Side Projects

At Hotjar we support and believe in the importance of personal side projects. It’s a great way to continue learning and pursue one’s passions. Hotjar has no interest in stopping or interfering with your personal side projects. Here's some information on our take on side projects.

Our ethos and values:

  • Being a digital business, intellectual property is very important and valuable to the organisation. Given Hotjar's wide functionality it’s very easy to not realise what is (and what will be, based on our vision) valuable and therefore necessary to be protected.
  • Security is a priority for us. Our Acceptable Use Policy for Hotjar Systems & Hardware is guided by our commitment to protect our customer’s data, because of it we cannot allow you to work on personal projects using Hotjar resources (this includes your Hotjar laptop and any of our systems).
  • We believe transparency and trust are the best way to avoid conflict. By communicating early and openly about any side work being done we can avoid misunderstandings around the interpretation of what falls under Hotjar’s intellectual property or not.
  • At times we might have to say ‘No’. There may be cases where you may think there are no risks but it’s not the case from a business point of view. This is why it’s critical to be open and transparent. Whatever the case, we will always provide you the reason(s) for this decision. Here are a couple of examples where we would say no:
    • A developer wants to build a free tool that tracks newsletter signups on a blog. This is something we plan to do on our roadmap under ‘goal / event tracking’. Saying yes to this could be risky to Hotjar from an IP point of view.
    • A marketer wants to team up with a friend (developer) to create a tool that does remote usability testing. This is something we plan to do on our roadmap so it would be seen as a potential conflict.
  • We believe that it’s incredibly stressful to have 2 ‘roles’ or jobs at one go. For this reason we discourage being involved in side projects that have commercial intent (revenue generating) or involve committing a lot of time or being accountable against deadlines. If you feel you have a great idea that you want to pursue we’d love to help get you started – and even introduce you to investors, advisors etc. Just ping David directly to talk about this if you ever feel it’s time to do so and we’ll figure out a transition plan to get you where you want to go.


  1. If you are in the interview process with Hotjar and/or working on a side project when you join Hotjar please send an email to your hiring manager / head of department (director or VP) to briefly explain the project, any tech used and the commercial nature of it (if any).
  2. If you start to work on a new side project while working at Hotjar we recommend you send an email to your head of department (director or VP) as early as possible. In the email briefly explain the project, any tech used and the commercial nature of it (if any).
  3. If the commercial intent or the effort required for a project changes over time we suggest you update your head of department (director or VP) as soon as possible.
  4. If you have an idea you wish to pursue or you want to develop your side project into a business send an email to Mohannad (Hotjar CEO) and your head of department (director or VP) to start discussing a transition phase and how we can help you launch a successful business.