We launched Jell to the public a couple months ago, and are thrilled by the usage and feedback we’ve received so far. As we look forward to the future of the product, it’s important for us to start by answering a simple question: Why?
Jell was created by a small team within Formstack, and we built it to help solve some of the problems we faced as remote company quickly approaching 50 employees. And while it’s great that Jell is helping us scratching our own itch, our passion for the product goes beyond our own short-term needs.
Here are a few of the reasons why we’ve decided to dedicate time and energy to working on Jell:
Helping apply best practices
As a manager or startup founder, there’s a seemingly never-ending list of fires to fight by day, and concerns to keep you awake by night. And while every company is different, it’s universal that we’re all plagued with similar recurring questions — Are we all on the same page? Is everyone working on the right things? Is anyone struggling?
Like many, I’m eager to learn best practices when it comes to managing teams, but it’s often a struggle to put those practices into place. I know I should step back and focus on a management problem, but in the fast-paced reality of a growing company it’s often easier to focus on landing the next customer or shipping the next product feature.
We think the right tools can help managers apply best practices without dragging teams down with overbearing processes. For example, it should be simple for anyone to share in a few minutes each day what they’re working on and what they’re struggling with — without adding yet another meeting to the calendar and interrupting the flow of the workday.
Supporting the future of work
We’re firm believers in the benefits of remote work. Studies continue to show that people are happier and more productive when they have the flexibility to work remotely. And while it’s still not for every team to move to 100% remote, it’s clear to us that the workplace of the future will embrace it in some way.
But moving to remote work can be challenging. While technology has helped make it feasible, we think there’s a bigger opportunity to build tools designed with functionality that specifically supports remote teams. To be successful in a remote environment, teams generally need to be more proactive and structured with their communication. We think the right tools can encourage and support that, increasing the odds of success with a remote team.
Building happy, effective teams
We spend a lot of time thinking about how to make our employees happier and our teams more effective. There aren’t any silver bullets, but we’ve seen some success taking small steps toward implementing best practices and supporting people wherever they work.
And if we can spend our day building software to in turn help support you in your efforts toward building happy, effective teams…that gets us pretty excited.