Zoho on Monday launched Zoho People, a human capital management tool that could be quite useful for mid-sized businesses. The move also shows how Zoho intends to reach well beyond its online office suite, which is really just a set of starter apps for broader enterprise ambitions.
Zoho People (screenshots, video demo), currently in beta, allows companies to track employees, forms like holiday leave and expense reports, recruit people and approve typical HR functions such as performance appraisal, salary changes and disciplinary actions. Perusing the application reveals a SaaS HR suite that's customizable (gallery right).
For me, Zoho People raises one big question: Why hasn't Google acquired Zoho yet? Sure the spreadsheets and word processing overlap with Google Docs and Spreadsheets, but Zoho has turned into something much more enterprise friendly. Something like Zoho People--not to mention its CRM and other services--could be a fine tuck-in for Google Apps. As Garett Rogers notes, Google could bundle a bunch of enterprise apps on an appliance and make a viable run at Microsoft. Zoho would fit into that plan nicely.
What makes Zoho People notable is this: It's a move toward the "M" in SMB. This application would definitely be handy for a larger company and could prod folks into trying more Zoho applications such as CRM and its online database (also see Zoli Erdos' take and Dan Farber's take) Zoho said that pricing for Zoho People is yet-to-be-determined, but the company is pondering admin pricing of about $50 a month. The price for other users such as employees and managers would be about $50 a year.
At that price, a company could give Zoho's HCM app a spin. Zoho has more details on the application and screenshots on its site.
Here's a look at that recruitment feature:
And some of the available forms.