Futureheads

Rachel Murray
Director

Rachel Murray

Directors

Rachel is the team’s adrenaline junkie. Once to be found skydiving or kite-surfing on the South coast, Rachel now gets her kicks from running around after her young son Ben. She’s also a bit of a mum at work too – having trained as a counsellor, Rachel is always there to listen, wants to work out what makes people tick, and has everyone’s best interests at heart. Hiring the right people and ongoing staff development is very important to Rachel, and she leads Futureheads training and internal hiring with real care and unrivalled attention for detail.  Not afraid of some hard work and meticulous planning, she brings the same energy and passion to work every day.

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020 7776 9738

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Rachel's latest news and views

Digital Operations – tips to recession proofing your agency

Maintaining and building on the bottom line during a recession is tough! It was definitely hard to achieve growth for many businesses in 2012 and there was a lot of ‘digging deep’ across the industry. However a recession is a good time to really analyse your business and look at how to improve efficiency across it. This can include many aspects such as restructuring, streamlining processes, improving communication, hiring the right people; many aspects which in the short and long term make an impact on the bottom line. Futureheads collaborated with Roger Thelwell, Director of Operations,to get his thoughts on how to help businesses through a recession. Roger has consulted and led the operations for a number of agencies including Mook, Sapient Nitro and Start Creative amongst others with great results to boot. Check out our latest video to hear what he has to say.

RWD has the ‘Flow’ factor by Shakyra Campbell.

I am perplexed by the amount of brands that are yet to go digital or to embrace the ecommerce craze. I am even further ruffled by the idea that those who’ve embraced both of the above are doing it in a way that is not responding to their users’ needs. The user is the key part of the creation of a website and a successful design will incorporate the user journey but most importantly will understand the psychological personas of their users collectively.

The Hungarian Psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi has investigated the idea of "optimal experience," identifying the idea of what makes an experience enjoyable which he describes is a state of consciousness called ‘flow.’ Flow is when we’re psychologically in the zone or in a state of absorption. Csikszentmihalyi states that flow is an optimal state of “intrinsic motivation” where we immerse ourselves in our tasks or what we’re viewing.

So how can digital drive a user’s ‘flow’ on a digital platform you may wonder? The answer is Responsive Web Design, which in a nutshell is a web design that aims to craft an identical optimal viewing experience on a range of devices. This approach was embraced by Martin Ashplant from the Metro who is one of the few editors I can brand ‘digitally opportunistic’ meaning someone who can see a problem and identify the solution using digital. For example in 2012 it was reported that 51% of news was read via mobile. The Metro identified the ideal solution in keeping up with their users’ digital engagement, by creating one design that responds to all devices. So whether it is a tablet, mobile or desktop RWD will effectively respond to these devices and will stretch or shrink to the required scale of the device. RWD has enabled the Metro to push their content widely and effectively, allowing them to ‘flow’ through all social streams.

It is clear to me that RWD (a term coined by Ethan Marcotte) both for the user and the provider adds value. This is because it flows’ through all devices effortlessly and in essence is a great example of organizational ergonomics, allowing the user and the provider to be in a state of flow with each other. RWD enables us to view content in the same way identically if it be via mobile, tablet or desktop, creating an ‘optimal experience.’ Csikszentmihalyi outlines that when humans are at their happiest they’re in a state of flow and as we’re social beings it’s important that we view and receive content responsively which will effectively continue the flow of communication.