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February 23, 2015

15Five – Improved Team Communication

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As businesses grow, it becomes harder and harder for founders to stay in touch with what’s really going on among their employees and managers. 15Five is a web-based platform that business owners, founders, and managers can all use to stay better connected to their staffs.

15Five is designed around the idea of promoting weekly internal conversations. These conversations are easy to have in person when a business consists of just a dozen or fewer employees, but they become rarer as a business grow over time. With 15Five, you can get these conversations back. Each week, 15Five prompts your employees with questions like “What challenges are you facing?” and “What is going well in your roll this week?” Your employees are provided with space to type in insightful responses to these questions, and their answers are forwarded to your managers. Managers should take five minutes to respond and review the answers their staffs have submitted, and leadership (like founders and CEOs) can review the conversations whenever they have a few minutes to spare.

Using 15Five should help boost engagement, increase loyalty, and improve productivity within team members and departments. Managers can quickly identify the areas where their employees need the most support, and they can ultimately reduce employee turnover.

Practical Uses:

  • Check in with your employees each week
  • Find out if your team is on track to complete a project on time
  • Boost morale at your startup
  • Decrease employee turnover and reduce HR costs

Insider Tips:

  • Employees can opt to send “private” comments to their managers
  • Use @mentions to give public praise to specific employees
  • 15Five supports company-wide, group-specific, and user-specific questions
  • Request to view reports from anyone on your team

What we liked:

  • Administrators and managers are able to change questions at any time
  • Large staffs can be broken down into separate department
  • The “peer viewing” feature allows individuals within a shared group to comment on each other’s reports
  • 15Five offers a free trial for businesses

What we didn’t like:

  • Only one recipient can be selected for each private comment

Alternatives:

Company Info:

  • Launched: 2012
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: San Francisco, California
  • Founded by: David Hassell
  • Web site: http://www.15five.com

Costs:

  • $49 per month for the first 10 people

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