GuideSpark, a startup that helps human resources teams communicate with the rest of the company, announced today that it has raised $22.2 million in Series C funding. CEO Keith Kitani told me that GuideSpark works with HR to create videos and interactive content covering things like employee benefits and compensations. While parts of those videos can be reused from company to company, Kitani emphasized that they're customized to include a business' branding and the details of specific programs. Last week, I wrote about Grovo, another startup that creates videos to help businesses train their employees. Kitani said the two companies are "adjacent," rather than competitive, because of GuideSpark's aforementioned focus on custom videos, and because (unlike Grovo) his company isn't trying to teach general online skills. "Right now we're just focusing on HR communications," he said. And while Kitani admitted some people think that sounds "pretty narrow," he said it's actually quite broad. "We have over 150 titles that we customize for customers covering benefits, compensation, stock information, on-boarding, compliance." GuideSpark Intro from Lindsey Records on Vimeo. He added that GuideSpark's real competition comes in the form of old-fashioned approaches like employee handbooks and in-person seminars. GuideSpark doesn't try to replace all these existing practices, but usually develops "a two or three year transition program" to move things online. And while its website highlights big-name customers like Adobe, Dropbox and Toys R Us, Kitani said the company works with smaller organizations, too — the smallest is "just under 100 people." GuideSpark raised a $15 million Series B about a year ago. The new round was led by Meritech Capital Partners (Meritech's Craig Sherman is joining the company's board of directors), with participation from previous investors New Enterprise Associates, Storm Ventures and IDG Ventures. The money will help GuideSpark invest in product, sales and marketing, Kitani said. He also hopes to expand its partnerships — apparently the company already works with insurance brokers who can use GuideSpark to help explain their offerings. I've included one demo video above, but you can see more videos and case studies here.
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