5 Top Employee Coaching Software Platforms for Managers

Ben Goodey
Published on 
April 22, 2024
Ben is an HR enthusiast & researcher with an obsession with creating human-centred content.
I asked our People Science experts to help me choose five of the best employee coaching softwares. Here are the results. For each, we'll show you what customers think, how they work, and their value for employee coaching.

The most successful teams in sports history weren’t successful because of star talent alone. 

They were successful because they had a coach who could get the best out of every player, every single game

Think Sir Alex Ferguson, who turned the Manchester United Football Club into the most successful team in the Premier League. Sure, he had star players on his roster, but talent without great coaching easily goes to waste. 

It’s the same in business. 

Managers who don’t know how to get the most from the talent and potential of their direct reports hurt organizational performance. Managers who do, help it.

But few managers have the skills or support to be effective coaches. That’s why they need an employee coaching software.

To help you find one, we’ve put together this list of the top 5 on the market. 

Jump ahead:
  1. Impact: 3 Reasons You Need Employee Coaching Software 
  2. Analysis: 3 Key Considerations Factors When Buying Software
  3. Review: 5 Best Employee Coaching Software Platforms

Three Reasons Why You Need Employee Coaching Software in 2024

In a nutshell:

  1. Coaching is the surest way to improve employee performance (and we can prove it).
  2. Employees adapt faster to organizational change, technological advancements (hello, Generative AI), and shifting priorities when they have a supportive manager.
  3. Continuous coaching and career development keep the employees you can’t afford to lose.

Let's look at each of these points in more depth.

Reason #1: Coaching improves employee performance—unlike formal training.

Research shows mentoring and career counseling from a supervisor is a definitive predictor of success. 

Traditional training courses on the other hand fall short—not bringing any significant effects to the employee or the organization.

But how do you get your managers to mentor and coach effectively? The easiest, most cost-effective way is to provide them with an employee coaching software. 

This approach yields a better ROI than formal training, as it’s more adaptable and continuous. Your managers will be equipped to give their team direction, coach them to capitalize on their strengths, and help them work through their weaknesses. 

Ultimately, employee coaching is part of a wider performance enablement strategy, where managers are given the tools to: 

  • help their teams set goals aligned to business aims.
  • have more meaningful conversations in 1:1s.
  • deliver feedback regularly and in a way that prompts genuine development.
Google improved the performance of underperforming managers by 75% with their coaching initiative, Project Oxygen.  This multi-year project was designed to offer granular, hands-on guidance on engineers. Read more on Harvard Business Review.

Reason #2: Employees adapt faster to everything thrown their way (from shifts in tech to organizational change)

When was the last time a quarter went to plan? Where goal posts didn’t move, a new development in Generative AI didn’t tempt you to change processes, or a team wasn’t reshuffled in some way? 

It’s the nature of working in a scale-up. Resilience and adaptability in a team is what keeps the business moving forward despite constant change. Those are skills that get developed and enhanced with the help of employee coaching tools.

Given the disruption of the last few years, where tech layoffs were abundant and ‘do more with less’ was on every exec’s lips, organization’s could have benefited from employee coaching a lot sooner. 

“I was at a company last year that was experiencing economic pressure. They ended up delaying salary raises, paused promotions, the whole lot. That combined with a bad manager led to the entire marketing team quitting within weeks of each other. I can’t help but think how different it would have been if we’d had a good manager to coach us through those trying times and help us adapt to the circumstances.”—Melissa M. 29, Content Marketer

Reason #3: Continuous coaching and career development help retain your most valuable employees (and keep them loyal)

Two separate studies (1 & 2) prove employee coaching and development are responsible for improving employee satisfaction and organizational commitment.

With the costs of replacing top talent soaring up to 4x an employee’s salary, that loyalty and satisfaction is pertinent to organizational success. 

After all, why should you spend time and money replacing talent when you could keep them and improve their performance by investing in an employee coaching platform? It just doesn’t make sense. 

For instance, we found that organizations that use our employee coaching platform, Mesh.ai, increase their top performer retention rates by 3x within 18 months.

Don’t waste another dime on replacing talent you should keep. 

Find an employee coaching software to keep talent longer, increase high-performer density, and empower managers to lead. 

But not all employee coaching tools are created equal. To help you find the best one, we turned to our People Science Team for help. 

Quick Analysis: 3 Factors to Look for in an Employee Coaching Software Platform

We asked our People Science team what to look for in an employee coaching software that actually improves employee performance. 

a bio of an expert from Mesh we interviewed for this article named Gaurav Chaubey

Factor 1: Provides employee insights for managers to coach and improve performance

Most coaching happens in 1:1 meetings. It’s a time where employees can bring up problems, talk through what skills they want to work on, and share progress. 

Managers need to go into these meetings with an overview of employee’s performance, current capabilities, goals, and feedback the employee has received (or not received) in the past. 

An effective employee coaching software will equip your managers with this information, providing a 360-degree view of employee performance. 

Factor 2: “Nudges” managers to give real-time feedback and support to their team

Managers need coaching just as much, if not more, than their direct reports. It’s their performance that unleashes or suppresses team performance. 

One key area for improvement is timely feedback. Most managers are guilty of giving feedback 6 months of a year down the line, but by then it’s too late to take corrective action.

Instead, managers should give continuous feedback and support to employees. This ensures they have the resources they need to meet and exceed their goals, exactly when they need it.   

The best way to coach managers on this is through “nudges”. Nudges are small, subtle reminders that can positively influence people’s decisions and actions. The “nudge theory” as a whole has been proven to be effective for building positive habits in people.

The best employee coaching software comes with built-in “nudges” where an AI prompts managers to provide continuous feedback to their teams. The software should also nudge other actions, such as checking in on goals and scheduling 1:1s. 

Over time, these nudges help drive positive change in managers without affecting morale or productivity. 

Factor 3: Helps managers improve how they coach and support every direct report

Remember how I said most managers lack the skills required to coach? That’s because 82% of managers become managers without any formal training.

To counter that, you need an employee coaching software that teaches managers how to coach their teams. 

We find the most effective way is when the platform uses an AI coach to demonstrate what ‘good’ looks like when it comes to feedback, goal setting, and performance reviews. 

The software should be able to pick up where the manager is falling short and make suggestions for them to improve.

“Good managers are the difference between high-performing teams and under-performing groups of individuals; between projects that get done and those that don’t; between organizations that succeed and those that fail.”—CMI 2023 Good Managers Report

In the rest of this article, we’ll discuss how Mesh (our performance enablement software) excels in the above areas. 

We’ll also look at four other employee coaching platforms to help you make a more informed decision.

The 5 Best Employee Coaching Software Platforms - Summary

In a nutshell, here are the 5 best employee coaching software platforms we'll review in-depth today:

  1. Mesh - A Great Employee Coaching Software Platform For Turning Managers into Coaches
  2. Trakstar - A Great Employee Coaching Software Platform For Putting Employees on Learning Paths
  3. CoachHub - A Great Employee Coaching Software Platform Connecting Employees with External Coaches
  4. Spoke - A Great Employee Coaching Software Platform For Encouraging Employees to Practice their Skills
  5. Waggle - A Great Employee Coaching Software Platform For Leadership Coaching

1. Mesh - Best Employee Coaching Software for Turning Managers into Effective Coaches

Mesh is a Performance Enablement Platform that makes employee coaching simple and effective. 

Managers can use the tool to:

  • Set and track goals for each individual team member in alignment with business needs and their personal development goals
  • Check in with the team to see if they’re on track in meeting goals in their current and/or target roles 
  • Schedule 1:1s and use insights from past meetings, praise, and advice to enhance employee performance 
  • Give instant written feedback through Slack or Microsoft Teams

Employees are coached by the tool, too. They’ll learn how to give great feedback, set SMART goals, and improve core capabilities. That’s because there’s an AI feature feeding them helpful information at the moment of need—so that the learning sticks.

However, unlike most tools, Mesh doesn’t rely on “good managers” to be useful for coaching employees. Instead, it:

  • Improves manager effectiveness via nudges, our AI coaching copilot, and other modern techniques. 
  • Continuously prompts peer-to-peer feedback and better manager coaching to enable employees to get better at core skills.

It’s the ideal tool for HR teams who want their people—managers and direct reports alike— to not only know what to do to be high-performers, but actually do it.

Let’s see how Mesh stacks up against the three factors we outlined earlier:

→ Factor 1: How Mesh provides employee insights for managers to coach and improve performance

With Mesh, managers have everything they need to come prepared for their next 1:1 meeting.

They can see what was discussed last time, what feedback their direct report has received recently, what goals they’ve progressed on, and capabilities they’ve developed. 

→ Factor 1: How Mesh provides employee insights for managers to coach and improve performance

Armed with this information, managers can prepare talking points and think through how they can best support their team members. 

→ Factor 2: How Mesh nudges managers to take action in real-time to help their team

Embedding the behaviors of a coach is effortless for managers who use Mesh—they don’t even need to login to the platform to be reminded of coaching actions they should take. 

Mesh nudges managers through Slack and Microsoft teams, making sure tasks that help their teams perform better get completed, such as giving feedback, updating goals, and scheduling regular 1:1

→ Factor 3: How Mesh helps managers improve how they coach every direct report

Mesh uses an AI coach called Maven to help managers become great coaches. 

Rather than leave effective management to chance, Maven shows managers how to write feedback, set goals, and deliver performance reviews. 

Mesh’s AI also transcribes 1:1 conversations and documents action items, freeing the manager up to be present and responsive to the needs of their employee. 

Pros, Cons, and User Reviews


  • AI co-pilot, Maven, coaches managers on how to give effective feedback
  • Managers are more likely to take the actions of a coach such as: set up regular 1:1s, have meaningful development conversations, and give impactful feedback
  • Focuses on more than coaching as a driver of performance with features for goal setting, engagement surveys, and performance reviews 


  • Requires a shift from traditional performance management to performance enablement that some organizations might struggle with
  • Volume of data, insights, and notifications could become overwhelming for users
  • Users are unable to download documents and data from the platform 

User review (HR perspective): 

“Mesh's UI is intuitive, making it easy to navigate and manage performance effectively. With comprehensive features like 360-degree, 1:1, peer reviews, it offers a holistic approach to performance management. The exceptional support the customer success team provides is noteworthy and commendable. They are always there to assist, ensuring a seamless experience.”

User review (employee perspective): 

“Everyone should use Mesh. We get reviews and feedback from our manager. We can set goals that will help us grow. We get ratings from our manager based on our performance. And we can set one-to-one with the manager and discuss.”

Want to see more? Head to our G2 profile.

Mesh Pricing

Our pricing is designed to meet and scale to your organization’s coaching and performance needs. 

That’s why there’s more than one package to choose from: Base, Premium, and Enterprise.

  • Base: $4 per user, per month
  • Premium: $7 per user, per month
  • Enterprise: Custom pricing 

You can see what features are included in each:

2. Trakstar - Best Employee Coaching Software for Putting Employees on Learning Paths

Trakstar is an employee coaching software with performance management features. The aim of it is to help managers lead more effectively by giving the manager access to a suite of tools that fuels performance. 

Its strengths lie in its comprehensive learning management system and the ability to tailor career pathways to individual employee needs.

You can also create interactive training modules like quizzes, surveys, and videos, using one of its tools—Trakstar Learn.

The Trakstar platform is suited best to organizations who want structured learning and development as part of their coaching initiative. 

While that can be risky given how ineffective traditional training is, if managers use those learning paths strategically and point their people to the right resources it can be successful.

Trakstar Pros, Cons, and User Reviews


  • A built in LMS with the platform
  • Performance management features are included such as performance reviews and goal setting 

Review from a Trakstar user:

I like the options available to choose a learning module that fits your current and future goals. It also allows you to learn in real-time depending on what project you may be working on.


  • Doesn’t state pricing explicitly, leaving HR leaders unsure if they can afford the tool
  • Users have expressed frustration with the experience on the platform (too many pop-ups, difficulty receiving emails, etc.)
  • The platform can be overwhelming and underdeveloped because it has multiple use cases (LMS, Performance management, applicant tracking)

Review from a Trakstar user:

What do you dislike about Trakstar Learn? Difficult to load powerpoint presentations (animated or linked graphics). Limited flexibility with layout and brandin. Pop ups constantly occuring for invites to webinars and sessions. Email invites to trainees often get blocked by their servers. Limited customer support department for large issues.

Trakstar Pricing

Trakstar does not publicly share its pricing. 

3. CoachHub - Best Employee Coaching Software for Connecting Employees with External Coaches

CoachHub is a digital coaching platform which connects employees or managers with the right coaches and training plans. 

According to CoachHub, digital training is more effective than traditional workplace training as it creates a change that sticks through reflective learning and actionable strategies. All of this fosters a growth mindset within an individual that lasts beyond the coaching period. 

Its  unique proposition is its global network of 3,500+ certified coaches in 70 countries, with coaching sessions available in over 60 languages. 

This external perspective can be invaluable for personal development and overcoming specific challenges.

With CoachHub, either a manager or an employee can select the coach they want to work with (pre chosen by AI), schedule coaching sessions, go through the training, and measure impact. 

A word of caution though: The reliance on external coaches won’t suit organizations looking to strengthen internal coaching capabilities among their managers. 

CoachHub Pros, Cons, and User Reviews


  • You can access external coaches who are experts at what they do
  • Employees of any level from entry to exec can get coached 
  • Comes with a CoachHub learning academy 


  • Doesn’t strengthen internal coaching skills among managers
  • Accessing a network of external coaches can be more expensive than utilizing internal resources
  • External coaching approach may not align with or fully integrate into existing company culture

Review from a CoachHub user:

We have received some positive initial feedback on CoachHub from our participants about how they are being supported personally and professionally. We believe in the power of personalized coaching, and have worked with a local network of coaches previously. CoachHub’s trusted network and quality assurance measures are a benefit for us. It’s great to know that our leaders are getting the best possible support.

CoachHub Pricing

Unfortunately, CoachHub does not publicize its pricing. 

4. Spoke - Best Employee Coaching Software for Encouraging Employees to Practice their Skills

Spoke® makes it easy for managers to give feedback, encourage practice, and follow employee progress. 

Managers can use Spoke's "Write with AI" feature to deliver structured feedback in different formats, such as SBI (Situation-Behavior-Impact), GROW (Goal, Reality, Options, Way Forward), or customized templates. This helps ensure feedback is not only timely but also well-organized and meaningful.

Another unique feature of Spoke is AI video analysis and simulations where managers can practice their communication and feedback skills before interacting with employees. 

Spoke also facilitates effective coaching interactions by setting a baseline for employee onboarding, skill development, and proficiencies. This helps employees understand their own performance and areas of improvement, aligning with the company's expectations and their personal career goals.

Spoke Pros, Cons, and User Reviews


  • AI-powered improvement suggestions on how managers give feedback to employees
  • Facilitates manager development over time
  • Helps onboard employees faster

Review from a Spoke user:

Being able to schedule modules and plan for new employees starting is super helpful.


  • Some users reported unintuitive UI
  • Users reported difficulty being onboarded and getting used to the platforms uploading feature

Review from a Spoke user:

I wish the UI was a bit more intuitive. I think it could be improved with a good first time user experience.

Spoke Pricing

Spoke hasn’t provided public pricing information to its website or any software review platforms. 

5. Waggle AI - Best Employee Coaching Software for Leadership Coaching

Waggle is an employee coaching software where the manager is the employee in question. It’s designed to help managers improve the way they coach their teams through AI features that analyze and give feedback on manager performance.

The AI listens in on meetings, takes notes, lists action items, and gives feedback on how managers can better lead the team. It also creates custom agendas for 1:1s, standups, and more.

Managers can also track their work and their employees work through Slack reminders and private notes. 

Similar to Mesh, Waggle also nudges managers on what they need to do to provide their team the best support. 

Waggle Pros, Cons, and User Reviews


  • Really focuses on manager development with real-time skills analysis and suggestions taken from calls 
  • Has an AI feature that coaches managers to act on insights and improve their relationships with direct reports
  • Provides support for managers when prepping for meetings and following through on action items


  • Lacks other features that help managers be more effective such as goal setting, continuous feedback functionality, and more.
  • Only coaches managers, not other employees
  • Still a relatively new tool to the market with developing features

Review from a Waggle user:

"Waggle provided me with exactly what I needed to help ensure I was prepared to have productive conversations with my direct reports with minimal time investment. I've noticed both me and my direct reports leave our meetings happier and with more clarity."—Cathy, Principal Advisor at The Behavioural Insights Team

Waggle Pricing

Waggle costs $30 per month, per manager. If you want to use it for more of your team you can get a custom package with custom pricing. 

Summary: 5 Top Employee Coaching Software 

Here’s a summary of the 5 tools we discussed in this article:

A summary list of the top employee coaching software
Frequently Asked Questions
About the Author
Ben Goodey
HR Content Strategist
Ben is an HR enthusiast & researcher with an obsession with creating human-centred content.

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