Android Apps

Rypple blends social feedback and workplace productivity in Android app, plans to integrate Salesforce in the future

February 1, 2012 | by Andrew Kameka

Productivity, Reviews

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The annual performance review, which can determine if an employee gets a raise or merely gets to keep his or her job, isn’t the most optimal way to monitor performance. Why wait an entire year for bad habits or inefficient tactics to take hold when you could deliver critical feedback within days, hours, or even moments? Surely an employee will work better performance is reviewed sooner rather than later. Right?

That’s where Rypple, a performance management service recently acquired by Salesforce, comes in. Rypple enables supervisors and employees to create clearly defined goals and discuss or rate the efforts that go into achieving said goals. And since so much of business is conducted on mobile phones today, Rypple has branched delivered a new Android app to manage teams and performance.

“A huge amount of our traffic was already coming from [mobile phone browsers], so we realized we needed an app,” said Rypple VP of Product Management Maksim Ovsyannikov.

“We kind of reached out to managers and end users to figure what was triggering their request to use the application from their mobile device. The answer was really simple: if you want recognition to be real-time, the only real way to do that is through mobile. Whether you’re on the run, in a meeting, or not at your desk at the time, which most of us aren’t always, it became necessary to support Android devices.”

And so Rypple is now here to make feedback more frequent, consistent, and documented. The app creates a work center that a team or company joins and then focuses on collaboration and productivity in key areas.

  • Social Goals are the objectives that employees work towards that managers can monitor in real-time. A supervisor can see when a specific goal is being worked on and when benchmarks are reached.
  • Meaningful Recognition is when a manager acknowledges a goal has been achieved. There are badges created that seem a little over the top, but Rypple keeps track of these achievements over an extended period of time. Ovsyannikov tells us that this can come in handy when you’re looking for someone within the company who has certain skills, which may be validated by the recognition portfolio.
  • Real-time feedback creates a dedicated space when employees can ask coworkers or supervisors questions, get tips on how to accomplish something, or be nudged away from potential mistakes.
  • Continuous coaching has notes from meetings and goal tracking to monitor progress.
  • Multi-channel access to Rypple from any kind of device, including the newsfeed that displays your progress and that of your co-workers. There’s also a tab to focus simply on your content or the goals to which you are connected.

Rypple sees Android as a key part of plans to “transform the social feed into a productivity feed,” according to Ovsyannikov. That’s why the app incorporates features like photo sharing content and integrating with the calendar. In the future, the service could become even more powerful with integration to other services from Salesforce. When asked how the acquisition could expand Rypple’s capabilities on Android, Ovsyannikov had this to say:

“Not yet, but it’s something we’re planning and building. There will be multiple integration points – some of the natural ones are Chatter and the service cloud and sales cloud of the CRM product. We have an integration of it in beta right now with an integration of Rypple recognition…it’s being used by a few customers already.”

As for tablets, Rypple also has that in its plans. The current app was built for Android 2.1 and higher devices in mind because the company wants to focus on delivering a quality product for the high volume of users who already access Rypple on their mobile devices. A strategy for supporting tablet, be it through an HTML5 app wrapped in a native container or a tablet-specific app built from the ground-up, has yet to be determined.

Rypple is available for free in the Android Market. It requires accounts that range from free with basic capabilities, Premium for $5, and Phenomenal for $9 per month. More information on the features and structure of these accounts are available at Rypple.com.