startups

M.R. Asks 3 Questions: Arvind Jain, Glean CEO

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Arriving out of stealth with $55m in funding, Arvind Jain’s Glean is arriving to market with big backers who are keen to benefit from a work assistant that brings functional, timesaving benefits to enterprises. 

With their work assistant to search details from all of a company’s apps – Arvind and his teams are not just offering ease of information “finding” – but the powerful unified indexing is helping companies save at least two hours per week, per user. 

Here is what Glean has launched with: 


M.R. Rangaswami: Finding information at work has always posed problems. Can you explain how Glean is addressing this pain point for workers?

Arvind Jain: Employees today are more frustrated than ever as they waste time trying to find information scattered across all of their company’s apps. In fact, workers waste 20% of their time searching for information to do their jobs (McKinsey).

Glean is the work assistant that searches across all your company’s apps to help you find exactly what you need and discover the things you should know. At its core, Glean delivers a powerful, unified search experience that indexes dozens of applications, understanding context, language, behavior, and employee relationships, to find personalized answers to questions. On average, Glean customers save 2 hours per employee per week—freeing up time to focus on high-value work for the company, like shipping code, closing deals, or resolving support issues.

 

M.R.: What makes Glean different from other companies who have tried to solve the search problem?

Arvind: It’s important to note that enterprise search is really hard. Each company’s content is unique to the company, employees are usually looking for very specific, unrepeated information, and all of this content is usually comprehensible only to those working at the company. That’s why enterprise search has lagged behind web search for decades.

At Glean, we’ve started by ensuring we have the basics right—which other solutions often miss. Glean searches across all of your content, not just document titles. It comes with knowledge of standard synonyms and acronyms, and understands that different parts of your search query are intended for different purposes. Glean’s ranking algorithms constantly learn and improve from feedback on how you interact with search results. 

Beyond the basics, Glean understands your company’s language, how your company works, and how you work. With its built-in semantic search, Glean understands your company’s specific language—allowing you to find what you need by searching for the concept, even if you don’t know exactly how the content was worded. Glean is constantly building a knowledge graph of activity within your company, so it understands how all documents, people, and concepts within a company relate to each other; it can then surface the most important, relevant, and fresh content for each query. And finally, Glean understands the individual, so results are deeply personalized; a software engineer will see different results than an account executive.

 

M.R.: Can you walk us through Glean’s platform – is it easy to use? 

Arvind: Glean is easy to use and ready to go, right out of the box. Companies start by connecting Glean to the apps they already use. This initial setup takes <2 hours and doesn’t require any in-house engineering resources. After indexing a company’s data, Glean immediately starts delivering highly relevant and personalized results, without any manual fine-tuning or maintenance. And the more people use Glean, the better it becomes.

Because Glean is so effective at search and discovery, we’ve seen high adoption across a variety of functions, from engineering to sales and support. Onboarding becomes infinitely easier when new hires can use Glean to search for answers to questions and browse curated collections of content without waiting for someone to explain context. Beyond searching for documents, employees can quickly look up people at their company to understand who they are, what they’re working on, and how they can help. And in a world where remote work is becoming more common, Glean helps employees stay connected and up-to-date by surfacing content that’s most popular at the company and helping employees discover tribal knowledge. 

 

 

M.R. Rangaswami is the Co-Founder of Sandhill.com

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