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Meet the founder: Olivier Severyns is simplifying life for the deskless workforce

It’s estimated that around 80% of the workforce are deskless. For the remaining 20%, the word may call to mind working from home during the pandemic or — for those with longer memories — the trauma of arriving at the hotdesk office a little too late. But for employees in sectors like hospitality and retail, deskless working is their normality. And for their managers, it often creates a organisation headache.

Olivier Severyns was one of those managers. A Parisienne restauranteur, his chains relied on being able to efficiently manage his staff and allocate shifts. But, he discovered, most of the industry relied on old-fashioned methods, like a spreadsheet, or even notebooks, in the manager’s office. Aside from being time-consuming, changes were difficult, and the opaque methodology meant staff frequently felt they were not being treated fairly or getting the shifts they wanted.

Seeking to improve this, he developed Snapshift to help manage his own teams. Realising that it was a solution needed by restaurants throughout France and the world, he left the hospitality business to work on developing the platform as a product.

Recently, Snapshift has just completed a $45 million Series A funding round. Already boasting an impressive list of clients including names like Subway, Pizza Hut, Spar, Amorino, Biocoop, Fitness Park, Columbus Café and Carrefour, Olivier plans further expansion of the platform.

Highland Europe’s investment reflects their confidence that the product will be in high demand. Jean Tardy-Joubert, a partner, shared Olivier’s assessment that Snapshift will be a much-sought solution, “we spoke to countless businesses in the broad hospitality and service industries that are struggling with the exact pain point that Snapshift is solving. There is a vast opportunity for Snapshift to bring its mission-critical platform into other sectors.”

TFN spoke with Olivier to find out more about him, Snapshift, and his plans.

What was your background before founding Snapshift?

I was a serial entrepreneur with several restaurant chains, and I coded the first version of Snapshift to manage my teams. I decided to launch Snapshift when it became apparent this was a tool millions of other restaurants needed.

What is Snapshift? How does the technology work, and who will use it the most?

Snapshift simplifies HR for small and medium-sized businesses and their frontline teams, mainly in the hospitality, grocery and retail sectors. With Snapshift, managers can organise and schedule their teams’ shifts, communicate scheduling changes or company info, prepare payroll – all while making sure staff members get updated right away and limiting costly scheduling mistakes.

Who are your competitors, and how do you differ?

Our main competitor is Excel! For 80 to 90% of our customers, we are the first digital solution they switch to, and they will immediately see the difference in saved time and reduced costly mistakes.

There are some Software-as-a-Service competitors like Skello and Planday. Our product differs by offering additional integrations with things like billing, payment & POS providers.

How did you secure $45M Series A from Highland Europe?

We were in contact with several international funds when Highland Europe approached us late in the process. They love small and medium-sized businesses and HRtech in SaaS.

Highland Europe have a great track record in these fields, so we were very much aligned on the vision, and when we talked our KPIs convinced them that we were a good candidate to take the leadership in Europe.

What are your goals and mission for Snapshift in 2022 and beyond?

Our goal is to triple our revenues in 2022 and launch internationally, starting with Spain early in the year. Our rollout to other countries will follow at the end of 2022 or beginning of 2023.

With the backdrop of the Great Resignation, our clients have difficulties when it comes to employee recruitment and retention. This feeds into a global trend in automatisation of HR processes to gain efficiency and improve the employee experience.

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