Spotlight: OneTouchTeam Creates Do-It-Yourself HR

onetouchteam diy human resources

Human resources can be an important part of every business. But the smallest of businesses are unlikely to have the resources to dedicate a whole department to human resources or even to outsource it.

OneTouchTeam is very familiar with the difficulties that small businesses face when trying to run their own HR solutions. So, the company created a DIY human resources solution. Read about the company’s journey and philosophy in this week’s Small Business Spotlight.

What the Business Does

Provides a DIY human resources solution.

CEO Stuart Hearn explains:

“Most small business do not have their own in-house HR expertise and cannot afford to get outside HR help. OneTouchTeam is online ‘DIY’ HR software that gives small businesses all the tools they need to manage their HR and employment tasks themselves.”

Business Niche

Includes everything a business might need to run an HR program.

Hearn says:

“There is a lot of HR software in the marketplace. But OneTouchTeam does more than just allow businesses to store their employee details and holidays records. It’s actually tells them how to do their HR. It has practical guidance on how to do everything from hiring through to firing. And it comes with legally compliant employment policies and contracts.”

onetouchteam diy human resources

How the Business Got Started

At the request of small businesses.

Hearn explains:

“My business partner Mark and I were working for an HR outsourcing company. We were increasingly getting enquiries from small businesses and startups who really needed HR help and support but couldn’t afford to pay for an outsourced service. So we started thinking about how we could use technology to help them to do their own HR as cheaply as possible.”

Biggest Win

Ranking on the first page of Google.

According to Hearn:

“Our initial strategy was to sell mainly through partner companies such as accountants. However we also invested some money in SEO and when it started to have an effect and we started ranking in the top half of page one on Google, we started picking up new customers on a daily basis. It changed everything for us.”

Biggest Risk

Stopping the company’s pay per click campaign.

Hearn explains:

“It was bringing in a lot of traffic to our site but we we believed that the traffic was not generating sufficient revenues. It was nerve racking because it led to a significant drop off in the number of people taking out free trials. However, after a month or so of analysis, it turned out that our levels of paying customers were still increasing at the same level. It showed us that our organic traffic (through SEO) was converting better than our paid for traffic.”

Biggest Challenge

Funding the company early.

Hearn says:

“Software is expensive to build if you want to do it right, which we did. We had enough money to self-fund for 6 months and after that we were planning go get external funding to keep us going until our sales were enough to sustain us. However, our business coach later advised us that to get external funding before we had reached a certain level of revenue would be difficult and we would have to give away too much equity. So we decided to take on other work on the side to keep paying ourselves until sufficient revenues were coming in to support us full time. It was certainly a busy year that year!”

How They’d Spend an Extra $100,000

Adding new features.

Hearn says:

“We’re constantly getting asked to add new features to OneTouchTeam. So we’d use the cash to be able to add new features at a quicker rate than we are able to do at the moment.”

onetouchteam diy human resources

Workplace Culture

Constant online communication.

Hearn explains:

“We’re unusual in that we all work from home as we live in completely different cities. So we’ve had to learn to communicate entirely online. So daily meetings happen via Google Hangouts and the usual office banter takes place over instant messaging. Two of our developers have never even met each other but they still have a great working relationship!”

Favorite Quote

“You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.” ~ Martin Luther King.

Hearn says:

“We like this because we built our software one small step at a time (a process called ‘agile software development’).”

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Find out more about the Small Biz Spotlight program.

Image: OneTouchTeam

Annie Pilon Annie Pilon is a Senior Staff Writer for Small Business Trends and has been a member of the team for 12 years. Annie covers feature stories, community news and in-depth, expert-based guides. She has a bachelor’s degree from Columbia College Chicago in Journalism and Marketing Communications.