I read a post by Matthew Milan yesterday, entitled ‘It’s never been more important for design firms to think differently’. It’s a good read, and he raises some valid points. What he doesn’t raise is that the entire design studio/agency model is ripe for disruption (forgive the buzz word).
After more than 20 years in the industry, I’ve seen and worked in almost every form of studio setup – big, small, indy-agency, global agency, freelance, in-house – and for the most part, the model is the same. And the model isn’t exactly working, especially for SMEs.
I’ve long had in mind a model that is entirely collaborative and doesn’t rely on the same old setup that studios have long based themselves on. A model that is super-flexible, cost-effective and that can adapt according to the project or client requirements; rather than forcing the client or project to adapt to the model. This new model is entirely feasible.
Yes, it’s another buzz word, but it is exactly the right word to describe the model that I’m talking about. And I’ll openly admit that I’m far from the only one thinking about it and working to create it.
Instead of trying to bring everyone in-house and creating a studio that becomes bloated, we’re collaborating with developers, writers, producers, PR experts and more to achieve our clients’ goals.
The beauty of the technology and thinking that we have available in 2015 is that collaboration has never been easier. It also allows ‘small’ businesses to punch well above their weight, and often allows them to produce better work, faster, and at reasonable pricing (whilst still being profitable).
Agility is the answer to the broken model of the old-school design studio, and at Creo we’re working hard to bring the change.