Sometimes I get jealous of people who work hourly wages, especially when I hear words like "overtime" and "time and a half." But then I realize that having a salary is pretty awesome. It is much better knowing exactly how much I will be taking home every month, for planning and all that. Plus, I don't have to worry about not being able to pay my rent if there is somehow less work one month.
Plus, I have to imagine that employers like it too, for much the same reason. There's no doubt about how much will be paid out and there is no headache inducing scheduling to work out.
For companies that do have their hourly workers, I imagine it can get pretty hectic trying to figure out when everyone worked, and how much, and then getting in touch with those workers to make sure they are on the same page. That is where thisCLICKS, the company behind business software products When I Work and WageBase, comes in.
ThisCLICKS has now raised $4 million in Series A funding, the company announced on Wednesday. The money, which is the first outside investment in thisCLICKS, came from E.ventures, Greycroft and Arthur Ventures.
"Being bootstrapped, we've had a lot of projects in the hopper that we just haven't had the resources to execute on," thisCLICKS CEO Chad Halvorson told me. "In the short term, we will be adding more engineers and marketing people to make that happen. In the longer term, we have some interesting partnerships and strategic integrations planned."
It will also be used to expand the company's current offerings, and develop tablet versions of When I Work and WageBase for Android and iPad.
The St. Paul, Minnesota-based thisCLICKS is a mobile technology company that offers two products that help transfor the way businesses schedule, communicate and coordinate attendance with hourly employees.
The first product was When I Work, which allows business to schedule and communicate with its employees. It uses integrated technology from mobile phones, text messages, email, and social media.
Just this past fall, thisCLICKS introduced its second product, called WageBase, which uses mobile technology to track time, attendance and payroll for hourly employees. It is designed to coordinate with When I Work to allow hourly employees to clock in and out of shifts from a mobile device, while enforcing scheduled shifts using GPS location.
The idea behind both products is to make it easier for businesses to schedule, and keep track of, their hourly employees.
For example, a coffee shop will use 'When I Work' to schedule and communicate with their employees about the work schedule. The manager of the coffee shop will setup the schedule, make sure they have the right people at the right time, and then publish the schedule to staff — which will alert them about the schedule via text message, email, smartphone, Twitter, or even Facebook.
Also, when someone calls in sick, the manager can instantly find a replacement for the shift. When I Work will find all available and qualified employees and notify them via text asking them to pick up the shift. The first employee to reply gets the shift. It's all automatic. No more scrambling to find people to come in at the last minute.
Employees can text things like "Do I work on Friday" and 'When I Work' will instantly reply back with their schedule for Friday. They can also request to trade shifts with coworkers from their iPhone or Android, which, makes employee-to-employee coordination easier.
The company puts design first, Halvorson said.
"We believe business software should be easier, smarter and more refined. We believe that business software doesn't have to suck," he told me. "We intend to be the number one cloud platform for businesses to coordinate and communicate with their hourly employees."
Founded in 2010, thisCLICKS says that is has experienced double digit growth each month over the last year. The company is now used by 3,000 companies around the world, including The UPS Store, Aspen Snowmass, 1-800-GOT-JUNK, and SoundCloud. A total of 200,000 employees are now using When I Work and WageBase, mostly in the US, Canada, UK, Europe and Australia.
Customers pay for products on a monthly basis on a subscription model.
"Our customers save a lot of time when they use our products. Our products significantly reduce the amount of time that is normally required to do staff scheduling for a company," said Halvorson.
"On average for every 20 employees, the manager saves 4-6 hours per week when they use our product. They don't have to fuss with the schedule as much and spend less time communicating with staff about it."
(Image source: http://thisclicks.com)