People.ai

I’m excited to share with the world today that we’ve raised $7M from Lightspeed Venture Partners and a few other notable investors. This partnership is timely as People.ai is now in prime position to lead the new category of Sales Management Automation. This funding will help us scale engineering and R&D to accelerate our speed of innovation, while keeping our focus on the Customers.

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Customer Focus

Y Combinator taught us to focus on building something people want. Through the program we learned that sales managers have been managing their teams based on hunch and intuition, not hard data. They have been lacking a way to see all of the sales touch points, across all channels. They’ve been struggling to connect the dots that lead to meaningful outcomes. They currently don’t have the data to fully understand what it takes to truly close a deal and what makes a sales rep a true “A player”. They don’t have a way to orchestrate multiplayer sales processes and measure true multi-threading in large accounts.

Therefore, a year ago we set out on a journey to provide sales managers with a platform for data driven sales management.

Since then we’ve partnered with 50+ large sales teams at companies like Gainsight, SalesLoft, and PandaDoc and have given them the ability to grow fast without flying blind. In less than 6 months we’ve shipped a product they use every day.

The future of sales management will be a combination of human experience with predictions and insights, surfaced by AI. Sales managers will no longer wonder about what they should coach their reps on, how the new rep is ramping, or whether all the MQLs were properly followed up on.

We believe Time To Productivity, coaching effectiveness, and the ability to replicate top performers will be measurable KPIs and workflows, not marketing buzzwords. We will let the machines worry about the science of sales, so that sales managers can focus on the art.

This funding round and our past experience in building the world’s largest NLP cloud [see Semantria] will let us focus on building forward looking AI capabilities around ramping, coaching, and managing sales teams at large scale.

AI for Sales Management

Managing sales teams has been a tough job because of several problems compounding each other. Sales reps don’t log their data into CRM for obvious reasons. Sales managers typically do not have a data science education and shouldn’t have to run complex SQL queries to report on sales activity in timely fashion.

Salesforce reporting has always been very hard to use and Wave hasn’t panned out to be a solution. Lastly, sales managers simply don’t have the time to dig into the data looking for answers, thus adding tasks to sales ops’ ever growing list.

Ultimately, today’s sales managers make all their decisions based on imperfect information and lack of insight. The result is reps quitting in 12 months, missed sales targets, and hiring based on stereotypes, not data.

We believe that if sales managers are armed with instant access to reliable, comprehensive data on sales behavior and pipeline data, that is easy to understand, the entire team’s performance will get better.

We are on a mission to pair up every sales manager with an AI that will crunch the numbers for them and give them answers instead of spreadsheets.

AI for managing people is a new category – nobody has ventured in this space before. We are now in the middle of a perfect storm to make data driven [sales] management a reality.

We The People

People.ai is chasing an ambitious goal – making sure every sales decision is data-driven and transparent. If we succeed, every sales floor will become a place of true equal opportunity and a happier, more productive environment overall.

There is a lot of hard tech being built at People.ai: machine learning, deep learning, graph, massive real time data pipes, hundreds of integrations, and complex UX challenges. If you believe in our mission and have the chops to contribute to our engineering, sales or general business efforts, come join us.

If you are interested in helping your sales managers and teams fire on all cylinders, see how we can help and request a demo.

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