U.K.-based HR startup Zelt has raised $3.5 million in seed funding, which it plans to use to step up its marketing and serve a growing roster of larger, international clients.

“Until now, companies needed to piece together a number of different tools in order to run even basic people operations due to the limited scope of the existing tools available,” said company founder and CEO Chris Priebe. “This made it difficult for companies to take a holistic approach, not to mention facilitate automation and self-service options.”

Founded in 2021 and headquartered in London, Zelt says it offers companies an “integrated, automated and intuitive” system to manage HR, IT and financial operations across the employee lifecycle, enabling them to consolidate vendors and automate tasks involving employees, such as HR, payroll, onboarding and expenses.

Zelt adds that consolidating technologies within its platform alleviates the need for companies to pass employee data between different systems, bolstering data security and governance, while the use of automation and a self-service platform reduces the burden of administration.

The seed round was led by Episode 1 Ventures and Village Global, with participation from such business angels as Charlie Songhurst, Mandeep Singh, Felix Leuschner and Daniel Hegarty.

“Chris has flipped conventional thinking on its head and prioritised the employee journey right from the start,” said Paul McNabb, partner at Episode 1 Ventures.

“Zelt has worked out what services every employee needs and puts them on a timeline that makes the most sense for the user. Onboard in minutes with the right device and payroll configuration, set up software tools and schedule workflows and then add to that as the relationship evolves.”

“In the U.S., many of our portfolio companies have already replaced their HRIS [human resources information system] with a more powerful platform, such as Rippling, and seen immediate customer ROI,” added Anne Dwane, co-founder and partner at Village Global.

“This trend is now spreading across the globe, and Zelt is one of the best products we have seen in the market. So we are extremely keen to support Chris as he continues to further improve the product and scale internationally.”

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