Big Brother is coming to a workplace near you… with a little help from Credit Suisse. The Swiss bank’s NEXT Investors Fund has taken a majority stake in Sapience Analytics, an Indian “people analytics solutions company” which “delivers unprecedented visibility into work patterns and behaviour in an organisation”.
Sapience’s technology allows bosses to automatically track the work patterns of employees by monitoring their use of PCs, laptops, tablets and mobile phones. That sets it apart from traditional work monitoring systems which require users to log their activity in time sheets.
Sapience’s tools are already being used by “leaders of over 70 major customers to make better informed decisions and improve operating efficiencies across their enterprises”, according to a note announcing the Credit Suisse investment, the scale of which is not being disclosed. “We are seeing rapid growth for Sapience in the US market,” said Sapience chief executive and co-founder Shirish Deodhar, adding that the group will move its headquarters to the US as a result of Credit Suisse’s investment.
NEXT Investors was originally used to make fintech bets on behalf of Credit Suisse’s investment bank, but moved under the group’s asset management umbrella in 2013 so the Sapience investment will be funded using client money, not the bank’s. Two Credit Suisse veterans – NEXT Fund portfolio manager Greg Grimaldi and senior advisor Frank Fanzilli – are also joining the Sapience Analytics board.
Interestingly, there are “no plans” for Credit Suisse’s direct employees to use Sapience’s tools to monitor their own workforce but they will be used by some third parties that do work for Credit Suisse.