It’s a busy day for meeting productivity platform Do.
The San Francisco-based company said today it has raised $2 million in seed funding. Plus, it is announcing its integration with Microsoft Office 365.
But, as the name suggests, Do’s purpose in life is to increase productivity in meetings, so being busy is what it does best.
In other words, CEO and founder Jason Shah — a former product manager at Yammer — told me via email, “We end meeting hell.”
And meeting hell is apparently a big market. The company estimates there are about three billion meetings held every year in corporate America, many of them at less than peak productivity. To get more done, Do said over 5000 organizations are currently Do-ing, including Costco, Domino’s, and some parts of the U.S. government.
Do offers meeting notes, file sharing, task assignments, sharing of meeting summaries, and other meeting-oriented tools connected to existing productivity software.
Shah pointed to Cotap, an enterprise mobile messaging company. Before a meeting, agenda items are put into Do, where Cotap CEO Jim Patterson reviews them and leaves comments so the meeting’s business has been pre-filtered.
A “timer in Do keeps them on track” as to how much time is left in the meeting, Shah said. Do’s followups “ensure things get done afterwards, and the meeting is posted for the whole company to transparently see.”
The Office 365 integration is important, he said, because Do is “the first major startup integration with Microsoft Office 365,” which is going to help Microsoft “remain relevant in the cloud + mobile world.” Do is already integrated with Google Apps and Evernote.
Founded in late 2013, the company initially launched its product last summer with backing from Salesforce, SherpaFoundry, and SherpaVentures. The new funding, which brings the total raised thus far to $2.4 million, will be used to expand the team and expand the product, including integration with team communication software Slack and development of a premium enterprise version.
But this Salesforce-backed Do.com is not the same as a previous, Salesforce-based Do.com that was focused on social task management.
This “is an entirely separate company,” Shah told me.
“Salesforce shut down Do.com in late 2013,” he noted, adding that ReDo Inc., “a completely separate and unaffiliated company, acquired the domain name from them after all of that happened and launched our first and only product, which is focused on meetings, in July 2014.” Salesforce is also an investor in the new Do.
Of course, getting more things done in meetings has been a goal since humans first paused from hunting long enough to figure out where they should head next.
These days, Shah said, “our biggest competitor [for running productive meetings] is good old paper and pencil.”
On the software front, he pointed to the use of core productivity suites like Google Apps and Microsoft Exchange for running productive meetings.
Other meeting aids, he said, include “note-taking tools (Google Docs, OneNote, Evernote), task management tools (Asana, Trello, Wunderlist), web-conferencing tools (WebEx, GoToMeeting, Hangouts), calendars (Google Calendar, Microsoft Outlook / Sunrise), file-collaboration products (Dropbox, Box), and general communication tools (email, Slack, Yammer).”
But Do says it can improve productivity by being singularly focused on the task.
The seed round investors included New Enterprise Associates (NEA), Slow Ventures (Dave Morin and Kevin Colleran), Nas of Queensbridge Venture Partners, Zynga founder Mark Pincus, Chegg cofounder Aayush Phumbhra, Cotap CEO and former Yammer Chief Product Officer Jim Patterson, and other angels.