20 European start-ups ferrying us towards the future of work

28 Jan 2020

Image: © Uladzik Kryhin/Stock.adobe.com

The future of work is becoming a not-so-distant reality, and the founders of these start-ups are making sure they’re ahead of the curve.

Work as we know it is on the brink of a revolution, and these 20 start-ups are helping us get ready. From sourcing the right people for specific roles, to taking care of the administrative and personal requirements we have for an active, mobile workforce – and more – these companies will have us covered.


ConX is a platform for construction contractors to search jobs, manage tenders and complete take-offs. Headquartered in Sydney where it was founded by Dublin native Annie Slattery and her husband Keith Moore in 2015, ConX has expanded to a team of 10. Slattery recently won Australia’s top award for women in tech start-ups, and this year the company hopes to raise $2.5m and launch in the US.

Get the Shifts

Temporary staffing start-up Get the Shifts was launched in 2016 by founder Hannah Wrixon and since then has been supporting bars, restaurants and festivals, among other hospitality events. Based in Clare, it helps patrons source quality, experienced workers in their area for irregular shifts by matching employers with people seeking temporary work.


Need a unique co-working space for your team? Then turn to TurnedSee, a venue search tool helping users find the right facilities for their objectives. TurnedSee users can access bespoke content in a matter of seconds, giving them insights into venues such as co-working spaces, as well as pubs, sporting venues, museums and more for event planning. Founded in 2018 by Pauline Kwasniak in Dublin, its mission is to make people scouting locations for work and events aware of local, unconventional space choices for free. TurnedSee currently has 120 corporate users (including Fortune 100 companies) and hundreds of venues listed on the site.

Site Passport

SaaS construction procurement and compliance platform Site Passport has been operating since 2019, providing a space for main contractors and developers to source subcontractors and suppliers. It’s based in Dublin’s Dún Laoghaire, where its CEO Rob Fox is passionate about using blockchain to disrupt the construction industry. Through its services, the company also seeks to enhance reputation and reduce risk in the sector.

Two men are sitting at a work desk and interacting.

SitePassport office, Dún Laoghaire. Image: SitePassport


Working to make coaching more accessible to employees at all career levels is CoachHub. The Berlin-founded company strives to bring services traditionally only available to top executives to wider groups. It has raised €21m to date, from investors including HV Holtzbrinck Ventures, Partech, Speedinvest, RTP Global and Signals VC.


We all know the future of work will need sufficient childcare to enable the workforce, but elder care is also a growing issue. Enter Grandpal, which works to combat old-age loneliness by bringing happiness and companionship to the elderly. As of October 2019, the platform had delivered a total of 800 hours of companionship, taking pressure off of strained carer networks with the support of its volunteers.

The Grandpal app was set up by Brian Daly and William Hollacsek in 2018 when Daly, studying and working in Dublin, lived with his grandmother and was inspired by the tangible impact his companionship had on her quality of life. The platform can connect people who have spare time each week with a local older person who could benefit from the additional one-on-one time.


Committed to helping companies across all sectors to process invoices more efficiently is Billie. It was founded in 2017 by Dr Christian Grobe and Dr Matthias Knecht to minimise the administrative siloes that slow down payments for B2B services.

Based in Berlin, Billie raised €30m in Series B funding last year in a round led by Creandum. Speedinvest, Rocket Internet’s GFC and Picus also invested in this round.

Two men in jeans and dark T-shirts stand in a bright office.

Matthias Knecht and Christian Grobe. Image: Billie


Cork-based start-up Workvivo has been offering companies an internal communications platform since 2017, and since then it has been put to work in more than 40 companies. The technology allows employees to interact with an activity feed, meaning they can share content, commend their colleagues, and publish articles and events.

In late 2019 Workvivo secured a major investment from Eric Yuan, a US tech entrepreneur and the founder of Zoom.

Personal Carer

Personal Carer was founded on the experiences of Austen Burns, who studied computing at Queen’s University and has a master’s degree in marketing. Burns has cerebral palsy and, during his studies, he found it difficult to find a carer who was suited to his needs and interests. So, Burns set up the online forum in Belfast for people to connect with carers in four steps. Today, the platform has more than 500 experienced carers available.


Trezeo was founded in 2016 by Garrett Cassidy and Flavien Charlon to help self-employed people bring greater reliability to unsteady incomes. For people in such sectors as taxi driving and gig work, for example, Trezeo can be used to average out their pay into a recurring weekly wage.

The company is planning European expansions beyond its current offices in Dublin’s Digital Exchange and London. To date, it has raised €776,000 from investors, including €30,000 from NDRC’s Investor Day in 2017.

Koru Kids

Accessible childcare is a priority for many workers today – something recognised by Koru Kids. The London-based start-up has built a platform to connect nannies and childcare professionals with parents seeking childcare.

It was founded in 2016 and recently raised £10m in funding, with investors including Atomico, AlbionVC, Global Founders Capital, Forward Partners, JamJar, Samos and 7 Percent.


Wendy Oke set up TeachKloud in a bid to fill the gap in the software market for those working in early childhood education. Her proposed solution draws on cloud technology, machine learning and UX design to suggest educational and safety goals that are dependent on the age, stage and needs of each child.

Based in Cork, TeachKloud has only just begun to hire people to work alongside Oke, who is the sole founder. And just this month, Oke announced having raised €750,000, with investment led by Frontline Ventures, which will drive recruitment and expansion into overseas markets.


Pento was founded by Jonas Bøgh Larsen and Emil Hagbarth in Copenhagen in 2016 to help minimise the time spent on payroll, as well as the errors. Not only is it valuable to finance professionals to reduce the errors common to the job, it’s also catered towards people with no experience whatsoever in payroll.

To date, the Danish company has raised $3.5m from such investors as Futuristic.vc, Hustle Fund, Point Nine Capital, Seedcamp, and PreSeed Ventures. It also has plans to launch an office in London.


Neyber is a London-based money-lending start-up founded in 2013 by Martin Ijaha, a former Goldman Sachs technology expert. Employees availing of the service can create an account and use it to access their salary and budget in real-time, source financial advice and tools, secure loans, and consider savings and investment products.

Backed by lead investor Police Mutual, Neyber’s primary goal is to promote financial wellbeing for employees, reducing stress levels and boosting performance in the workplace.


Set on changing the trajectory of future learning is MyAccessHub, an e-learning platform teaching all employees in a company about neurodiversity.

The initial neurodiversity the MyAccessHub team is focusing on is autism awareness and equality. The platform uses virtual reality to immerse people in educational scenarios, showing them the impact of small actions on their colleagues with autism.

The start-up was founded in Kerry by Gearóid Kearney, who has been diagnosed with dyslexia and Addison’s disease, and Miriam O’Sullivan.


This Hamburg-based start-up uses AI to match freelancers to companies with complex or recurring projects. Companies can either work through a project manager on WorkGenius, or post jobs themselves with its Job Wizard function.

Founded in 2012, WorkGenius expanded into the US upon raising €8.5m in 2018. It was originally set up by co-founders Daniel Barke and Marlon Litz-Rosenzweig as Mylittlejob, a service for bringing college students together with European companies. Today, it cites the elimination of bias from hiring practices among its priorities.


Another start-up helping freelancers is Side. Founded by David Benzaken and his colleagues in Paris in 2015, it links fixed-term tasks posted by employers with freelancers. Tasks can last just for a day or for several months, and people can use the app to control where they’re working from – whether it’s from home, the local café or the office.

Through the Side app, users can apply to tasks and get a response within 24 hours. After the work is completed, they get paid directly into their bank account.

According to Crunchbase, Side has raised a total of $7.2m in funding over 2 rounds.


Juggle was founded by Romanie Thomas in 2017 to help people looking for flexible work. Based in London, the platform offers users the choice between part-time, full-time and portfolio-style work across finance and accountancy, sales and marketing, and talent and HR.

Signing up takes 20 seconds, according to its website, and involves mapping out expertise, transferable skills and priorities. Users can browse jobs on the site with access to salary details, location, and more. The company also vocalises its goal of ensuring that 50pc of business leaders are women by 2027.


Formerly BidRecruit, Occupop describes itself as an all-in-one platform to simplify and improve recruitment processes. Founded by Caroline Gleeson and David Banaghan in 2017, Occupop’s team tripled in size last year and now has operations in Ireland and the UK.

The platform allows users to cross-post jobs to multiple platforms, organise candidate groups, benefit from AI-powered CV scorers, and automate inefficient aspects of the hiring process. It also gives employers the tools to confidently set GDPR parameters and reflect on recruitment decisions through analytics.

Clear Review

Seeking to change the face of performance reviews is London-based Clear Review, which was founded by Stuart Hearn – previously a HR director at Sony and the head of a talent management consultancy.

Describing itself as 80pc about performance improvement and 20pc about measurement, the platform’s goal is to encourage better user engagement with performance management, leading to accurate insights and meaningful conversations instead of just “form-filling”.

In July 2019, it announced £2.6m in Series A funding led by AlbionVC with participation from Mercia Technologies.

Updated, 1.15pm, 29 January 2020: This article was amended to include updated funding details for CoachHub.

Updated, 12.50pm, 31 January 2020: This article was amended to clarify the co-founders of Billie.

Updated, 1.10pm, 3 February 2020: This article was amended to clarify the year Site Passport was founded as 2019 instead of 2015.

Lisa Ardill was careers editor at Silicon Republic until June 2021