Microsoft today announced it has acquired people analytics startup VoloMetrix. The company said it plans to integrate the organizational analytics technology into Office 365. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.
The enterprise analytics space is a quickly growing market. Companies are interested in determining how best to improve their workers’ day-to-day effectiveness, both to improve employee happiness and to boost productivity for the whole business. The thinking is that if technology can objectively measure how we work and provide personalized feedback, we can learn to better prioritize our time.
Microsoft describes Seattle-based VoloMetrix as “a pioneer and leader in organizational analytics.” VoloMetrix’s software analyzes calendar and email data to gauge the effectiveness of employees within companies.
Here’s an example of what VoloMetrix can do, from our coverage last year:
In the context of sales, VoloMetrix can show the time employees spend with customers, the cost of selling to customers, the reach of individual salespeople, the network of people salespeople know at specific accounts, and other metrics that can typically be hard to calculate. To some extent, that puts VoloMetrix in a category of next-generation sales tools like RelateIQ, which Salesforce bought this summer.
Microsoft plans to leverage VoloMetrix’s experience, technology, and track record in enterprise analytics. In fact, the company says VoloMetrix will be helping improve the analytics tech in Office 365, specifically in Delve Organizational Analytics, an early preview program for which is slated to launch “within the next month.” It’s a no-brainer: Like VoloMetrix’s software, Microsoft’s Delve Organizational Analytics tells businesses how their employees are spending their time.
Microsoft wants to move fast. The Office 365 service will hit general availability “by the end of this calendar year,” though it’s not clear how much of VoloMetrix technology will be included in the initial release.
“Microsoft has a huge vision to reinvent productivity and a set of assets in Office 365 that are fundamental to how work gets done,” VoloMetrix cofounder and CEO Ryan Fuller said in a statement. “By joining them we will be able to continue to pursue our shared mission and have impact at a staggering global scale. We believe joining forces with Microsoft will be a huge win for our customers as we provide even better solutions going forward. Over the coming months, you can expect to hear more from us about new capabilities we will be rolling out, new investments in our partner eco-system and more.”
In April 2013, VoloMetrix raised $3.3 million in series A funding from Shasta Ventures. In October 2014, the startup announced a series B funding round with Shasta Ventures and Split Rock Partners for $12 million.