Six weeks after buying a new fridge, Anand Subbaraj found himself on the phone with customer service to deal with strange noises coming from the appliance. Technicians would only arrive without having the right parts or not knowing how to fix that particular device. It ultimately took six calls to customer service and eight weeks for the refrigerator to be repaired.
This experience got Subbaraj, who spent 14 years at Microsoft helping large organizations improve their businesses, to think about how he could apply this to help global brands deliver better customer experiences.
“When I looked into it, I found that the experience was not connected at all and the technicians were not empowered to perform their work nor could they provide the experience on demand as they lacked tools, solutions and integrations,” he told TechCrunch. .
In 2016, he launched Seattle-based Zuper, a provider of productivity tools for intelligent field service management and customer engagement. Today, the company announced $13 million in Series A funding, led by FUSE, with participation from Sequoia Capital India and existing investors Prime Venture Partners and HubSpot. This latest round gives Zuper $14.1 million in total funding raised to date.
The company has designed its product offerings to connect all the moving parts related to booking residential and commercial service jobs: integrations for things like CRM, payroll, and APIs, and features like of booking so that the skills of the right technician are exploited and all the information on the job. is at the technician’s fingertips so that he has everything he needs, from the start, to carry out the service. A bonus is the ability to tell customers their technician’s estimated time of arrival.
This was all designed to get the job done the right way the first time, Subbaraj said. As a result, organizations using Zuper save, on average, at least 20 hours per week, per user, and improve customer satisfaction by more than 50 percent, he added.
The new funding follows Zuper’s explosive growth over the past 12 months, which included global traction and seven-fold annualized year-over-year recurring revenue growth. She achieved 140% net revenue retention, onboarded over 100 new clients in North America, Asia and Europe, and tripled her team size to 55 employees.
Additionally, Zuper has added over 250 new features and completed 18 new integrations with organizations including Salesforce, Oracle Netsuite, and QuickBooks. Also in 2021, the company supported over 3 million work orders and 15 million planned work hours and facilitated over $20 million in transactions through the platform.
Subbaraj plans to invest the new funding in product leadership innovation in workflows, location intelligence, dispatch, marketing and sales. It also plans to double Zuper’s headcount this year and expand its partner ecosystem.
With more than 5 million technicians working in these types of service businesses, Subbaraj believes there is an opportunity to inject $1.1 trillion technology into this industry. He is not alone in this thought; for example, we reported that other companies were announcing new venture capital as they developed similar technologies.
Most recently, Fuzey raised $4.5 million in seed funding for its “digital one-stop-shop” for small businesses and independent entrepreneurs, while Puls Technologies raised $15 million for its mobile app connecting merchants to on-demand home repair services. There are also bigger companies in the space, like Jobber, which announced $60 million in funding.
“Since 2020, $420 billion has been spent on home improvements and repairs as people spend more time at home, increasing the demand for skilled workers,” Subbaraj said. “It has caused a tailwind for home and business services, and multiple players may be here. We see players coming up with different things to provide the right tools.
Kellan Carter, general partner of FUSE, also said via a written statement that Zuper is bringing digital technology to a traditionally slow to adopt field services industry.
“The market fit of the company’s products, coupled with a strong management team, has enabled Zuper to become a leading field service software provider with global scale growth, focused on the customer and a strong ecosystem of partners across the entire service management technology stack,” he added. . “We see significant opportunities for Zuper to continue to deliver tangible return on investment to its customers.”