WorkSimple Brings New Focus on Social Goals and Engagement

In a market where the term “social” is applied to just about any form of collaboration, where the ability to make comments on web transactions and send email is often (and misleadingly) marketed as social feedback, it can be challenging to find those solutions that truly  reimagine people processes in the context of social technologies, enabling and engaging people in getting work done collaboratively. (Refer to my earlier post for more background on this emerging space, HR’s Role in Getting Work Done: Are You a Driver, Passenger or Pedestrian?”).

Today, one such provider of reimagined people processes launched new functionality intended to broaden its reach in this area.

Social performance platform provider WorkSimple announced today a series of new capabilities to augment employee engagement and cut through the noise to focus on the priorities that matter. The company’s newly released functionality, named Focus Boards, Focus Profiles and Focus Detail, are intended to provide individuals and leaders the ability to create and manage goals in a lightweight, collaborative and easy to manage interface. One of many benefits claimed by WorkSimple is the elimination of the top-heavy complexities of traditional cascading goal paradigms, which are usually out of date long before the annual performance review comes into play. These applications foster transparency and communication across the enterprise, and accelerate engagement for improved results.

It is well understood that today’s business environment requires maximum agility. Goals and priorities shift as business conditions change, and people need the right tools to help them focus on what matters, communicate their priorities and status against their goals, and to engage with individuals across the company for transparency of vision and direction.

At the individual employee level, WorkSimple’s Focus applications are designed to enable employees to quickly and easily create social goals and see how their efforts impact the rest of the organization.

WorkSimple - Focus Boards Release - Focus Detail

At the company level, Focus Boards are meant to provide a single view of all the areas of Focus across the company as well as teams and individuals contributing to those initiatives.

WorkSimple_simple alignment at the company level

WorkSimple, a Cloud-based offering, has three levels of pricing. A very robust freemium model includes functionality for an unlimited number of users across Social Goals™, Team Focus Board, LinkedIn Integration, WorkStory™, Feedback, Recognition and Professional Reputation management. Their Group Edition and Company Edition versions then range from $5 to $9 per user per month and bring additional depth of functionality as needed.

My POV: 

  • The robust Freemium model is available for an unlimited number of users. This may be overly generous in today’s market. It may also be a highly effective Trojan horse into the rest of the WorkSimple suite…time and user feedback will tell.
  • I applaud the WorkSimple offering because I believe this is where the market must move: from HR-centric processes into end-user focused productivity and engagement tools. These applications reflect a fundamentally better way to attract, engage, manage and empower employees across the enterprise.
  • Is WorkSimple a long term solution or a quick fix? At this point I believe it is a strong solution to address the immediate needs of some organizations, with the best fit being those companies of any size that embrace social technologies and seek alternatives to hierarchical processes.

What do you think?  Are you currently using or evaluating social goal or social performance applications?

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3 Responses

  1. Totally heartened by this post, Yvette! Awesome to know that we are tracking with you, as it really is our hope to empower people to work better! You rule. *high five*

  2. Great post, Yvette – it’s really exciting to see how the performance management industry is evolving.

    Is there a type of company that’s more likely to adopt social performance tools? I wonder if there are certain industries, geographies or companies sizes that are leading the way with these new social apps.

    Or any areas where social is still off limits?

    • Thanks for the great questions, Alex. I’d like to know what you and others think. From my research, I’m finding high tech and creative services industries are frequently open to adopting these technologies, as well as smaller organizations of any industry (especially those without formalized HR departments, or where the HR department is essentially the recordkeeping/payroll function.) But the real requirement seems to be an openness about social technologies overall; a true desire for increased transparency across the organization. If an organization is still wondering how to put more controls on what can be entered, shared and viewed in these environments, these applications are not for them right now. Attitudes of “Command and control” need to give way to “open and engage” before we see widespread adoption. Fortunately these tools themselves help foster that cultural shift.

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