In our last updates, we introduced our teams:
- CNC: Rising to the Ventilator Challenge
- Sales: Supporting the Ventilator Challenge by sourcing essential materials
- Rapid Prototyping Unit 1: COVID-19 testing equipment
- Rapid Prototyping Unit 2: Overcoming the challenges of working in self-isolation
Embracing new ways of working for the future
In this final team-focused article, we look at how Justin and Vikki Pringle have embraced a longer-term way of working.
Home is where… everyone is
For a few years, long before COVID-19 entered our consciousness, both Justin and Vikki have worked from home a day or so a week. Since lockdown, home has continued to be an office, as well as a school for their 13-year-old daughter, a place of creativity for their 15-year-old son and a bustling playground for Barney the dog.
As many of you who have been working from home with a full household will know, it’s not always easy and is an adjustment for everyone.
Vikki claimed her workspace from the outset and is set up in the home office which she has always used to process invoices, run the payroll and manage the business’s accounting and banking needs.
Unlike Vikki, in the seven weeks since lockdown began, Justin has hot-desked around their home finding. He has worked in the kitchen but was kicked out as his frequent phone calls and Zoom calls were disrupting school-life. He’s worked in the larder surrounded by an array of cocktail beverages, but space was limited. And he’s worked in the spare room. The latter has become a permanent space for Justin, although the larder did have its advantages!
From his new office, Justin has maintained regular contact with the rest of the team, via email, phone and video conferencing. He says:
“It’s working brilliantly. I get the things I need to get done, done. My team has proved that I don’t need to be in the bureau for the business to continue being a success. And I have the mental space to focus on the company in terms of our staff (especially their health & safety right now) and the general direction of the business post-COVID-19.”
When talking about other benefits, Justin says:
“Technology has bridged a gap in a way it couldn’t ten years ago. Both Vikki and I are fully connected to the team and so can maintain valuable communication with everyone. We’re both also mindful of how much working from home reduces our personal (and therefore, our business’s) carbon footprint. This is important as we now look to the future.”
There’s so much we could say about the impact of COVID-19 on businesses, not to mention the devastating cost to human lives, but the long-term economic impact is likely to be bleak.
That said, we have survived recessions before. We’re not naïve; we know the current global economic crisis is beyond what we’ve seen before, but our aims are to:
- continue providing high-quality prototype parts using the latest technology. Right now, we are looking at adding a post-processing solution to our SLS offering which smooths the part surface to a finish matching injection moulding.
- provide easy ways for our customers to access our services; the launch of My 3D AM, our online portal for SLS and SLA parts, is just one example
- be flexible in our approach to business; working from home is a workable solution, there are other working solutions
- adapt our business to reflect the needs of our customers as and when the time comes
- continue launching new services. For example, we will soon be launching our new CNC Express service so customers can benefit from 3-5 day dispatch times. This new service level was due to launch in March but we have postponed it due to the current situation, however, we are actively recruiting to the CNC team.
Ready to start your next prototype project?
Prototype Projects is a UK-based prototyping bureau delivering high-quality prototype parts in fast turnaround times.
We offer a 3D printing service for SLA, SLS, FDM and Figure 4 parts. Use our My 3D AM service for online SLS and SLA 3D printing instant quoting and ordering for additive manufacturing. We also offer CNC machining and milling and laser cutting services.
Contact us on 01763 249760 to discuss your next prototype project.