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How the Design Team at Tide Cleaners Radically Reduced Time-To-Market by Leveraging Loom

  • 90 days

    of resource put back into the business

  • 80%

    of in-person meetings eliminated

  • Use Case

    Product Design

  • Industry

    Dry cleaning and laundry

  • Company

    500+ employees

Overview

Laundry industry leader Tide Cleaners needed to remove friction from its design process. Its design team was scheduling in-person meetings at every step of a project’s progress. This was bringing an avalanche of unfocused feedback, slowing solution development, and delaying time-to-market. Then Tide Cleaners implemented Loom and started creating video presentations that contributors could feed back on in their own time, rather than being constantly sucked into meetings. Loom has enabled the business to eliminate 80% of in-person design meetings, get more focused feedback faster, and create forward momentum on every project. No surprise then that Tide recommends Loom to other time-pressed design leaders – 100%.

Being able to comment on a specific video timecode allows comments to be precise in direction. It is a game-changer for comments landing where they were intended to land. Loom has taught us that the majority of meetings can be cut down, and the majority of comments are not needed.

Mike TrozzoHead of Digital Product at Tide Cleaners

Challenges

  • Share design ideas and progress to people scattered across the country and in different timezones
  • Find an efficient way to collaborate that complemented in-person meetings
  • Avoid the headache of scheduling meetings and coordinating countless calendars
  • Accelerate time-to-market for new digital products and functions

Tide Cleaners’ design team needed to share ideas, invite collaboration, and get feedback throughout their design process. As a result, they were drowning in meetings and fighting for time to get their real work done.

Not only did Tide’s designers have to present work at each stage of the design process, they had to do it twice. First, to gather internal input from peers in the design team. And secondly, from stakeholders who had direct involvement in each project.

The team was scheduling in-person meetings for just about everything: from project kick-offs and ideation, through to design critiques at every step of the journey. And with team members and stakeholders scattered across the country, organizing meetings — let alone running them and following up with emails and other documentation — was a ‘nightmare’.

“We have colleagues and stakeholders in different states and timezones, and many are on different email systems or calendars,” says Associate director of Product Design Ryan Tauss. “I was wasting hours every week checking people’s calendars, finding gaps and then synching everyone up before I’d even prepared for the meeting itself!”

Alongside this black hole of wasted time, Ryan felt some in-person design meetings were inefficient. At times, they drew irrelevant or unfocused feedback that didn’t propel the design process forward.

“In-person meetings gave no time for pause and reflection,” says Ryan. “People would share whatever came to mind and the loudest people received disproportionate air-time. We were caught up in so much feedback that we were slower to build platforms, release work and realize business value.”

Ryan was eager to find a more flexible way to collaborate that didn’t require everyone to be in the same place at the same time. What he wanted was a channel that enabled him to clearly communicate the thinking behind his designs, and which encouraged thoughtful and focused feedback that drove higher quality work.

Solution

  • Create videos for every step of the design journey, instead of asking everyone to interrupt their days attending design meetings
  • Deliver presentations more efficiently and flexibly
  • Send a timeline for responses that ensures a tight feedback loop and maintains project momentum
  • Create one collective conversation that creates forward traction and speeds up sign-off

Ryan discovered Loom through a co-worker who’d already adopted the video messaging platform as a more efficient and expressive way to connect with his team. He quickly saw its potential to improve collaboration and workflow across his own design team.

“If I could record design presentations in video format and send them to collaborators to view at a convenient time in their workday, I’d reduce the need for scheduled meetings and give everyone more time back,” says Ryan.

From the first video Ryan recorded, he was impressed with how fast and intuitive the process was. He simply pulled up the relevant design files, hit record, and walked everyone through the designs. Because Ryan was the only person in the room, he could provide proper context, stay on track with his thoughts without interruption, and specifically state what he wanted collaborators to pay attention to.

Once a video was complete, Ryan sent contributors a link to open in whatever system they were working in – including Slack, Figma and Jira – without wasting time hopping in and out of systems. From designers requesting feedback, to the teams giving it, everyone at Tide Cleaners bought into the new way of working, because it was convenient, less onerous on their workday, and hugely more efficient.

“Loom is a more caring and considerate form of communication for everyone here,” says Ryan. “Engineers, designers and stakeholders can watch the content in their own time, rather than having to drop what they’re doing to hop on a scheduled meeting. Plus, I'm able to bring my personality into the experience in a very tangible, practical way, almost like I'm personally giving people a tour of a thought or solution.”

While in-person meetings are still important — particularly at the kick-off stage of every project — Ryan has now replaced 80% of the design meetings he used to schedule with Loom videos. “Creating a single video that everyone watches has allowed for more of a single collaboration and one collective conversation,” says Ryan.

“Because everything’s there in one place for everybody to see, everyone interacts in a more helpful and organic way. The comment-on-video function is a game-changer for notes landing where they were intended to land. The platform also encourages more breathing space and deeper reflection, which brings more considered feedback and motivates everyone to express their ideas.”

Thanks to the power and flexibility of Loom, Tide’s design process is smoother and faster than ever. “Because we can get feedback sooner and it’s laser-focused on the problems at hand, we can iterate faster, get approval faster, and complete projects sooner,” says Ryan. “We have so much more forward traction and drastically accelerate time-to-market.”

Results

  • 80% fewer in-person design meetings
  • 90 days saved that can be spent on other business priorities
  • Sign-off times and time-to-market reduced, so business benefits are realized sooner
  • Outstanding ROI for time-pressed design teams

Thanks to Loom, Ryan, his design team, and other stakeholders have reduced the time spent in synchronous meetings by a staggering 80%! To-date, Ryan has recorded 150 design presentations on Loom (of between 7 and 15 minutes). Previously, each one involved 30 minutes of scheduled meeting time for him and up to 10 colleagues.

That’s around 45,000 collective minutes saved – or more than 90 days of resource that’s gone back into the business.

“The real success for me personally is I have around six hours a week back in my diary to spend more time designing solutions and features that bring more business value,” enthuses Ryan. “We consistently get approvals without scheduling meetings and are able to move onto new projects after getting a thumbs-up via Loom.”

Ryan is blown away with Loom’s ROI and recommends the platform to any design leader looking to bring more clarity to their communication, tighten feedback loops, and get products launched faster.

“Loom brings more focus and efficiency to your workflow and communication,” says Ryan. “Why wouldn’t any business want a tool that provides empathy into your thinking, creates clarity around decision-making, and accelerates time-to-market for your digital products."