Ballou PR: A Siasto Champion!

Niccolo Pantucci · · Comment

'Ello Gov'nor!

We recently caught up with the talented Rachel Phythian and our friends at British PR firm Ballou PR, who told us about how they've used Siasto for collaboration while expanding to three offices in London, Paris, and Berlin.

Here's a picture of a few members of the team:

From left: Rachel Phythian, Robert Bownes, Katie Simpson, Meera Trivedi

Tell us a little about who you are and what you do.

My name is Rachel Phythian and I'm an Account Manager at Ballou PR. We provide communications services to growth-stage companies like Basho, Gogobot, HotelTonight, SendGrid and Zendesk, as well as to a number of investors and advisory groups within the technology sector.

At the moment, Ballou PR is a small-to-medium-sized consultancy but we're growing quickly. I'm based in London but we also have offices in Paris and Berlin. In total, we have a team of about 20 people across three countries, including founder Colette Ballou.

Before coming to Siasto, what did you use for collaboration, task, and project management?

Before Siasto, we typically used email action lists, overseen by managers, and each person was responsible for his or her own task list. It was relatively easy to keep track of what was going on in this way because we were a small team.

However, as we started to grow in numbers and to work with more clients, the team structure and complexity of tasks began to differ from account to account. On some accounts, we'd have two to three people, while on others we'd need five.

As a manager, I found I had to hold meetings and email people constantly to get visibility over each of my accounts, which was frustrating and inefficient. It also became more difficult to manage the team's workload and allocate tasks fairly; since individuals worked across teams, I didn't always know what they had on their to-do lists.

How did Siasto help you solve these problems?

We were conscious that we didn't want to turn task management into something that needed managing itself. Whatever solution we chose needed to be easy and quick to use. I tested out Asana and found it too developer-focused for the sort of work that we do.

In contrast, when I tried Siasto, I thought the interface was much more intuitive for people in my sector. I also found the team really receptive to questions / suggestions. We therefore carried out a trial, designating each account as a 'Project' and giving access to each project to the appropriate team members. Everyone found it simple and efficient to use, so we signed up three months ago and haven't looked back.

Why is Siasto important for your workplace?

Siasto allows each team member to see / manage his or her to-do list according to client / deadlines, which is really useful for prioritising tasks.

From a manager's perspective, it enables me to see how much work team members have on, meaning I can allocate tasks efficiently. Siasto also gives me a complete overview of what is being done and needs to be done for each client in one place.

Can you tell us about one situation where Siasto helped you and your team collaborate better on a project or set of tasks?

Siasto helps us systemically so it's hard to single out any one situation! It's changed how we work together as a team on a daily basis and its effect has therefore been fundamental.

Thanks a lot Rachel and team! We hope Europe isn't too cold for you at the end of the year!

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Do you have an interesting story about how your company uses Siasto, and how you've benefited from it? Let us know! Just leave a comment below, or send us an email. Cheers!

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