Pingboard became profitable during the COVID-19 pandemic by having the right product at the right time, said Bill Boebel its founder.

“We’ve grown the business to just over $6 million in revenue,” he said. “We’ve scaled from being an org chart to being a tool for employee engagement focused on companies that are fully remote.”

The Austin-based company creates employee engagement software for small to medium-sized businesses. Its interactive org chart helps companies onboard, interact with and celebrate employees. That has become increasingly important during the pandemic as many businesses went to remote workforces, Boebel said. It has more than 2,500 customers including The Motley Fool, Duolingo, The Linux Foundation, Meetup, Carta, Silvercar, Turo, and more.

“We built something the employees like to use,” Boebel said.

Founded in 2013, Pingboard has raised $7.5 million in three seed rounds, most recently in 2018. Investors have included Silverton Partners, Capital Factory, Active Capital, and Betaworks as well as many Austin-based angel investors.

Recently, Boebel decided to step down as Chief Executive Officer to pursue other interests in the blockchain and cryptocurrency industries.

“About a year ago, I decided I’m not the best at this space,” Boebel said. “When we were smaller I had really good instincts. When you’re small, it’s easier to move fast and break things. I’ve found my instincts not to be that great as we scale.”

Some founders get a coach and scale the company to the moon, Boebel said. But he decided to hire a new CEO instead.

This year, Laith Dahiyat took over as CEO.  He previously worked as general manager of Weedmaps, the largest software and data company focusing on the legal cannabis sector. He also previously served as Chief Strategy Officer of Chargify, expanding the product into event-based billing and overseeing a successful exit to Battery Ventures in May 2021.

“He believes in the vision for Pingboard,” Boebel said.

The remote workplace sector is a white-hot market for software as service companies right now, Dahiyat said. And Pingboard has all the tools for employee engagement, recruitment, and retention, he said.

“It’s poised to become a rapid growth company,” he said.

The secret to retaining talent is that employees want to feel special, and unique, Boebel said. Pingboard can help companies recognize employees and reward them for their hard work, he said.

Pingboard has 36 employees and plans to expand to 50 by the year and 75 by next year. Pingboard did lay off some employees to get to profitability. It went from 40 employees to 25 during the pandemic and now it’s scaling back up again.

Boebel is remaining with Pingboard as a member of the Board of Directors and as an advisor. Pingboard Co-founder and CTO, Rob Eanes, will continue to lead engineering.

Pingboard, which used to occupy a building near Capital Factory in downtown Austin, moved recently to a remote-first workforce.

“It’s kind of in the DNA of Pingboard,” Boebel said. “We use our own tools. We have that advantage. We have a highly engaged collaborative workforce.”