I first met Jeff Tangney in late 2010 when he pitched Doximity as a network for healthcare professionals. Jeff’s idea for Doximity was based on learnings from his time as Co-Founder of Epocrates, one of the first productivity applications for physicians. During his time at Epocrates, Jeff discovered how difficult it could be for physicians to find other doctors to refer patients to and how important these referrals were in order to deliver the best patient care. When he left Epocrates, Jeff was inspired to create a company that would help solve this problem.
Jeff teamed up with Shari Buck and Nate Gross to get Doximity off the ground. Shari is adept at turning vision into reality and headed up Doximity’s product and engineering organizations. Nate, as the only doctor on the founding team, brought a deep understanding of the clinical world to the group. Together, they formed a powerful trio — Jeff with the founding vision, Shari with the ability to craft amazing products, and Nate as the continuous voice of the customer. When my partners and I met this founding team, learned more about their mission, and imagined how much of an impact they could make on healthcare, we knew we wanted to be part of their journey. We were lucky to have the chance to lead Doximity’s Series A in early 2011.
The founders were clear even before we partnered with them that in order to fulfill their mission, they would put healthcare workers’ needs first, even if that meant it might take a while to generate revenue. I recall a phone call I had with Jeff when Doximity was raising its Series A during which he was upfront about the company’s priorities. Even though we did not know when revenue might materialize, Jeff's insistence on focusing first on building the best possible platform for healthcare workers convinced us to invest at the earliest stage possible.
Jeff, Shari, and Nate’s singular focus on making a real difference for doctors and their patients was (and is still today) extremely rare in the world of healthcare technology. The core insight that Doximity’s founders had was that if you want to build software that really works in the healthcare industry, you have to build something that people actually want to use and you have to find a way to make it easy for them to adopt it themselves. Most of the technology that healthcare workers utilize has been foisted upon them by the practice or hospital they work for. That technology is often clunky and slow because it isn’t purpose-built for making healthcare worker’s lives easier, but rather for tasks like billing or record-keeping.
Figuring out which products healthcare workers actually wanted wasn’t always easy. Rather than making decisions about what to build in isolation, the philosophy Doximity took to product-building was one of relentless iteration. The team added new features based on user feedback that it gathered at annual advisory board meetings which included dozens of doctors. I sat in on nearly all of these meetings and watched as many of the product ideas the Doximity team came in with ended up on the cutting room floor. Instead, ideas that came from doctors themselves often rose to the top of the priority list and made it into the product roadmap. I’ve never seen a company place more emphasis on end-user product feedback than I’ve seen at Doximity. And I know from speaking with the doctors who use Doximity that they feel the same way.
"I’ve never seen a company place more emphasis on end-user product feedback than I’ve seen at Doximity."
It’s been ten years since our partnership with Doximity began. It’s now clear that Jeff, Shari, and Nate’s dedication to the healthcare workers who care for our communities has paid off. Today, Doximity is used by over 80% of all U.S. doctors, 50% percent of nurse practitioners and physician assistants, and over 90% of graduating medical students. While patient referrals were the original inspiration for Doximity, the platform has since expanded to include a range of other productivity-boosting and career-enhancing features—from secure messaging and telehealth applications to a comprehensive medical newsfeed, job search offerings, and more. And, as we had always hoped, Doximity’s success with building truly useful solutions for healthcare workers has translated into a fast growing, profitable business.
Today marks the beginning of Doximity’s next chapter as it becomes a public company. We could not be more proud of the Doximity team as it reaches this milestone. At Emergence, we aim to be the most important partner to the companies that are changing the way the world works. We are grateful to have been able to support the company along its journey to an IPO, and look forward to continuing to partner with the Doximity team as they continue to empower healthcare professionals.
Congratulations Jeff, Shari, Nate, and the entire Doximity team!
Read more about Doximity’s IPO on CNBC "Doximity surges 69% in NYSE debut after IPO values health-tech company at $4.6 billion."
"Our team is incredibly proud of Founder & CEO Jeff Tangney, Co-Founders Shari Buck, and Dr. Nate Gross, and the whole team that worked together to reach this important milestone."
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