Aerotime strives to continually optimize employee calendars

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Making time for focused, undistracted work is a challenge not only for employees who face an increasing flood of notifications, but also for teams and companies as a whole. One source estimates the cost of “lost” work at $650 million a year, not only because productivity losses result in longer working hours, but also because they can lead to a lack of engagement. According According to the October 2021 Asana Work Index, people spend more than five hours a week on busy work, including duplicating tasks and waiting for status updates.

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The drive to improve productivity is fueling an entire industry of startups, each claiming to offer a superior alternative to the traditional list-and-calendar approach. Routine combines tasks with notes and a diary. Amy changes the traditional calendaring formula with team-centric features. Get upanother scheduling application that uses a mechanism to automatically adjust the workweek.

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But Piyush Narvani believes that his task organization startup, Aerotime, has the potential to break through a saturated market. A graduate of AY Combinator, Aerotime automatically combines appointments using an algorithm to recommend optimal appointment times.

“Aerotime started with the realization that we end up wasting a lot of time due to massive context switching with poorly scheduled meetings and no prior planning for the week… The ‘meeting burden’ in a company is very culture dependent and the optimizing product has to think not only about engineering planning, but also about managing cultural expectations that vary greatly from one company to another.” Narvani told TechCrunch in an email interview. “Thanks to Seneca’s philosophy, Paul Graham’s creator and manager thesis, and James Clear’s book Atomic Habits…we realized how good engineering and design can solve this problem with little to no change in user workflows.”

Aerotime

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Image credits: Aerotime

Both Google Calendar and Microsoft Outlook can automatically suggest meeting times as well as “focus times” or segments of the day for more intensive work. But Narvani and another co-founder of Aerotime, Dhruv Goel, argue that Aerotime goes a few steps further with automatic replies for declined appointments, agenda recommendations, and the ability to reschedule appointments on behalf of the user.

Narvani spent several years at Amazon Web Services as a Senior Software Engineer. Goel is a former Senior Product Manager at LinkedIn.

“Aerotime is unique for two reasons,” explains Narvani. “First, it decides for the team. The team has a variety of creators such as engineers and designers; manager; and one or two functional managers. A product that creates amazing workflows for one group of users but breaks for another won’t work in these conditions. Secondly, Aerotime… provides uninterrupted space on the calendar, prioritizes important tasks over urgent ones, and gets the job done.”

Beyond the basics, Aerotime, which integrates with Slack, reviews existing meetings to recommend the best structure for daily meetings and offers shortcuts for scheduling tasks that can be placed on the desktop. Upcoming features will focus on analytics and goals to “set realistic expectations” and “improve discipline every week,” Narvani said.

“Everyone wants to juggle appointments, but it has its own nuances — for example, in the morning hours, most people don’t like to have meetings, or after meetings with each other, we need buffer time to recharge, which can be different for people,” Narvani said. “Aerotime is slowly improving to better handle these options in our recommender. Aerotime also strives for the highest ratio of task creation to completion, and to that end, we try to recommend the best time to post tasks based on several factors such as “past task execution” behavior.

Aerotime

Image credits: Aerotime

During the closed beta, Aerotime was able to recruit 70 teams, including companies like NextDoor and Swiggy. The commercial offer was no doubt facilitated in light of the evidence that performance plummets during business hours increaseeven when it becomes less clear whether technologies improve performance.

For Aerotime, the focus in the near term is to address any shortcomings as the platform transitions to the public release. To date, the startup has raised $2 million from Sequoia Capital India, Nexus Venture Partners, SOMA Capital and several angel investors.

“The pandemic has led to remote work, and developer productivity has further declined as the number of Slack requests and meetings increased,” Narvani said. “This resulted in more alignment work and more context switches, as well as reduced deep work time and actual code submission time. With a broader technology slowdown, hiring is slowing down. At the same time, employee productivity becomes an extremely important indicator that needs to be monitored and improved. Aerotime’s core idea of ​​saving time through better prioritization and better planning adds a lot of value to this.”


Credit: techcrunch.com /

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