Allo, a leading remote collaboration software provider backed by Zoom, announced a new platform aimed at helping remote teams stay in sync. The new Allo brings together Objectives and Key Result (OKR) software, project management, and team building features with its collaborative Canvases to create a unified platform for team cohesion.
“Hybrid work is great, but most companies find that it also makes it harder for teams to feel connected and cohesive,” said Ray Hong, Co-founder and CEO of Allo. “We designed Allo to help encourage collaboration and make people feel closer to each other, even when they’re physically apart.”
Hybrid and remote work has exploded in the past few years, with half of all workers in a recent Gallup poll reporting that they will work remotely at least part of the time by the end of the year, and about a quarter reporting they will be fully remote. At the same time, job burnout is at an all-time high, according to the American Psychological Association. The APA’s annual Work and Well-Being survey found that three in five workers said work-related stress caused them to have a lack of interest, motivation and energy at work. A total of 36% had cognitive weariness, 32% emotional exhaustion and 44% physical fatigue—a 38% jump from 2019.
The issue, said Allo Co-Founder CEO Ray Hong, is that the lack of physical presence means there are fewer avenues for unstructured interaction between team members and almost no passive ways to gather information about how the team is doing. This leads remote team members feeling disconnected from their colleagues, less able to understand how their work contributes to the whole, and less able to seek help when they run into issues.
Allo seeks to rebuild this physical “connective tissue” virtually with proven techniques from the worlds of online gaming and community building. Allo consists of five modules:
- Canvas – A whiteboarding tool for multimedia collaboration asynchronous and in real-time. Canvas makes it really easy to share information, brainstorm and solicit feedback from the team in meetings, and it becomes the single source of truth for collaboration around projects. Most things in Allo are also Canvases that teams can use to collaborate, which tightly couples project tracking, group work, and documentation in one system.
- OKR – Allo OKR harnesses the flexible and powerful Objective and Key Results (OKR) framework originally created by Google to help teams define goals and track progress to keep everyone moving forward together. Allo OKR makes goal setting painless for managers and takes the uncertainty out of understanding how individual work maps to collective team success.
- People – People pages provide a way for the team to learn about one another and recognize the things that make their coworkers unique. People pages provide a place for team members to highlight their interests and give updates on their lives and the things they’re working on. They are also updated automatically using data from other parts of Allo—showing who people most commonly work with, what Initiatives and KRs they’re contributing to and responsible for, and statistics about their working style and morale. Users can earn customizable achievements for things such as interacting with other teams or making edits in Canvases, giving organizations a way to incentivize behaviors that contribute to success and recognize excellence for diverse contributions.
- Posts – Posts are a space in Allo for announcements and asynchronous conversations that aren’t centered on a specific Canvas. Similar to a social media news feed, Posts is a great place for team members to share updates and questions about what they’re working on, and for their coworkers to provide answers and celebrate wins.
- Dashboard – The Dashboard is the single source of truth for projects and collaboration happening in Allo. Allo Dashboard collects data from all the other parts of Allo and presents it in an easy-to-digest format. From progress on OKRs to staff happenings to leaderboards and recent achievements, it helps the team stay abreast of what’s happening and celebrate wins together.
One unique aspect of how Allo works is the way that it integrates Canvases into every part of the product. OKRs, initiatives, tasks and projects all have tightly integrated canvases that team can use to work together on every item. This puts goals and project tracking into the same system with the multimedia assets related to the work and a record of collaboration that happens on them, which closes the loop for project managers and simplifies the task of keeping everything collated and up-to-date.
Allo is free to trial and $9 per user per month after the trial period, and each workspace also has unlimited guests with limited privileges to simplify working with outside collaborators or using it for presentations.
Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, Allo is the workspace for cohesive hybrid teams. Its unique platform helps make remote meetings more engaging, while using game design techniques to encourage peer-to-peer collaboration. With Allo, remote workers stay connected and their managers can see how they’re collaborating and foster tighter teamwork even in a distributed workforce. Founded in 2017, Allo is venture-backed with $8.5M in investment from venture capital firms including Zoom Ventures, Smilegate Investment, Ascendo Ventures, and Atinum Investment. It was part of the 24th class of Alchemist Accelerator, which helped start more than 400 companies including such notables as Wise.io, MobileSpan, Rigetti Computing, and MightyHive.