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How to continue operating effectively in times of transition?

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August 13, 2020 • News

Seven C3

"We left the office one day and never came back"

SevenC3 is a creative content and communications agency, part of the largest content marketing network in Europe. They are proud of their heritage in editorial content but with an increasing focus on digital and social media content and customer engagement.

Dennis Ziel, the Finance Director at SevenC3 has been a Paprika User at several agencies since 2007. We discussed with him the measures taken in the company to deal with the crisis, what has worked and what they will maintain in the future.

How did your agency manage the transition to remote working?

Before lockdown, a lot of our creative people were uploading to an onsite server in the office that was close to becoming obsolete. When lockdown began, we were able to transfer everything to the cloud to safeguard it and make it easier to access remotely. The good thing was that we already had infrastructure in place which we were familiar with so it made the transition that little bit easier. Even though we hadn’t planned to move it over to being cloud based it was simple to do and made the entire system visible to everyone when they moved to working from home.

How are you communicating activity & progress on all client projects?

We implemented Paprika in 2018 and have gradually introduced more functions ever since. We use the software for pretty much everything client related. It’s very reliable and provide all the functions that a business needs to run efficiently.

When lockdown began, finding the right workflow that worked for everyone remotely was a little bit difficult, but at least the software gave us options and allowed the team to access everything they needed immediately and share real time information, whether they were working together or separately.

We also organise regular video meetings. For example, we have weekly Client Services and Senior Leaderships team meetings and we’re using the software to track leads, clients, prospects and share this information on screen in Microsoft Teams.

For our clients, we can pull relevant information – such as timesheets and budgets – and share that with them too, so they can see in real time the details of their account.

How do you envisage the future working environment to look?

I think we’ve learnt that working remotely is possible and effective. It works!

Some people will want to work from home for longer and others will want to be back in the office. For the creative teams, interaction is very important and I think they will want to be back together maybe more than others.

What will returning ‘to normal’ look like for your agency?

The company isn’t going to put pressure on people to return until they feel comfortable. Nowadays you can do pretty much everything remotely and the fact that we have all the tools available to work at home means that we have options for making it work whatever we decide is the best way forward.

For example, Planit, a 16-strong company which is an associate of SevenC3, decided to implement an entirely new system after lockdown had been imposed. The implementation and training have been done remotely with the Paprika team – who are extremely helpful. To have successfully implemented a whole system from scratch in such a short time is impressive. It was easy to do and we had all the support we needed. It has been so successful that we are seriously considering just continuing with remote working for the whole company.

For those who decide to return to the office we are envisaging to work in shifts to make social distancing rules more effective.