Robin raises $30M to expand its office booking software as companies roll out hybrid work

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Thanks to the pandemic, teams are more distributed than ever. In some companies, this has led to a rift between line workers and management, the latter of which is usually skeptical about remote work. According to survey from GoodHire, 75% of managers want employees to work in the office, citing potential lack of attention and loss of corporate culture. But in a separate McKinsey poll87% of workers said they would take the opportunity to work remotely if given a choice.

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Mika Remley, CEO Robin, argues that businesses can get their cake and eat it by taking a “hybrid” work route, meaning having employees work in the office for part of the week and remotely the rest of the time. Remley joined Robin after Brian Mewes and twin brothers Sam and Zach Dunn founded a startup to help companies manage office space with booking software.

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“We want C-suite, enterprise, and IT teams to understand that vibrant hybrid workspaces don’t require complex technology or complex deployment plans,” Remley told TechCrunch via email. “Something that resonates with every leader is that our platform removes barriers to office entry and creates a workplace based on choice. When employees have a choice, returning to the office becomes less of an obligation and more of a bond.”

Launched in 2014, Robin started out as a conference room scheduling app. But over the past 8 years, the platform has expanded to handle various aspects of table reservations, room reservations, and guest management. By logging into Robin via the web or mobile device, workers can request rooms, desks and equipment before they arrive at the office. Customers who choose Robin’s guest registration features can use the platform to have visitors submit any documents, such as waivers and non-disclosure agreements, required by office policy.

Robin

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Image credits: Robin

Remli also offers Robin as a way to track office usage over time. On the back, managers can see how people are using different spaces and tap the calculator to calculate the ideal number of seats, tables, and collaboration spaces on a given floor. A newer feature, the “Global Hybrid Trends Dashboard”, shows usage statistics from other companies of the same size, sector, and region, providing benchmarks.

“Robin brings together your loved ones, your team, and the people you meet most to make smart recommendations about when to come to the office and makes scheduling easier by automatically suggesting desks and seats near your colleagues,” Remley said. “Office usage analytics gives administrators insight into who is using the office, when they use it, and which spaces are used the most. As company headcounts increase over time, Robin helps clients understand how to optimize their space for changing times.”

Some workers may not be comfortable with this level of tracking. Robin says he anonymizes usage data by collecting it by room, floor and building. But it’s unclear to what extent the platform does this. We asked Remley for clarification.

In addition to competing with office planning startups such as envoy, Office as well as OfficeRnD, Robin’s main task is to prove that the hybrid job has persistence. According to TinyPulse Research, more than 80% of HR leaders believe that a hybrid configuration is more tiring for employees than telecommuting or working in the office. Some segments of the workforce are less optimistic about hybrid technologies than others. Deloitte recently found that more than half of the women who combine telecommuting and office work “already experience inflexibility in their work arrangements or are concerned that this will happen in the future.” But many of the logistical challenges associated with a hybrid system affect everyone, such as balancing staff coming into the office with staff staying at home.

How an article in Computerworld indicates, hybrid work can become a minefield of injustice, rewarding people who are more able and willing to work in the office. AT Gartner survey59% of female knowledge workers, who are more likely than men to work remotely, according to the survey, believe that office workers will be considered more efficient, while 78% believe that office workers are more likely to work remotely. promotion.

Robin

Image credits: Robin

Remley refutes the notion that hybrid work is doomed to failure. Software like Robin, he argues, can give companies the data they need to develop a work strategy that will satisfy most—if not admittedly all—employees. In any case, the startup had no problem finding customers. Remley says thousands of teams, including those in the military and government, as well as brands like Toyota, Twitter, Mailchimp and Peloton, use Robin to organize their work.

In a vote of investor confidence today, Robin closed a $30 million Series C round led by Tola Capital with participation from Firstmark, Accomplice, Boldstart and Allegion Ventures. Remley says the capital, which has raised more than $59 million for Robin, will be used to develop the platform, expand internationally, and increase Robin’s staff to over 190 people.

“Robin has always focused on the hybrid work experience, knowing that jobs will change in that direction over time. The pandemic has accelerated this shift faster than anyone could have predicted,” Remli said. “As companies focus on getting leaner, hybrid operation is becoming even more attractive as a cost-saving measure. Many of our clients have reduced their presence in commercial real estate over the past two years and we expect this to continue. We do not foresee a wide return to the office in the sense that we used to think about work… Employees do not want this, and even in a recession, a full return to the office does not make economic sense.”


Credit: techcrunch.com /

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