The New Z in Zenefits

September 21, 2017

Category: Zenefits

Zenefits: The People Platform

Today Zenefits hosts SHIFT: The Culture Conference, our annual user conference and mind meld of some of the most brilliant thinkers on the changing world of work, the importance of culture, and the employee experience.

This is also an important day for the future of Zenefits. To become the technology backbone for the entire benefits industry, we must link best-in-class brokers, carriers, companies, and employees together on our employee-centric people platform. To that end, we announced that we’re opening up our benefits platform to power brokers for the first time. We’re also introducing our new brand strategy that helps drive our new employee-first strategy.

At the start of this year, we began an initiative to quantifiably discover what the Zenefits brand meant to the industry – the true market perception, what we’re known for and what we’re not known for, and should we change our name in light of the new strategic direction we were considering.

Let’s be honest, we went through a lot in 2016, and many of us thought that a name change might be in order. Rather than make a subjective decision, we turned to data in a process that collected thousands of data points from current customers, decision makers, employees, and influencers.  

What We Learned

We learned three important things about the Zenefits brand:

  1. We Innovate: While we’re known for saucy headlines in Silicon Valley, the rest of the nation actually knows us for something else. That something else is innovation – innovation that has advanced the industry.
  2. Only 7% Know Us: We learned that the majority of the market actually doesn’t even know about us yet. We clearly have a huge opportunity and a lot of education to do.
  3. The Market is Confused: Interestingly, we learned that the market is full of confusing messages – including our own – that simply do not resonate with buyers. We also learned that our visual brand identity was not doing a good enough job of differentiating us.

While our initial goal was to learn about the Zenefits brand, what we really learned was a lot more. We learned that the world of work is changing. Not just for HR pro’s, it’s also changing for business leaders and employees too – across companies of all sizes and industries. We realized that as we’re designing software to empower and enhance the employee experience, a fundamental shift in the world of work is underway – driven by digital transformation and the talent economy. Moreover, customers made it very clear to us that they’re looking to Zenefits to be their partner in this changing world of work.

We also learned about the power of resilience.  There was surprising strength in our name that we ourselves had overlooked and underestimated. We learned about the strength of having survived some tough times, the strength of overcoming adversity, the strength of owning our story, and building upon and learning from our past.

In It Together

Our new brand promise is “In It Together.” In it together as employees. In it together with our customers. In it together with our expanding ecosystem of partners, including brokers, carriers, and our technology platform partners. This is our new mantra.

It Starts From Within

A successful brand strategy and rebranding initiative must start from within. The nucleus of a brand is the people who power it – their values, purpose, and mission. It’s how they prioritize work, it’s how they make decisions, and it’s what decisions they actually make. It’s how the team behaves when the leaders are away. After all, it’s the people that make our products, deliver our services, and ultimately manifest the brand. We’re committed to walking the talk and holding each other accountable to delivering on our new brand promise. With this intention, I’m also excited to introduce you to ZenNation – one team, one dream.

If you have a moment to watch this short video about our new brand, we’d love your feedback.

I’d like to personally thank all of our customers with whom we co-developed our new brand. In addition to their input before, during, and after the process, they also helped us with the making of this video. We look forward to being your partner in the changing world of work. We are, In It Together.

Find me at @kmarasco or


Kevin leads marketing and brand at Zenefits. A technology and HR veteran, Kevin brings two decades of marketing leadership experience in human resources and talent management to his role. Prior to Zenefits he served as CMO at HireVue, Vice President of Brand and Digital Marketing at Taleo (acquired by Oracle), and SVP Marketing and Sales Support at Vurv Technology. Kevin is the co-founder of an innovative sports-tech startup in stealth mode.

Category: Zenefits

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