)

The current offerings of HuddleUp extend to — Getting an understanding of what the team feels (Check-Ins), Alerting Managers before burnout strikes, Nudging Managers to drive action, and Supporting two key actionable components that drive motivation & prevent burnout. In the longer run, HuddleUp will collaboratively utilize qualitative and quantitative metadata to reduce attrition, improve employee engagement, drive managerial decisions, and optimize organizational output.

We are delighted to have partnered with HuddleUp at the start of their journey to lead the employee success space in India and are equally excited for what lies ahead.

Pre-Seed + Seed Investments

RocketFuel x Huddle

Recent developments such as the SEBI Circular surrounding revamped ESG and Sustainability reporting are a welcome addition, encouraging large-scale enterprises to adopt tech solutions that aid in carbon reduction, ESG compliance, and Climate Education.
Carbon (Dioxide) is one of the building blocks of all organisms on Earth, such that it allows Earth to hold it’s energy. Carbon Sequestration is the process of capturing and storing atmospheric carbon dioxide. It is one method of reducing the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere with the goal of reducing global climate change.   There has been growth in startups working on carbon capture/tech sequestration that capture CO2/ GHGs and utilize them to create value-added products and/ or sell offsets on exchanges.
Given the large depth in climate finance required, emerging forms of climate finance will be important for us to consider. For example, Refi (Regenerative Finance) is a movement focusing on the power of blockchain and web3 to address climate change, support conservation and biodiversity, and create a more equitable and sustainable financial system.
Energy storage and management for mobility & transport use cases have observed strong investor traction historically, and we believe this trend will continue in the next 3-5 years. This includes Electric vehicles as a category.

Agriculture has vast potential with respect to climate change. Building agri-food supply chain efficiencies will be very important to reduce post-harvest food losses. Hence, solutions that use technology to reduce food losses from farm-to-folk or provide cold-chain infra would be relevant to consider. 

 

Additionally, precision agriculture will be crucial to increasing farm yields, but the sector is vast ranging from farm advisory to Agri inputs to IoTs and deep tech hardware solutions. Hence, we will opportunistically look at this theme to scout good startups.