In just a decade since the introduction of the iPhone, our mobile phones have become the dominant technology we all use in our everyday lives. We send messages (text, pictures, video) all day long, every day. It’s no exaggeration to say that the way we communicate with each other has changed fundamentally over the past 10 years.
And so it’s no surprise that the way we work has also changed dramatically. We text and chat with our colleagues and rely less on email and in-person meetings. We work on projects collaboratively and at the same time, not independently and behind closed doors.
But the focus of software innovation for the way we actually work — our core productivity — has been mostly for the benefit of knowledge workers in desk jobs that look a lot like our own in the technology industry. Productivity software is an area that I really love, and over the past few years I’ve invested in software companies like Figma, Quip, and Dropbox that have dramatically advanced how (desktop & laptop) computer-centric workers create, share and collaborate with one another.
What about industries like retail, healthcare and hospitality, where most workers aren’t working on their laptop all day?
Messaging is a behavior that is already happening for most of these teams — but it’s via some awkward mix of text groups and social platforms that aren’t really built to help co-workers be more productive. These approaches are ad hoc, chaotic, and unloved since they blend personal and work lives, and are generally impossible to manage from the employer side of things.
This is why I am so excited to share the news that Greylock has led the Series B in Crew and I have joined the board.
When I met co-founders Danny Leffel and Broc Miramontes, they told me story after story about the people who use Crew to get work done — people on teams who aren’t well served by our traditional computing-centric tools, but still need to communicate and organize with each other to be successful in their own work. Within just a few minutes in that first meeting, I knew we’d found a team we wanted to work with who was on an important mission. Productivity is bigger than helping folks do their desk jobs more efficiency. It’s about everyone, regardless of industry, being on the same page so they can do their jobs better.
The beauty of Crew is that it connects workers in the way they’re already connecting, via messaging. With Crew, everything and everyone is in one app, and colleagues can swap shifts, change schedules, request time-off and coordinate on daily tasks and responsibilities. When you lower friction to participate and communicate — just like our mobile technology has done in the rest of our lives — interactions across team members are simplified, teams stay organized, and people feel more engaged.
High performing teams across the board — from grocery stores to fire departments — are already using Crew to share schedules, cover shifts, and communicate with each other. In just under two years, there are more than 10,000 active organizations sending over 10M work related communications on a weekly basis.
Everyone needs — and deserves — to have technology that can help them work more collaboratively within their teams and do their jobs better. Danny, Broc and the Crew team are building something really important and I’m very happy to be a part of their journey.