The cloud HR solutions startup Zenefits is edging further into the Fortune 500 business market today with the launch of two free management tools generally reserved for larger enterprises.
Zenefits for Managers is a tool that will allow managers within an organization to make HR changes on their end rather than waiting for HR or CEO approval. These are things like adding new hires, changing job titles and bumping up salaries.
Zenefits will also start providing executives with access to business intelligence reports. Called Zenefits Business Intelligence, those using the platform will have the ability to filter workforce data such as compensation, employee headcount and turnover in real-time.
This product aims to help reduce inequalities and give executives in different offices some insight on how their department compares.
Zenefits said it originally built these tools for internal use five months ago. The two-year-old startup has been going through some growing pains, nearly doubling in size from 500 to 1,000 employees in the first half of this year. It has hired a few high-profile execs, including Yammer CEO David Sacks and built out several new locations, including a recent expansion in Phoenix, Arizona.
But that kind of momentum started making it harder for Zenefits CEO Parker Conrad to make all the decisions or tell board members how things were going in different sections of the company.
“It was impossible for me to give permissions for every raise, every hire,” he said. Zenefits for Managers allows Zenefits users to delegate those permissions and offer real-time insights from each department.
“Before I would have to say [to the board] let me get back to you. Now I pull up in Zenefits and say ‘let’s compare the account management team and see if that’s flattened out and see that compared to the team in San Francisco.’ Basically, I can look at everything through that lens in just seconds,” Conrad said.
Workday is a business analytics platform that offers a similar approval workflow and company insights, but for larger companies – it counts Yahoo and Adobe within its roster of clients. According to Conrad, the problem with Workday is that it defines permissions by a particular role. “There’s too much complexity there,” he said.
It’s also costly. While Workday does not disclose its pricing model, product sales are how it makes its money. Zenefits has traditionally offered free HR services to a core of small and mid-sized businesses, making its money on third-party insurance offerings. Conrad believes his platform can now take on Workday in the same way it has taken on traditional HR operations – by offering this service for free to a growing base of mid-sized and larger businesses.
“If you’re a 10 person company you don’t need this, if you are a 50 person company you might think it’s cool, but to a 1,000 person company this is essential,” Conrad said. “This will really help us with that space of 500-1,000 [employees].”
Here’s a bit more about how Zenefits for Managers works: