How MetaLab Saves a Day Each Week Using Loom — and Builds Better Products for Clients

20%jump in design team’s productivity

$1000sof additional value delivered on every design sprint

MetaLab

Use Case
Product Design
Industry
Product Agency
Company
200 employees distributed across 12 countries

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Overview

As an agency that ships digital products, MetaLab has used Loom to reduce meetings and increase the Design team’s productivity by 20%. Loom has also helped the team with client communication, leading to more relevant client feedback, improved decision-making, and ultimately, designing better products. By improving communication efficiency with Loom, MetaLab now delivers thousands of dollars of additional value to their clients.

Metalab Design Lead Andrew Reynolds gives design feedback via Loom.


Andrew Reynolds
Loom enables us to maximize our impact as a distributed company by helping us collaborate and share ideas more easily.

Andrew Reynolds

Design Lead, MetaLab

Challenges

  • Valuable creative time was wasted in unproductive meetings

  • Needed to communicate more efficiently with remote-based teams

  • Handoffs were misinterpreted through written communication, and designers struggled to share the full context and story behind design work

  • Wished to be more efficient internally and provide more value to their clients

MetaLab’s globally distributed Design team used diverse digital tools to maintain communication and collaboration throughout the design process. However, certain aspects of communication were slowing them down. A common frustration was a seemingly endless flow of synchronous meetings, which would interrupt the momentum of project work, leaving the team time-starved and frustrated.

The team’s productivity and efficiency were being further impacted by long and often complex emails. “If a designer in one time zone was wrapping up their day, they’d hand off to me by email,” says Andrew. “The emails were always well-considered and thoughtful, but there was a risk you’d misinterpret a point, take the wrong direction, or just be left with more questions to ask — which could leave you behind by a day.”

MetaLab faced similar frustrations whenever they carried out design reviews and collaboration with their clients. Because design work is so specific and contextual, it was easy for clients to miss things when shared by email. They would give feedback without the right context, which delayed the design process.

Andrew and his Design team were eager to find new ways to become more efficient by reducing unnecessary meetings, reducing emails between distributed teams, and speeding up the design process.

Inevitably, our meetings took longer than planned. When they didn’t accomplish everything, we still had to augment them with other channels, like posting work in Slack or sending links and emails, which ate up everyone’s time.

Solution

  • Replaced meetings and project updates with personalized videos

  • Improved collaboration at the vital ideation stage of design projects

  • Enriched context when requesting and giving feedback on designs

  • Streamlined the client review process and smoothed out project handoffs with crystal-clear instructions

Eager to take back more of their valuable time, Andrew and his team turned to video messaging platform Loom. Unlike other tools that take days of training, Loom’s learning curve was virtually instantaneous.

“The time between asking my team to experiment and then seeing them adopt Loom was a matter of days,” says Andrew. “They quickly saw that making a video was as simple as hitting record, adding their screen, talking, and sharing the content.”

The team found immediate value using Loom to collaborate at the blue-sky ideation stage of projects. “For example, doing UX design early on in the project is about coming up with as many solutions as possible for a specific problem,” says Andrew. “The Loom videos allow every designer to share and collaborate on ideas. By the end of a phase of work, you can see how much more refined and improved our ideas are.”

Once a design sprint is underway, Loom keeps collaboration flowing. Where meetings were previously the norm, Loom videos have replaced them at almost every step of the design process, including:

  • Requesting and giving feedback on designs — Loom allows designers to show their visuals on screen and walk the team through all the background story and context while other designers leave reactions and feedback in real time.

  • Providing project handoffs — Team members now use Loom to share the exact project status and what’s required of the next designer. They can convey all the detail and nuance that’s nearly impossible to achieve with text alone.

  • Delivering project updates — Instead of breaking everyone’s creative flow and coordinating schedules to find time for a synchronous meeting, team managers now record and share project updates for their teams with Loom.

The task of communicating their designs with clients has also transformed with Loom. MetaLab shares two Loom videos a week with clients, which not only keeps them in the communication loop, but ensures they understand the rationale behind the team’s work.

Loom is a lifesaver when we present work to clients,” explains Andrew. “Loom allows the designers to control the narrative without interruption, weave that story, and then share it out with a client, so that when they're ready, they can digest the video, give us their input, and help us make really critical decisions.

From the earliest seed of a product idea through to full fruition, Loom has improved MetaLab’s productivity and enabled the team to be more collaborative, innovative, and inspired, truly changing the way they work.

“Having a video messaging tool that makes it so simple to share what we’re working on has created flexibility for our team, tightened feedback loops, and made working with a global team even more accessible,” says Andrew.

Designer Laura Turner recorded this asynchronous response to Andrew's feedback.

Results

  • Eight hours a week saved by reducing meetings

  • 20% increase in productivity

  • Thousands of dollars of additional value delivered to clients on every design sprint

Andrew’s Design team has quickly become heavy power users of Loom and their productivity has skyrocketed.

He estimates that swapping out meetings for looms saves the team a full day on every design sprint, and that’s a big deal. With average sprints lasting five days, the team is now 20% more productive, giving designers valuable time back to focus on refining creative ideas and getting products to market faster.

This surge in productivity equates to significant value added to projects. With senior design time typically billed at around $2,000 a day, clients’ dollars go a lot further. Design reviews are more effective, there’s no duplication of work, and the sprints run efficiently. As a result, the products MetaLab designs are more beautiful and easier to use than ever before.

Andrew says MetaLab is a better product agency thanks to Loom: “Loom enables us to maximize our impact as a distributed company by helping us collaborate and share ideas more easily,” he says. “It has helped us create a more open, collaborative environment where it’s efficient and fast to communicate, whether the recipient is in the next city or many continents away.”

Communicate more effectively at critical moments, reduce meetings, and increase productivity.