That’s the inspiration behind EasilyDo – one of the most popular consumer tech startups in the Bay Area.
When Hetal Pandya moved to the Bay Area and gave birth to her daughter, she was anxious to spend more time with her. “I was looking for ways to shorten the time I spent paying bills online, checking when a package that was shipped will arrive or digging around in emails looking for people’s contact information which I had not copied in my phone contacts.”
At first she decided to get an assistant. But that didn’t seem convenient as social activities like wishing her nephew on his birthday would still need to be done by her. Along with her co-founder, Mikael Berner she came up with the idea of a smart assistant which would be connected to your social and productivity apps like Facebook, Calendar, Contacts, Email and others. It would alert you of important events, tickets, travel plans etc. A smart assistant that never misses anything! That’s EasilyDo – a mobile app that helps you get stuff done!
We met Hetal Pandya, co-founder of EasilyDo at the Women 2.0 Conference in San Francisco, last year. She was part of a panel discussion titled ‘How to disrupt & create reality for the next billion users,’ featuring entrepreneurs who had created disruptive companies and were scaling to reach great heights.
Hetal grew up in Mumbai, India, and got a BS from Bombay University. Her parents had multiple successful tech startups – a fact that played a significant role in her educational and professional upbringing. “Seeing them everyday taught me that startups are extremely hard with many sacrifices and commitments. You spend years without vacations, miss out on family weddings, and spend less time with your loved ones. At the same your startup vision drives you everyday. You become extremely efficient in everything you do.”
Prior to EasilyDo, Hetal worked with Nortel and Microsoft for significant periods of time. She then went on to join Nuance Communications in Sunnyvale, California where she spent 4 years before deciding to create EasilyDo.
“There is always some apprehension when you are about to leave a stable job and move to a completely new venture with all of one or two people to start with.” But Hetal lucked out – with serial entrepreneur and co-founder Mikael Berner on one side, her extremely supportive husband Dushyant on the other, the transition seemed easy.
They started in January 2011 with a team of four with office space at the venture capitalist firm, USVP on Sandhill Road, Menlo Park. Since then, the two have raised a Series A, and moved into their own office in Mountain View, CA (with a team in Asia as well). “We are now a tight knit team of 25+ and love working with each other. The whole idea of working in a startup is to work really closely for long hours with people you enjoy creating things with… EasilyDo is that place for me! Motivate your team. Leaders who are loved by their team can get wonders done.”
According to Hetal, they believe that most consumers in the world who have a smartphone are hyper connected to their emails, calendars, contacts, social networks. But this hyper connectivity is starting to overwhelm with digital clutter and now people are looking for ways to curb the number of apps and sites they interact with on a daily basis. “Just because you travelled one airline, you don’t want to download their app to get travel alerts about gates and delays. This is where a proactive smart assistant like EasilyDo comes in.”
This mobile application, available for iPhone and Android, allows one to get the relevant information about their day, based on their calendar, email and social networks. It then proactively creates simple tasks for you so you no longer need to sift through multiple applications to plan your day. A connected user is interested in staying up to date with all their productivity apps like email and calendar but also want to be perceived socially connected on networks like Facebook and Twitter.
EasilyDo is available on the mobile App Stores for users to download. “When we launched EasilyDo, a smart assistant was not a concept that was easily understood by consumers, but in the last few months we have started seeing a change in the right direction,” she adds. EasilyDo has been in the top categories for apps in many countries over the past year since its launch. The team has not declared their user numbers but revealed to have just completed their ~48 millionth task, saving their users 50+ years in time.
“We believe every single smartphone one day will have a smart assistant app helping them navigate their day! EasilyDo is a leader in this space and we hope to help a large segment of those connected consumers,” says Hetal.