Cre8 Exhibits are an events design agency founded by Baeu Medina in 2009. They create bespoke designs that fit into any kind of space, including tradeshows, KPop events, festivals, interior design and showrooms. They produce innovative design solutions that both communicate brand message and create brand loyalty.
In 2020 Cre8 Exhibits were in an exciting growth phase, with 5 staff on the books and looking at expanding the team to keep up with all the work that was rolling in.
Then after 11 years in business, COVID hit, and all the Cre8 jobs were wiped out in the space of a week. Exhibitions were cancelled until further notice, lockdowns were coming. The director, Baeu had to look at letting staff go and also close down the hub of her business - the office. As she thought back to that time she said “I shut the office down. I fought and fought and fought to try and keep the office” she feels like there was an emotional attachment to the office, that made it hard to let go.
Baeu had to put a plan in place to completely rebuild her business “it just took us back. Like, right back to the beginning.” But, not right back to the beginning. They still had their existing customers. So, Baeu went and got a contract job to pay the bills and made the decision to keep her employees, but now on a contract basis, and she’s so grateful that her team stuck with her for the long haul.
Everyone was working remotely, the office was gone, her senior Project Manager had moved out to the country and they didn’t have a base to work out of anymore.
When they worked in the office, the team had a huge whiteboard that they called the Job Board – this had all of the upcoming and current jobs, information and contact details spelled out for the whole team to see. They also operated with physical files for each job, that they carried around the tradeshows to ensure everything was ticked off.
The challenge with the whole team now working remotely, they had lost access to both the Job Board and the physical files couldn’t be grabbed from the cabinet as needed.
Once Baeu had signed her proposal she was put in touch with Kick Project Manager, Michal, and they hit it off straight away “she was amazing. She was on top of us all the time getting back to us and following us up if she hadn’t heard back” so the project could stay on track.
Before they kicked off the project, Baeu sat down with her senior Project Manager and mapped out exactly what they wanted the solution to look like, and how it needed to function in the business. She provided this to Michal to include in the brief to the Implementation Manager and it definitely helped get the project moving in the right direction quickly.
The brief included a CRM and Project Management solution – which would replicate the physical job board that was the hub of the business in the Cre8 office. With fortnightly meetings and constant revision, they worked together to build and test the solution until the Cre8 team had their Job Board and CRM that integrated into their business seamlessly.
Implementing monday.com into Cre8 Exhibits
Beau said that moving to monday.com for her project and client management took some time to get use to “when we were first moving over, one of the things that I was really concerned about was the job board, because we had a physical job board - and it was great” and she was so nervous about moving from her trusty job board of 10 years that held pride of place in their old office that she considered going out and buying a mini whiteboard for herself.
In saying that, she said that implementing the monday.com solution into the business was easy “rolling it out was super easy. Everyone got on board. It's user friendly.” Baeu mentioned that, perhaps it took her a little bit to get use to “I am not a person that enjoys learning new programmes- but if I have if I have to, I will.”
But she chose monday.com because, when reconfiguring her business she wanted stuff that is “super quick and easy to use”
For example, it took a few weeks to get out of the mindset of sending an email and starting to tag their team in monday.com – but when they started doing it consistently the consensus was that it is so much easier than sending emails all day.
Being a social butterfly, Baeu was worried that having a fully remote team and monday.com managing the bulk of their communication, they might loose the more personal interactions that you get from office life, but she is finding that, as well as utilising monday.com to communicate, the team still pick up the phone to chat and build the personal connections that are important to the Cre8 business values.
There were many wins for the Cre8 Exhibits business after making the move to monday.com, including financial, efficiency, collaboration and the value of a CRM.
When Baeu talks about the financial savings to her business she was proud to note that thanks to monday.com she doesn’t have to lease an office “I don't have to get another office anymore. Because the way that we've set it up now, everyone can see everything that everyone's doing.”
Cre8 were paying well over $1000 a week in rent. They have now invested in their initial Kick consulting fee which is followed by their monthly monday.com subscription. All in all, Cre8 Exhibits will save approximately $60,000 a year by implementing monday.com into the business. By having their team work remotely, monday.com has removed the need for leasing a physical building.
Regarding efficiency in the business, she has found that monday.com has “really taught me the value of having a CRM system” whilst giving visibility of the projects and team’s work without having to micromanage the staff “I don't have to sit around micromanaging anyone and having to call them up and say, ‘Hey, where's that ad?’”
They have now also brought all their documents into monday.com. Before they would carry around physical files and tick things off. Now the documents are all in monday.com and instead of carrying a bulky file around a conference or expo, they open the monday.com app on their phone to find the information that they need.
They also found that year-on-year they would be replicating exhibits for their clients, but previously didn’t have a repository to pull from and would start from scratch each year. Now housing all documents and project information in their Job Board in monday.com Baeu said they “can grab an old schedule, change the day, make other necessary changes for the new job – and it gives us a template that we would not have had to initially start.”
In conclusion, the adoption of monday.com has brought about a multitude of significant benefits for Cre8 Exhibits. The impact can be seen across various aspects of the business, including financial savings, enhanced efficiency, improved collaboration, and the added value of a robust CRM system.
Financially, the move to monday.com has proven to be a game-changer. By eliminating the need for a physical office space, the company has saved a substantial amount of money previously spent on rent. This shift has not only allowed for significant cost reductions but also redirected these resources towards the initial Kick consulting fee and the monthly monday.com subscription. In total, Cre8 Exhibits is set to save approximately $60,000 annually, making it a financially prudent decision.
Efficiency within the business has also seen remarkable improvements. The platform has highlighted the importance of having a CRM system, enabling better project visibility and reducing the need for micromanagement. Team members can access project details and updates seamlessly, eliminating the necessity for constant oversight. The consolidation of documents within monday.com has further streamlined operations, replacing the need for physical files with a digital repository accessible from anywhere. This has expedited the process of creating new exhibits by providing easy access to previous project information, effectively transforming it into a valuable template resource.
In summary, the integration of monday.com into Cre8 Exhibits has not only yielded substantial financial savings but has also revolutionized the way the company operates. It has ushered in an era of increased efficiency, reduced the burden of micromanagement, and provided a centralized platform for document management and project replication. Overall, these results underscore the immense benefits that monday.com has brought to Cre8 Exhibits, positioning the company for continued success and growth in the future.