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How Paperlike auto-schedules 50 meetings across a remote team

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"We run a 100% remote team in different time-zones. Reclaim helps us keep our sanity."

50

fully automated meetings

40%

average increase in productivity

6

extra hours/week for productive work

30%

work-life balance improvement

In 2017, Jan Sapper founded Paperlike with the mission of creating an iPad screen protector that replicated the feeling of a pencil on paper for digital sketching. Initially aiming to raise $4,000 in a Kickstarter campaign, Jan exceeded expectations by securing $40,000 for the German startup – discovering a massive untapped demand from creatives looking to capture ideas on the go. Today, Paperlike is serving over a million customers across the world.

Paperlike challenges

Paperlike, a screen protector company designed for creatives, was exploding in demand and needed to quickly scale out its operations. As a small but growing team spread across Europe and the U.S. – CEO Jan Sapper needed a solution to keep employees connected across time zones. 

"Every meeting happens in video calls. Suddenly, because we're all working in different places in the world at different times – it becomes very essential to be able to time manage our meetings."

Coordinating meetings across everyone’s busy calendars became increasingly difficult as their team scaled. Despite trying tools like Google Calendar and Fantastical for scheduling optimization, the Paperlike team found themselves wasting too much time in Slack threads, cross-checking calendars, and attempting to synchronize across time zones rather than actually spending time in productive meetings.

Even after successfully scheduling a meeting, inevitable conflicts would restart the whole process – incurring even more of a time cost. And if someone took PTO and forgot to reschedule their meetings, or had an unexpected personal emergency like a sick child sent home – they lost more than just that meeting time. The larger problem was ensuring these meetings didn’t entirely fall through the cracks and block the team from making the progress they needed to meet their aggressive market demand.

“We purposefully made the company distributed and online so that nobody ever sees anybody arrive or leave. Everyone's flexible, as long as they get their important stuff done.” 

Jan's vision for Paperlike prioritized flexibility and work-life balance, aiming to give employees the perfect 30-hour workweek while still growing a massively successful company. However, their existing meeting scheduling process made this impossible, leading to frustration and inefficiency across the team. Jan needed an organization-wide solution to automate meeting scheduling across his growing team.

How Reclaim helps Paperlike automate their meetings & work-life balance

  • Auto-schedules recurring meetings at the best time for all team members across their remote team, and auto-reschedules around conflicts
  • Share availability for external meetings with prioritized Scheduling Links
  • Supports company culture of work-life balance

As an automation guru, Jan started searching for meeting automation tools in 2022 and was very excited to discover that Reclaim could not only automate meeting scheduling, but improve work-life balance across his team too.

Reclaim is an AI calendar app that helps teams automatically find the best time for their meetings, tasks, habits, and breaks around their existing calendar events.

The Paperlike team quickly started automating their meetings with Reclaim. Starting with the co-founders, Jan Sapper and Sebastian Geis, who had the most hectic schedules, and then extending into their one-on-one meetings with other members of their team. 

This automation quickly evolved into 50 meetings automated across a team of just 21 people, expanding into team meeting automation when Reclaim’s Smart Meetings feature launched in April 2024. This ensured that all one-on-ones and team syncs were consistently booked at the best times for each team member – taking into consideration their working hours, time zones, and personal scheduling preferences. Reclaim’s meeting automation reduced the stress of scheduling for all employees, while keeping their collaboration and progress in check week after week.

One of the most significant meeting challenges Jan faced was making sure that key meetings with the product team or C-Suite weren't missed due to scheduling conflicts. If a leadership meeting was scheduled, but only one person ended up attending, it ultimately becomes a major cost to the company. Smart Meetings’ multi-person scheduling allowed the Paperlike team to address this issue, ensuring that crucial discussions happen at the best time for everyone so projects are always moving forward and meetings no longer fall through the cracks.

“If I simply don't show up at a meeting that I forgot to reschedule around PTO, it sucks. Now, Reclaim automates this for me so the meeting is automatically rescheduled to the next best time when I’m back. The time to collaborate is defended, and my team feels more job satisfaction because they don't have this feeling of, ‘ah, I've been ignored again’.” 

The team additionally has to juggle tons of one-off external meetings with partners and customers every week. And using Reclaim’s Scheduling Links, they’re not able to share their maximum availability through high-priority links to book these important meetings sooner. Paperlike CMO and co-founder Sebastian Geis is a super-user with 8 custom Scheduling Links in varying priorities, which can offer up lower-priority smart events as available time slots for critical meetings.

The Paperlike team also uses Decompression Time to automatically schedule breaks after all their video-conferencing meetings. This keeps them from back-to-back meetings without a chance to grab a drink, stretch their legs, or reset before the next meeting.

Jan and his team also use recurring events called Habits which automatically find the best time for regular work and personal routines around their meetings. Jan uses Habits to auto-schedule dedicated time for routine work items like morning catch up and a weekly planning session, to reduce overtime and stress. But Habits are also great for ensuring he, and the team, have time for personal priorities. For example, Jan schedules weekly activities with his daughter to make sure that time is always defended, no matter how busy the weeks get. 

Jan and the Paperlike team are now able to maximize their time together, enhance productivity outside of meetings, and improve their work-life balance with Reclaim.

Paperlike results

  • 50 fully automated recurring meetings scheduling across time zones
  • 40% average increase in productivity
  • 6 additional hours/week defended for productive work on average
  • 30% average improvement in work-life balance

Paperlike has since deployed Reclaim across all 21 employees at the company, up from their team of just 6 when they started with Reclaim in 2022. Using the simple self-serve onboarding, the Paperlike team was able to seamlessly convert 50 recurring meetings into Smart Meetings to completely transform their schedules into a fully automated scheduling system in a few clicks. On average, each Paperlike employee is now automating 2.4 recurring meetings with Reclaim

One of the biggest advantages of Reclaim was the ability to defend time on the calendar for important meetings across busy leadership teams. By scheduling around all key team members’ availability and preferences – Smart Meetings helped the Paperlike team effortlessly coordinate time to connect on pivotal discussions.

And when a conflict comes up, Paperlike's ability to auto-reschedule meetings to the next best time minimizes the risk of unproductive meetings from slowing down the team while keeping their recurring syncs on track. 

By leveraging additional AI features like Habits, the Paperlike team has experienced an average 40% increase in productivity, enabling team members to defend an extra 6 hours/week for focused, productive work – even just working an average 30-hour workweek. 

The integration of features like Decompression Time and personal Habits further empowers employee wellness, preventing burnout and fostering a healthier balance between work and personal life. Employees report a 30% increase in work-life balance using Reclaim, on average.

“I love the tool, I love how it's set up, I love the direction in which it's going” shared Jan. “It’s been a very, very valuable asset to me and my team.”

Sebastian Geis, Paperlike co-founder and CMO, echoes Jan’s sentiment, “We run a 100% remote team in different time-zones. Reclaim helps us keep our sanity.”

By automating meeting scheduling and offering tools for the Paperlike team to defend their time – Reclaim remains a cornerstone of their operations to maximize productivity and cultivate a supportive work environment for their growing organization. 

Stats

50

fully automated meetings

40%

average increase in productivity

6

extra hours/week for productive work

30%

work-life balance improvement