Founder Stories
December 7, 2023

Announcing our Investment in Harriet

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Welcoming Harriet!

Today we’re delighted to announce our investment in Harriet, the first full-stack AI solution designed to get companies’ internal data ready for the AI revolution, relieve People teams of their daily admin burden, and give every staff member their own HR assistant. We led the £1.2m pre-seed round and were joined by Frontline Ventures, Portfolio Ventures, and Notion Capital.

Harriet's HR Assistant

Harriet revolutionises the way companies manage their data and HR operations, addressing the critical challenge of poor data management which hampers AI adoption. As the first AI solution tailored for HR, Harriet swiftly scans and organises existing organisational policies and documents, identifying gaps, duplications, or conflicts. This process not only streamlines data but lays a solid foundation for further AI integration. 

Transforming into a personal HR assistant, Harriet integrates seamlessly with tools like Slack, HRIS, and payroll systems. It simplifies tasks such as booking leave, updating policies, sourcing payslips and providing personalised support, all while catering to the specific needs of each employee. This efficiency cuts down on routine inquiries, feering HR teams to focus on more strategic tasks such as culture development, compensation, and training.

Furthermore, Harriet offers a confidential channel for sensitive inquiries like parental leave or bereavement policies. By connecting with various interfaces in a company’s tech stack, including Google Drive, Notion, Xero, and others, it ensures staff access necessary HR information without workflow disruption. 

Powered by a Large language model with integrated privacy and accuracy safeguards, Harriet ensures reliable and secure data handling, reinforcing the trust of employees in their HR systems. This innovation is a game-changer, particularly for HR teams who currently spend a significant portion of their time on administrative tasks, allowing them to deliver more impactful employee experiences.

The team:

Harriet has been launched by two former startup founders; Cecily Motley, previously founder and CEO of Motley, and David Buxton, former founder and CEO of risk profile SaaS company Arachnys.

Harriet Founders: Cecily Motley and David Buxton

Cecily Motley, CEO of Harriet, comments:

“The world is heading towards a future where every employee has an AI-powered assistant - with all the major tech players racing to build one. But companies aren’t currently set-up to reap the rewards of these advancements. And one of the main blockers to AI adoption for companies is the state of their knowledge bank. It’s a familiar story - multiple versions of policies saved in different places which are forgotten about until someone needs them. As organisations look to take advantage of AI solutions, and as teams begin to expect instant access to information and support, it’s vital to ensure tools lay the right foundations as well as unlock efficiencies. That’s why Harriet has been designed to clean up data, get companies onto the right track, and then offer the daily assistance staff and People teams are looking for.”

“HR and People teams are responsible for so many vital things - from culture to compensation. But too many colleagues see them as just a route to key information, like their payslips and P60s. This means HR teams are drowning in fiddly, low-value admin tasks. Harriet AI is freeing them from this burden; allowing HR teams to focus on their real purpose and show how valuable their role in a company really is.”

A team of highly experienced HR industry leaders are joining Harriet as advisors, including Jessica Zwaan, COO at Whereby, and future of work advocate Johannes Sundlo.

Concept Ventures partner Oliver Kicks comments:

We strongly believe in the team and their capabilities, Cecily and David are both serial entrepreneurs, who know how to build products people want to buy. They’re a tenacious, creative duo who have built something that truly adds value. We’re excited to be joining them on this journey and can’t wait to see their innovation make the world of work better for thousands. 

Learn more from the Harriet team on their portfolio page.