Almost a year ago, our team was in Manchester, England, taking part in a big internal communications conference. At that moment, of course, none of us could have imagined that only two months later we would be back in Estonia, sitting in our home offices and facing completely new challenges.
We started the new year 12 months ago with a visit to Kuku radio, where we were the first guests of the new season of “Restart”, a radio program about the Estonian start-up scene.
In February, we received an investment of 160,000 euros through Nordic Angel Program (NAP4) organized by EstBAN. A program among 60 start-ups was held in the end of 2019, and we were selected to be the winners to receive the investment. A total of 31 investors contributed to our vision. We are extremely grateful for this investment! By the way – our investors are informed about our activities through their very own special GuavaHR investor workspace.
In March, when the first wave of coronavirus hit Estonia, we quickly managed to take the bull by its horns. We decided to give our product to everyone who wants or needs it for free for 4 months so that there would be clear communication between employers and employees during and after the crisis. More than 90% of the companies that joined us in the spring of 2020 are still with us today.
In the second half of the month we invited everyone to participate in a free crisis communication webinar, where Ilona Leib, a crisis communication expert and head of the communication company PR Partner, spoke. There were several hundred participants and they could all ask Ilona their questions. We also wrote a summary post on the webinar, which is still relevant in today’s situation: Avoid social media when communicating with employees, inform them every day and check for information.
In June, our brand new website was launched – the same one where you are currently reading this post – designed by the talented and smart Paula Repp.
In August, we started our long-planned collaboration with the University of Tartu and Andero Uusberg to conduct an extensive study of employee engagement and the factors that shape it. The goal of the cooperation is to create an employee engagement monitoring system in 2021, which could be then used by all customers of the GuavaHR internal communication platform.
The 2020 Clearbox Consulting Employee Apps Report was published in September: this more than 400-page report analyzes, compares and highlights the 23 best employee apps around the world. All of these platforms have been selected keeping in mind the companies with firstline workers.
Much to our delight, GuavaHR was also chosen as one of those 23 platforms. You can study and purchase the report here: The buyers’ guide to employee apps.
In September, we began our modest world conquest: we scored our first international client, a company based in Lithuania. We also started working towards the Scandinavian market and added two new languages to our environment: Finnish and Swedish. Today, the GuavaHR environment can be used in 8 languages.
In October, we conducted a feedback survey among our key customers about our product, satisfaction and future developments. We also asked what our customers are most proud of in their GuavaHR environment and how the success of internal communication is assessed. We wrote more about this in our blog post, which you can read here: What makes a company proud of its internal communication? The results of the GuavaHR customer survey.
Finally, we asked respondents a particularly important question: how likely are our customers to recommend GuavaHR to their colleagues in the same field? This question was answered on a 10-point scale and received an average response of 9.0.
In November, Estonian HR managers conference titled “New Reality” was held. For that, we hosted two webinars from our side: one on our cooperation with the University of Tartu, where Sille-Liis Männik, the project manager of the study, spoke, and the other on the implementation of new technology and what HR managers fear the most about it.
December started with two more good news for GuavaHR. The work started in September towards the Finnish market paid off, as the first Scandinavian company started to use GuavaHR for their internal communication. In the second half of the month we moved towards the South – we were joined by the first Latvian company, with employees located in six countries.
Although during the year we added dozens of new features to the environment including calendar, wellness pulse survey and document management; before Christmas Eve, we surprised our customers with the feature they were asking for most in our feedback survey in October.
The summaries made on the last day of the year showed that we have grown by 500% during this year. It’s nice to finish the year on this high note. A big thank you to all our customers: thanks to you, we are able to write this post! We’d also like to thank our investors and supporters, with whose help we have been able to bring our vision to life this year.
GuavaHR team wishes you carefree communication! May your company’s internal news be like your guavas this year: fresh and good. Have a wonderful New Year!