Visier raises $125M to power HR analytics with data

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Cloud-based analytics platform Visier, which focuses on human resources (HR) and workforce strategy applications, today announced that it closed a $125 million series E round led by Goldman Sachs at a post-money valuation of over $1 billion. With the investment, Visier joins a small list of HR technology providers that have raised more than $100 million in a single funding tranche.

Visier, whose total capital raised stands at $219.5 million to date, will use the proceeds to support product development, go-to-market expansion, marketing, sales, partnerships, distribution channels, and strategic acquisitions “as they make sense for the business,” CEO Ryan Wong says. He claims that Visier is the first independent vendor of its kind to reach a $1 billion valuation.

Companies are in the midst of digital transformations due to increased demand for better people analytics. People analytics, also known as talent analytics or HR analytics, refers to the analyses that can help managers make decisions about their employees or workforce. While people analytics is a new domain for most HR departments, 70% of company executives cite people analytics as a top priority, according to McKinsey. As for Wong, he argues that the rapid shift to a remote workforce brought on by the pandemic has made the need for people analytics more apparent.

Founded by John Schwarz and Wong in 2010, Vancouver, Canada-based Visier, which has around 417 employees, is designed to integrate data from disparate sources. It onboards data using prebuilt connectors for existing systems, letting customers build their own data integrations, import bulk data, and export and query data as well as transform data into analytics models.

Above: Visier’s executive dashboard.

“Visier was founded 11 years ago by a group of us who had spent the majority of our career pioneering business intelligence, first at Crystal Decisions and then, through a series of acquisitions, at Business Objects and SAP,” Wong told VentureBeat via email. “Visier was founded on the belief that the analytics problem needed to be solved differently — not as a general-purpose platform, but a series of purpose-built apps that provide much faster time to value, much lower total cost of ownership, and access to the sort of insights that managers and executives need to make better decisions and run their businesses.”

People analytics

Companies are increasingly struggling to apply data strategies to their HR operations. A Deloitte report found that more than 80% of HR professionals score themselves low in their ability to analyze, a troubling fact in a highly data-driven field.

Visier seeks to address this by providing access to more than 2,000 out-of-the-box analytics modules that can be embedded in websites, apps, and portals. On the backend, the platform preps data for analysis, filling in the voids and creating derived data attributes.

“People data is notoriously messy, complex and challenging to analyze,” Wong said. “Visier has a number of powerful capabilities — connected to our proven analytical model for people data — that directly solve key people challenges for our customers spanning areas like diversity, retention, rewards, and recruitment.”

Visier has more than 12 million employee histories across 75 countries loaded into its platform, which has enabled the company to create benchmarks that span multiple industries and predictive models.

“Companies use Visier to understand and improve their workforce at every stage of the employee lifecycle — from recruitment to retirement. Visier is designed to answer virtually any question HR, people managers and executives need to ask about their workforce to improve diversity and inclusion, performance and productivity, employee retention and happiness, and to more effectively plan hiring and career progression, and manage people and teams,” Wong said. “Our product helps answer questions like: do we have the people and skills we need to meet our goals? Are we managing our workforce responsibly and sustainably? Are diverse individuals represented at all levels of the workforce? Are we prepared for what’s to come?”

Visier isn’t without competition in the global HR analytics market, which was estimated to be worth $2.49 billion as of 2020. ChartHop recently closed a $35 million funding round, and rivals CoachHub and Hibob are similarly well-capitalized. There’s also workplace analytics startup VergeSense, OKR-tracking platform WorkBoard, employee evaluation tool 15Five, and Gloat, a career development marketplace for knowledge workers.

But Visier has a strong foothold in the segment, with a customer base of over 8,000 brands including Uber, Adobe, Bridgestone, Wayfair, and EA.

“There have been plenty of negatives that are similar to any company operating during [the pandemic]. The difference for Visier is that, in a way, we’ve also benefited from it because we’re providing a solution to many of these challenges,” Wong said. “The way I see it is that the pandemic just amplified and accelerated what was already happening: employees have new expectations for how, where, when and why they work. The pressure is on for companies to know and understand their employees better than ever before and this requires the sort of data and insights that Visier provides.”


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