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Parklet is a small-and-simple people operations toolset

I’ve decided to adopt the ‘people operations’ term from Google, Dropbox,  and others in place of ‘human resources’, principally because I don’t think that people are ‘resources’, but also because those companies that adopt the mindset of people operations have significantly happier workforces.

I read that a new startup, Parklet, had won the DEMO Enterprise Conference, following in the footsteps of WebEx, Evernote and Salesforce.

Parklet is building a tool kit for people operations support, relying on a small-and-simple design approach. The first two tools are these:

People —  is a new take on a company directory, but one with a moderate amount of interaction built-in. The orientation is toward two major issues: onboarding new employees by helping them get up to speed about the company history, culture, and people, and supporting interaction around public acknowledgement of help received or work done (‘props’).

This is the user landing page on a fictional company account, JobSpice. Note the interactive timeline that can be use to quickly set up a visualcompany history.

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Each user is made part of the company directory when invited, but can fill in details — like Twitter handle, department,  and so on — on their profile page.

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That info shows on the public profile for others to view, as shown below.

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A tree-form of the company organization can be used to find other people or clarify company structure.

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Pulse is the side of Parklet People that automatically creates a stream of activities, allowing users to get a sense of what is going on across the organization. Below, you can see that 13 new employees have joined JobSpice in the past two months, various folks have been giving others props, and Hannah Collins is a featured employee.

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Workflows — Parklet’s second app is Workflows, a tightly focused task management solution that is loosely coupled with People. Basically, Workflows provides the checklists that are associated with the lifecycles in people operations: hiring, provisioning, reviews, documentation, and at the other end, possibly dealing with issues relating to employee’s leaving the company

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Here, people operations and others can keep track of their tasks related to people, as opposed to other sorts of tasks.

My only quibble here is that if my company was using a solution like Asana or Smartsheets for task management, I might like an integration so that I could see these tasks in my current task client, but  I bet they’ll hear that request frequently.

As the CEO of Parklet, Dane Hurtubise, pointed out in the DEMO presentation, this is only the very beginning of tools that Parklet might roll out for people operations, a point of departure for employee engagement, employee satisfaction, and employee productivity.

I continue to believe that tightly focused and deep applications are the way forward for work management, and Parklet seems to be another entrant taking that road. I will have to follow their progress closely.