Velaku Co-Founders Michael Rudnick and Susan Sanders have been working together for years – helping companies to improve internal communications and the employee experience with technology long before they started Velaku. She’s the brilliant product visionary, and he’s the operational driving force.

Their ‘ah-ha’ moment came in 2018 when they realized there was a unique opportunity to create real change for employees by leveraging Microsoft365 in a way no one else was doing, and that would deliver an online experience like what employees get outside of the workplace. Michael and Susan got to work putting their global, enterprise-scale experience into the development of a new solution.

The result? A superb SaaS workplace solution that reshapes the employee experience and the way employees interact with communications and human resources departments.

What the heck is a Velaku?

We know that a Velaku doesn’t exist in nature. But the root of name does – in the Italian word ‘vela’, meaning ‘sail.’  And that’s because both Michael & Susan are avid sailors.

Little known trivia: our product was initially launched as HRConnect365, but customers told us they liked Velaku better. Since Velaku had been our company name all along, we changed the product to match.


Driven by our philosophy that employees should be treated more like customers, our goal is quite simple (although far easier said than done): to improve the employee experience and make it as seamless and comfortable as the customer experience. And that means giving communications and HR professionals a way to engage employees that goes far beyond the decades-old use of mere intranets, portals and email.

Velaku makes it faster and easier for companies to create, deploy and distribute content and messages to employees, translating into better employee engagement and effectiveness.

“No more hoops. No more hurdles. No more friction that makes engaging with employees feel like a day at the DMV.”

Michael Rudnick

What you may not know about Michael Rudnick

A lifelong sailor and New Yorker, Michael looks forward to the oh-so-brief New England summers when he can get out on the water without needing a drysuit. Michael is also an active volunteer for the sport, as the President of the LISOT Youth Sailing Foundation and the US I420 Class Association, as well as being active at Noroton Yacht Club. Michael’s volunteerism goes way back - he was a sailing race official at the 1996 Olympics. If your life also revolves around sailboat racing, he’d be happy to talk shop.

Michael Rudnick

CEO & Co-Founder

What you may not know about Susan Sanders

Susan, who grew up in hot and landlocked Phoenix, also now spends a lot of time on the water - on the windy and chilly San Francisco Bay where she races out of San Francisco YC. She has long been an advocate of Women’s sailing, and for the past two years was part of an all-female racing crew. Her favorite part of sailing is sharing her passion and knowledge with aspiring sailors.

Susan Sanders

President, Co-Founder, Chief Technology Officer


Having worked together for over a decade, Michael and Susan have an unparalleled combination of subject matter expertise, and business and technical experience, having honed their craft as colleagues focused on communication and HR technology and portals at one of the largest global HR firms.

They have both spent their careers helping Fortune 500 organizations improve the way employees communicate, collaborate and connect using the latest digital tools and technologies.

Advisory Board

The Velaku Advisory Board is a group of experienced strategic thinkers helping transform the employee experience. They are dedicated to developing innovative solutions that help organizations reach their potential.

Each understands real business needs in this era of digital transformation and the need to revolutionize the way people work by making organizations more connected, productive and effective.

Tom Brust

Vice President, Business Development, Prudential

Jack Goodman

Principal, Jack Goodman Communications, former VP, Thomson Reuters

Madeline McMenamin

Account Director (retired), Willis Towers Watson

Donna Tanenbaum

Founder & Senior Consultant, DGT Group, former CHRO

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