There’s no doubt that 2020 was a challenging year for businesses and employees around the globe. While we celebrate the arrival of 2021, we also celebrate the incredible accomplishments of our customers, our partners, and the ActivTrak team in navigating the challenges brought on by the sudden onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and rapid adoption of remote work models. In doing so, we also learned a lot about ourselves, uncovering key insights that helped our employees, teams, and organization as a whole grow and become more productive and successful.
A Remote-First Organization: How We Became Our Own Case Study
Before the pandemic, ActivTrak had only two remote employees on staff across two states. By the end of December, we were operating with an entirely remote workforce across 15 states and Puerto Rico. We had to learn this new remote work style alongside our customers and users, making us truly all in it together. Using our own product and internal workplace design and productivity expertise, we leveraged key insights, workflows, and management playbooks that not only helped us navigate challenges, but also uncovered opportunities to save costs, revise inefficient processes, optimize our schedules to improve productivity, and prevent employee burnout. And we created these resources that document the process to ensure the community could benefit from our experience:
- How to Use ActivTrak for Product and Development Teams
- How to Use ActivTrak for Sales and Support Teams
- Remote Work Policy Template
Stay tuned for more department-specific and role-specific guidance and best practices coming in 2021.
With remote teams top of mind given the sudden, massive adoption of working from home due to COVID-19, our product and engineering teams made it even easier for customers to quickly gain productivity insights and share ActivTrak data across their organizations – wherever work was happening.
We strive to provide an easy-to-use solution that provides productivity insights quickly so our customers can improve business outcomes. With this goal in mind, many of our product enhancements were geared towards improvements in how we collect, categorize, and visualize user activity and productivity data including:
- Team Productivity Pulse – An at-a-glance dashboard providing real-time productivity metrics across individuals and teams throughout the day.
- Intelligent Auto-Classification – Quickly understand the context of individual and team work and save hours of manual effort with our crowd-sourced intelligent auto-classification of websites and applications.
- Group-Based Activity Classification – Activities that are productive for one team may not be considered productive for others. Our group-based classification makes it easy to customize productivity settings as needed for different teams.
- Team Viewer Role – This read-only role enables managers and team or project leaders to view the data for the groups they belong to, but not other individuals or teams.
Integrations and Data Sharing
The introduction of our ActivConnect add-on made it possible (and easy) for customers to use and share ActivTrak data in new ways including:
- Bringing ActivTrak data into business intelligence platforms such as PowerBI, Tableau, and Google Data Studio with prebuilt report templates to gain insights quickly.
- Accessing and exporting ActivTrak data to correlate it with data from other systems, or running queries directly via Google BigQuery.
- Sharing ActivTrak data via Microsoft Teams with prebuilt templates to summarize productive time, most used apps and websites, and more.
Supporting and Empowering Customers
In addition to evolving our product to meet new business demands, we also ramped up support for our customers and users through various programs and initiatives including:
- Expanded Support Hours– We expanded our support hours, chat support capabilities in-app, and grew our Customer Success team, including the addition of Spanish-language support. Visit our Help Center for more information or to chat with a live representative. We’re always here to help.
- Expertise – The ActivTrak Productivity Lab was launched to help organizations around the world optimize around productivity. Our dedicated team of experts in workforce productivity, information technology, and data science can help you better leverage data around people, process, and technology to unlock your productivity potential. In case you missed it, here’s a recent blog post from the lab: From Data to Decisions: Workplace Productivity 101
- Education – We hosted over 20 virtual trainings and created numerous educational resources to help you better manage a remote workforce, boost productivity, understand and use workforce analytics, improve operational efficiency, and more.
Behind the Scenes: How Our Team Had Fun Along the Way
We’ve always had a fun culture at ActivTrak, but 2020 challenged us to maintain that culture through an abrupt shift to 100% remote work AND during a hyper growth year for our organization. Here are some of the highlights and successful initiatives our HR and leadership teams rolled out that made ActivTrak a great place to work in 2020, earning us a Best in Tech Regional Timmy Award for Workplace Diversity by Tech in Motion and a 4.8/5 star-ranking on top employer review site Glassdoor:
- Employee Growth – We more than doubled our employee headcount in 2020, promoting several employees from within the company and hiring people from 15 states plus Puerto Rico. We believe great employees live everywhere and we’re currently hiring for new roles in 2021! Check out our careers page to learn more and to apply.
- Virtual Hangout Program – In August we started using Donut, an application that randomly pairs you with another employee in the organization for a 30-minute virtual chat. With 167 connections completed, this program has been a great way for new team members to meet others, and for existing employees to get to know colleagues they don’t work with directly.
- Employee Appreciation – Including gift cards to help team members outfit a home workspace, company swag for employees, pets, and newborns, holiday pies from a local business, and more! We also launched an employee feedback program that has guided our roadmap for 2021 employee satisfaction initiatives.
Our entire company stayed connected through virtual happy hours and we were proud that our team rallied around a new charitable giving program with company matching that was introduced to help those in need.
And there’s one segment of the ActivTrak team who had absolutely no complaints about us working from home in 2020: our pets.
Some Final Insights on 2020
We are grateful to our 8,500+ customers, 250,000+ free users, and our robust partner network for their trust and confidence in us, and for the incredible accomplishments along the way including:
- ActivTrak Raises $50 Million in Series B Funding Led by Sapphire Ventures
- ActivTrak Ranked Number 480 Fastest-Growing Company in North America on Deloitte’s 2020 Technology Fast 500™
- ActivTrak Launches Global Managed Service Provider Program
- ActivTrak Wins TrustRadius 2020 Tech Cares Award
- ActivTrak Named PCMag Editors’ Choice for the 2nd Year in a Row
Learn more about our growth and plans for 2021 in this press release.
2021, Here We Come!
It is our mission to continue to develop and deliver tools and expertise to help businesses thrive and fulfill their workforce productivity goals. As remote work trends continue in the new year, companies will need to expand their investment in purpose-built technology that supports the productivity of remote and hybrid teams, and provides new analytics and insights for a new way of working.
No matter where your teams are working from in 2021, we look forward to helping you achieve your business goals with our product enhancements, our Productivity Lab, as well as expanded integrations in ActivConnect.
Here’s to a happy and productive new year!
ActivTrak is a workforce productivity and analytics software company that helps teams understand how people work, whether in-office or remote. Our cloud-based user activity monitoring platform collects and analyzes data and provides insights to help organizations be more productive and operationally efficient. With more than 8,000 customers and over 250,000 users of its free version, ActivTrak’s award-winning solution can be configured in minutes to identify operational bottlenecks, flag operational compliance risks, and provide valuable insights that help employees and employers improve productivity outcomes.