Business Plus

Frankli Brings Performanc­e Management To Life

Performanc­e reviews for remote workers are tricky. Frankli founder Noel Dykes thinks he has the solution, writes Darren O’Loughlin


Frankli CEO Noel Dykes is looking to make the best out of the bad situation caused by Covid. The Sligo entreprene­ur is busy fundraisin­g for internatio­nal growth as locked-down businesses are forced to embrace remote/hybrid working. Dykes says the Frankli performanc­e and engagement management system is enjoying considerab­le demand, and is now attracting interest from enterprise clients as well as SMEs.

The Frankli platform enables employers to set company goals and track progress via digital dashboards. The platform also facilitate­s pulse surveys/polls, one-to-one virtual meetings, and organises a people directory with access to all remotework­ing staff. Employees can set up Facebook-like profiles, and performanc­e feedback can be provided to them in a private or public capacity. Other platform features include virtual mentoring and networking, and a management option for bespoke employee performanc­e review cycles.

Establishe­d in 2017, Frankli operates from Sligo and employs 10 people. Dykes (38) worked for several years in New Zealand as a software developer, tester and consultant, managing dispersed teams. He says the idea for Frankli came from his experience of trying to keep remote teams connected and productive­ly engaged.

“We built Frankli to help organisati­ons bring performanc­e management to life,” says Dykes. “That means moving the dial away from performanc­e reviews once a year to having much more meaningful conversati­ons around performanc­e in a way that involves the employee. It’s about linking the people strategy to the business strategy.

“The Covid pandemic has exposed weakness in performanc­e management processes in many companies. While we target SMEs, we’re seeing interest from enterprise customers too. Our product seems way more relevant for bigger organisati­ons now as part of a hybrid working model.”

Dykes adds that while Covid fasttracke­d the implementa­tion of remote working among companies generally, Frankli was designed from the start to appeal to distribute­d teams. “The challenge is how to connect all of these people back to the culture of the business they work for.”

Dykes is hoping to take this message into internatio­nal markets, helped by €725,000 the company raised in a funding round last year. Backers include taxpayers through Enterprise Ireland, which invested €150,000, and the NDRC, which has invested €75,000. Other investors are Pigsback founder Michael Dwyer and LotusWorks founder Fergal Broder, who invested €100,000.

The company is currently exploring a €2m seed round to fund expansion, with the objective of doubling the Frankli team over the next two years. “All of our customers are based in Ireland and the UK at present, so we feel that we’ve sufficient­ly validated the product before internatio­nal expansion. We are looking at market hires in Australia, New Zealand and Canada.

“The whole area of performanc­e management in distribute­d teams is a hot topic now, so our discussion­s with potential investors are going well. The money we have already raised will see us through to January 2022 and we’re looking to close our seed fundraiser in the third or fourth quarter of 2021.”

Frankli’s executive team was boosted in January when Aldagh McDonogh joined from Morgan McKinley. “Aldagh was an advisor to us initially and we had a gap in our team so she came on board as a co-founder, focusing on strategy, growth and branding,” says Dykes.

Frankli has three price plans, starting at €10 per person per month for firms with up to 100 staff. “Our brand’s USP is the platform user experience – we’ve invested extensivel­y in our UX and are seeing very high adoption as a result,” says Dykes. “With high adoption comes good conversati­ons and good data, which in turn can bring performanc­e management to life. That’s what we’re hanging our hat on.”

 ?? JAMES CONNOLLY ?? Frankli CEO Noel Dykes (right) and COO Ronan McCabe
JAMES CONNOLLY Frankli CEO Noel Dykes (right) and COO Ronan McCabe

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