With remote and flexible work patterns becoming a more common part of our lives, businesses are demanding something different from traditional office rental. Five very different case studies from Sussex Innovation’s community show how the business incubator is adapting to demand
ISMS.online provides cloud-based software for managing information security, privacy and compliance. With significant recent investment, and increasing demand from businesses responding to their newly distributed workforces, the team has almost tripled in size over the past 18 months.
This growth presented two problems: how to increase the company’s office space without paying for more than was needed, and how to onboard new employees without distracting the existing staff from their work?
As tenants at the Sussex Innovation Centre, ISMS.online were able to access overflow office space as and when required, and occupied the Centre’s boardroom as their dedicated training hub for over a month while integrating new team members into the business.
“We’ve gone from two or three people working from this office, to 15 at the beginning of lockdown, to over 40 now as we come back from Covid. The Innovation Centre has allowed us to grow and flex with their office space, the technology, the support they’ve offered.”
Sam Peters, CPO, ISMS.online
Showcasing Technology Portal Devices
Portal Devices delivers immersive audio-visual installations for the themed entertainment industry; an extremely specialised service that often requires practical demonstration to impress and win new clients.
Their tenancy at Sussex Innovation enabled the business to install ‘XR Space’, an immersive lab in the Centre’s technology demonstration room that showcases virtual tour content through a wraparound projection display.
“We and our partners are using the space to move forward critical sales discussions, which are happening almost daily now and attracting key clients to work with us.”
Matt Roberts, founder, Portal Devices
Content Creation Watch This Sp_ce
Watch This Sp_ce is an inclusion consultancy that helps organisations recruit, train and retain a diverse workforce. As a small core team with flexible working patterns, they make use of Sussex Innovation’s Sussex Stars scheme to come in and use a hotdesk or meeting room, as and when needed. The arrangement proved particularly valuable when Watch This Sp_ce needed a base of operations for the day so that the team could shoot video content together as part of an upcoming campaign.
“The Sussex Stars membership is perfect for us as a new and growing business. It gives us flexibility for when we need to work together.
And we have used the space a few times for recording our video content for training courses. The team are helpful, friendly and so supportive of our business.”
Mo Kanjilal, co-creator, Watch This Sp_ce
Timeshare Office InterAnalysis
InterAnalysis is a trade analysis platform that provides an affordable way for governments and third parties to model the impact of proposed trade agreements. With many of the team planning to work from home for the duration of the pandemic, the company decided that they no longer needed a full-time office throughout the week, but still wanted a physical
space for face-to-face meetings and collaborative work.
Sussex Innovation brokered an arrangement with fellow tenants Prophecy Marketing, enabling InterAnalysis to keep their office space on a timeshare basis, reducing operational costs without losing the valuable ‘real-life’ connection between the team.
“Sussex Innovation has shown itself to be highly adaptable in a time of uncertainty and rapid change. We can’t thank the team enough for all they have done in response to the pandemic - while remote working has allowed us to continue operating throughout, it cannot replace the type of collaboration and mindset that in-person working delivers so well.”
Michael Laffey, Business Support Manager, InterAnalysis
Coming Back Together Claimer
Claimer is a cloud software platform for startups that removes the hassle and cost associated with claiming R&D tax credits. With several new team members having never met their colleagues face-to-face due to lockdown, the company’s founders decided that a day needed to be set aside for the whole team to come back together, socialise and build cohesion and trust.
Sussex Innovation hosted a Covid-secure team-building day in their collaborative open plan space in Croydon, which had a noticeable impact on mood, motivation and engagement across the whole company.
“Given some of our team members live hundreds of miles away from London, it was the first time many of us met in person, and it was brilliant! We had a staff photoshoot in the breakout area of Sussex Innovation Croydon, where we have a permanent office. We then spent the rest of the afternoon in and around the space doing a meet and greet so we could get to know each other better. It was really powerful to be able to have everyone together, especially given the convenience of the space being located right next to East Croydon station.” Adam McCann, founder and CEO, Claimer
If you’re planning a more flexible return to the workplace for you and your team, get in touch with Sussex Innovation about the range of options available for office-based, remote and hybrid working using their facilities, visit www.sinc.co.uk/office-space