As the Obama re-election campaign swings back in to action this autumn, NationalField, the private social network for enterprise and organisations that helped the US President to the White House, is launching in the UK.
With clients including the NHS, Ocean Sky, Kaiser Permanente and the 2012 Obama re-election campaign, NationalField has had a stellar start. The company has grown rapidly and became profitable in its first year, with firms buying into the unique management tool designed to streamline internal communications, communicate vision and capture real-time data.
Founded by Oxford and Sorbonne educated Edward Saatchi and entrepreneurs Justin Lewis and Aharon Wasserman during the 2008 Obama for American campaign, NationalField is advised by some of the world’s leading luminaries across the social, enterprise social and pure enterprise sectors – bringing a breadth of relevant experience to the table. These include Chris Hughes - a founding member of Facebook, Sam Lawrence – former CMO of Jive and Jay Rossiter – SVP at Yahoo and VP at Oracle.
NationalField is a management tool for the 21st century, enabling managers to filter key business metrics to different parts of the company, oversee projects wherever they and their team are and understand what’s going on in their business at any given time. The patented technology allows businesses to combine the ‘Facebook generation’s’ enthusiasm for social with enterprise resource planning systems already in place – creating a unique structure for internal communications and management.
The system allows employees to swap information and intelligence in real time whether they are sitting next to each other or out in the field. It also helps to address some of the disconnect that can be experienced across different levels in a company.
“NationalField has resonance with today’s workforce as it looks and feels like social networks such as Facebook,” says Saatchi. “But it also gives managers a chance to see exactly what is happening in their organisation at any given time.
“Employees of all ages are now used to updating their status and getting instant feedback in their personal lives. We’re giving them an outlet to show what they are contributing to their company every day – not just once a year in their annual review,” says Saatchi.
It was on the 2008 Obama campaign trail that Saatchi, Lewis and Wasserman recognised a significant gap in the way communication was managed on the campaign. NationalField was born as a tool to improve communication among field staff and managers, revolutionising the way the campaign was managed.
NationalField’s success during the Obama campaign led its founders to take it to the next level and roll it out as a standalone company in the post-campaign period. Since 2009 the company has taken corporate and political America - and now the UK - by storm with a number of high profile clients across a cross section of industries.
As the company embarks on a new round of fundraising in Silicon Valley, it has also set up its European HQ at The Hub in Kings Cross near to London’s ‘Silicon Roundabout’. “We’ve chosen The Hub in order to tap into the entrepreneurial buzz in the area and help us fulfil our goal of becoming the market leader in the emerging ‘global social enterprise resource planning’ sector by 2020” says Saatchi.
NationalField’s executive team includes Edward Saatchi, CEO, Aharon Wasserman, chief product officer and Justin Lewis, chief technology officer. To grow the EMEA business, Saatchi is working with former Obama campaign colleague and organisational expert Alex Lofton, who is the firm’s head of business development in Europe.