Case Study: Illustrate Digital
Working | Runway East

Case Study: Illustrate Digital

Runway East

17th August 2021

About Illustrate Digital

Industry: Web agency

Team size: 21-30

Runway East Location: Temple Meads

Illustrate Digital is a UX platform and engineering consultancy, focussing on UX/UI and Wordpress. It’s one of the UK’s top ten Wordpress specialist agencies.

Scott Jones, Managing Director, Illustrate Digital

How did you find out about us?

We came to know Runway East as a sort of happy accident! An employee we hired wanted somewhere to work from in Bristol as a base. We’ve since found that the city's ecosystem is really strong and we could hire great talent there, so an office in the city (our HQ is in Cardiff) has been fantastic for us. We’ve also secured a lot of work from the city as our two key markets are financial and legal services – something the city is strong in.

If we need more space, we won't be looking anywhere else.

What do you love about Runway East?

We love the great community team, they help make the vibe so good. With so much WFH these days, I genuinely feel more energised just coming into in the Bristol space, I’m motivated by the conversations around me!

Runway East just takes so much stuff off my plate, which – as a business owner – is vital. Having a virtually all inclusive package saves so much time and faff. Not having to worry about things like security, cleaning and similar things is so good.

It’s also great to have the flexibility, especially in recent times, to scale up or down.

Any examples of real value we’ve created for you?

Being at Runway East has definitely given us credibility, which is key for hiring and new business. Having such a great space for introductions and interviews has been great for us.

The time saving of having a fully serviced space with all the perks – with no need to organise – has had such a positive effect on me and the business, and allowed us to concentrate on the things that matter.

Have we helped you through the pandemic?

Your attitude to us and other members was just the polar opposite to other providers and landlords we’ve worked with. You proactively reached out to us saying “we know COVID is a challenge to you so let’s see if we can support you better” and we came to an arrangement. We were over the moon with that. We really felt that community feeling. That proactiveness made us more loyal. Compared to other office providers and landlords, you were amazing.

How do you think we compare to other providers?

Location is massive. Runway East have chosen great places with the right transport links. The vibe is always huge as well. You know that if you feel welcomed into a warm community as a member, your clients who visit will feel the same. That’s a win. If we need more space, we won't be looking anywhere else.

Hybrid, all in or all remote?

We’re currently a combination of people in Cardiff, Bristol and further afield so we naturally have been fairly flexible to working combinations.

When we opened the Bristol office, we really struggled with engaging the Bristol and Cardiff teams together. We’d always been in one office together, but then had a satellite office and they didn’t feel part of the team. COVID actually helped solve that problem! It forced us to be better at being remote and distributed.

We recently surveyed the team and we know that they don’t want the commute, so I think full time office is just not an option for businesses like ours. I think where we are now – with a centralised HQ and having flexible workspace for satellite locations – is the way forward. If we hadn’t invested so much in our original HQ, we’d definitely consider a flexible provider like Runway East as our HQ as we love it.

One great thing about Runway East is the flexibility, so recently we’ve slightly downsized our desks on site but will almost certainly look to push these back up as we shift to more work being done in the office.

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