Kintone Corporation: Making Workforce Management Seamless

Dave Landa, CEO, Kintone CorporationDave Landa, CEO
In 1997, three young Panasonic engineers, discontent with expensive and unwieldy office management software, quit their jobs to create a business solution built for teams. Soon thereafter, the company Cybozu was born, which would become the fastest Japanese company to go from inception to IPO within just three years. Having consecutively won Japan’s #1 office productivity software, the firm went on to launch Kintone, its first cloud solution which has expanded into a new corporation presently operating in the U.S.

Over the past couple of years, Kintone’s solution portfolio has developed considerably from a productivity software to a business application development platform. The core element of Kintone is an application template library comprising pre-built HR & workforce management template applications that can be fully customized, even by non-coders, and readily added into client domains to meet their unique requirements. The firm’s CEO, Dave Landa emphasizes on collaboration and teamwork as he states,” Collaboration is built into the DNA of our product, and a lot of collaborative tools are layered right into the heart of our solutions.”

From the perspective of security, Kintone’s platform has an entire permission control engine built into it which grants multi-level access to various data points and records. On top of that, the platform also incorporates top-level data security capabilities such as two-factor authentication which includes not only password authentication but also device-centric authentication. For sensitive company data, Kintone offers both data-in-transit as well as data-at-rest encryption, thus providing several layers of protection for clients’ IT needs.

Landa highlights Dynamic Analytics and Reporting—a configurable feature of Kintone’s platform. Once data is entered into an application, users can rapidly prepare charts and graphs based on any of the data fields or data elements, which automatically update in real-time. The charts and graphs are available on a dashboard for the management to study or for individuals to view dynamically. For further details, they can simply click on the bar or pie chart element that will re-direct to a spreadsheet view allowing them to probe deeper into the data.

Further elaborating on Kintone’s configuration capabilities, Landa states, “We deliver an open API that allows third-party developers to introduce personalized Javascript functionalities or design elements on the platform.” Customers can easily access and use these functionalities without any coding.

The core element of Kintone is an application template library comprising pre-built HR & workforce management template applications

Kintone’s API leverages REST API technology, in addition to a series of webhooks, which facilitates one-to-one integrations with any type of data service. Presently, Kintone leverages a number of integration hubs to build out its solutions, the largest being Zapier. By integrating with Zapier, Kintone clients can quickly integrate up to 750 different cloud services amalgamated in the Zapier hub.

Furthermore, Kintone’s cloud-based platform seamlessly integrates with its mobile app. “With mobile workforce management embedded on our platform, we make the onboarding process greatly efficient and productive,” notes Landa.

Kintone’s solution portfolio design is twofold: on the one hand, it is modular implying that users can build any individual application— ranging from CRM to sales to retail management—and later add on various modules such as permissions, notifications, and process management to their applications. On the other hand, to get customers up and running quickly and increase their productivity, Kintone offers a suite of application templates that clients can add to their existing domains and start using them. Some of the HR & workforce management applications include time and attendance management, calendar-driven scheduling, benefits tracking and management, work travel and PTO management, recruiting and applicant tracker, and performance/ talent management among others.

In one recent instance, Kintone came to the aid of a global manufacturer that was looking to customize their performance tracking. The client oversaw a number of facilities across Asia and hence was struggling to manage and systematize the performance documents. Moreover, they were using Excel spreadsheets to record the statistics which again was extremely time-consuming. With Kintone’s centralized solution at hand, the client was able to effectively streamline its performance tracking process in a matter of days. Also, the solution kept the management informed regarding performance document dues via automated notifications which in turn maximized the client’s efficiency.

Twenty years from its genesis, Kintone aspires to continue expanding its footprint as it spins out localized versions of its cloud-based software across Europe and South America. In terms of solution enhancements, the firm’s transition from its self-managed data centers to public cloud services is already underway. Next in line is the expansion of Kintone’s integration capabilities to latest integration hubs, namely Microsoft Flow and Workato in the approaching months.