“It's not magic. What's magic is the amazing experience when you put all these people together.”
Keith Ballagh of Marshall Day Acoustics.
Keith Ballagh wants Marshall Day Acoustics to be the smartest firm in its market. MDA's seventy acoustic engineers are spread around twelve locations. They are close to their customers, but a long way from each other. Keith noticed that when an engineer emails a question around, it creates a mess of email. They need an easy way to run technical questions past each other.
“I have used the forums as a marketing tool. I want them to think of our local office as small and nimble to respond to them, but I also want them to know I have seventy colleagues I can call on.”
Marshall Day has online groups for nine specialist areas of acoustic engineering. When a Marshall Day engineer needs help on a technical problem, they post a question to the applicable group. Specialists from all parts of the firm quickly respond.
“If you take on Marshall Day, it's like a brain of seventy people, because if there's something you don't know, you type it in and within minutes you've got access to the collective wisdom of seventy people.”
Engineers at Marshall Day find it easy to use the online groups because they can simply use email.
“It is so heavily used because it is such a simple but effective tool.” ... “The threshold for starting a discussion is low and the payback is high.”
Most staff follow the conversations as they occur. This provides insight into new topics and the expertise of other staff members.
“It's really good listening to people's discussions. That's the most value, the continual education.” ... “I specialise in environmental but I follow building acoustics as I want to expand my skillset.”Start a free trial