Melbourne startup Socialsuite has raised $1.85 million in funding. The round was led by AddVenture Fund, with additional funding from Salesforce Ventures following the startup’s win at the 2018 Salesforce World Tour Sydney PitchComp.
Cofounded by Dr Clara Ong and Damian Hajda, Socialsuite has developed a platform that works to help organisations measure the impact of their work.
Dr Ong previously told Startup Daily that the idea for the platform came during her time working on social impact assessments in regional and Indigenous communities in 2008.
Here she was assessing how corporate social investments could best be deployed, and whether community outcomes were actually being achieved as a result of these investments.
She noticed that assessments were primarily paper-based, meaning data collection was manual and time-consuming. In turn, it was difficult to effectively measure the impact of activities, and assess if any real change or impact had been achieved.
Dr Ong then teamed up with Hadja to begin work on what would become the Socialsuite platform, with former head of strategy at Catch Group, Brad Gurrie appointed as CEO last year.
“Socialsuite’s software as a service platform measures and reports an organisation’s ‘impact’ similar to how accounting software is used to report on financial performance,” Gurrie said.
“Its purpose is to employ the same rigour to impact measurement as there has been for hundreds of years around commercial and financial reporting.”
According to Gurrie, Socialsuite currently has clients across Australia, Canada, South America, North America, and the UK; among them are the likes of Marks and Spencer, Salvation Army, Australia Post, and State Emergency Services (SES).
“Socialsuite is also gaining early traction with impact investors such as superannuation funds, banks and foundations that are want to report the impact of their investments in addition to the financial returns,” Gurrie said.
Among the other Australian startups working in this space is The Impact Suite, which is looking to bridge the “trust gap” in the philanthropic sector.
The platform hones in on the notion that while donors want to give to organisations that deliver – or aim to deliver – on their charitable purpose, the sector often gets bogged down in debates around administrative costs.
The startup’s solution is a “sustainability measure” based on the visual of the lotus flower, which analyses an organisation’s purpose, people, processes, impact, and review. A user wanting to search for and learn more about a charity can simply click on ‘Check my charity’ and search for what they’re looking for. A charity’s listing details their revenue and expenditure and how they compare to other charities in the sector on these figures, their staff numbers, and where they operate.
The listing also includes information about their activities, purpose, and impact and diversity statements.
Image: Brad Gurrie, Clara Ong, Damian Hajda. Source: Supplied.