One intuitive tool that brings it all together

How Cambridge’s Studio 24 use Runn to move at speed

Studio 24 is a digital agency based in Cambridge, UK, founded in 1999.

Studio 24 specializes in digital, using open source technology to deliver excellent work for their clients. They help clients make sense of their digital strategy, crafting human-centered websites and developing clever web apps. Studio 24 has a wide-ranging client base, including international charities such as CMB UK, and major projects including HS2, London Heathrow and Crossrail. Over the past 4 years, they’ve expanded into public sector work with clients including the Crown Commercial Service, the Department for Health and Social Care, and the UK Parliament.

These projects require high levels of expertise, often no-fail deadlines and occasionally short timelines. Three project managers steer delivery, working with a production team of 11.

A 20-year digital agency

Getting off the spreadsheets

Studio 24’s project managers were using a variety of different software tools and excel sheets to manage projects and the business. They wanted one intuitive tool that would free-up their day from data input and give them more time to focus on the rest of their job.

We needed a software tool to: 

  • plan project timelines
  • manage the studio schedule and highlight resource clashes
  • forecast studio capacity to surface information about when we can sell more work and when we need more people
  • tell us how profitable our projects are to-date and how profitable they are forecast to be.

Runn came along at exactly the right time and allows us to do all this - and more.

Julia Sang
Julia Sang
Senior Project Manager

Working with the Runn team

The previous software used by the PMs was well-established but unable to adapt to the needs of the studio. The Runn team were prompt and responsive to suggestions, and Runn quickly made a positive impact on Studio 24’s work.

We were keen to be involved with Runn because the software was at an early stage of development. The project managers were pleased to have an influential role in Runn’s development, including tailoring it to the needs of the studio. This is one of the benefits of being an early adopter.

Claire McDermott
Claire McDermott
Senior Project Manager

Big picture clarity

Being able to add projects that are not confirmed or have a flexible timeline has been a game-changer. With the overview of all potential commitments, planning is so much easier.

One of the best things about Runn, that we haven’t had with previous tools, is being able to add tentative projects. This gives us the bigger picture so we can be better prepared.

Francesco Fabbro
Francesco Fabbro
Project Manager

Confident scheduling

One aspect the PMs especially like about Runn is the capacity chart. Having a visual representation of how time in the studio is being used makes for an easy and accessible way to understand schedules.

Because of this, Runn saves the PMs considerable time. Changing schedules can be done in a couple of clicks. The studio also uses the API to take data from Runn and sync it to the Studio 24 intranet. This allows the team to see their weekly schedule at a glance and allows the management team to run detailed, tailored reports.

Drilling down into profitability

Timesheet integration and the project report has been another huge timesaver for PMs. It shows the time scheduled for each studio member working on the project against the project budget. Crucially, it surfaces profitability information by taking into account the difference between each persons' cost to the company and charge-out rate - and calculates the variance between time budgeted, actual hours used, and the forecast to complete. The PMs use this to keep a close eye on budgets so they can:

manage scope to stay within budgets
make decisions on which projects can afford to go over budget but still remain profitable
easily report back to clients on budget burn

PMs used to prepare this data manually. Now that the report is generated by Runn, not only does it save time, but also removes the risk of human error. Using real-time information means the management team can make informed decisions about project priorities during busy periods.

A better way to run a great agency

The Runn team has a clear understanding of project manager needs and agency realities, and this is reflected in the software. Using Runn, Studio 24 is confident they can provide accurate schedules for their clients and studio team, and deliver award-winning work on time and budget.

Design Agency
Studio 24
, founded
1999
19 staff, 3 project managers, 11 production team
Cambridge, UK
https://www.studio24.net/
Favourite Runn features
Cohesive timeline, schedule, and capacity management
Tentative project analysis
API access for timesheet integration
Automated real-time profitability information
Results
Confident, accurate schedules for clients and team
Deliver award-winning work on time and on budget
Run a more productive and profitable agency
Smart resource and capacity planning