How agencies are keeping morale up

As WFH changes the way they work, CloudRaker, Jam3 and Sophomore have devised ideas to keep talent connected.

Jam3 Cribs 4

During a stressful and isolating time coping with the spread of COVID-19, creative agencies are looking to offer helpful tools and ideas to keep morale up during an extraordinary situation.

Klick Health has made its best practices to keep staff safe available on its website, as well as offering its digital health lab’s rapid prototyping capability to bring ideas for selected digital health solutions to life through free access to its data, behavioral science, engineering and design capabilities.

But now that most companies have instituted work from home policies, several agencies have also been developing ideas to address an issue that has arisen: keeping teams in a collaborative industry connected to one another and maintaining routines within a disruptive and tense environment. Take at look at some of the ones strategy has seen so far to see if they are right for your team (and if you have any other methods you’d like to share, get in touch).

Jam3

Toronto-based Jam3 launched the MTV-inspired “Jam3 Cribs!” so that agency staff can get to know each other “on a deeper level,” which is especially important “during these times when we must be physically apart.”

Every day, at 4 p.m., a Jam3 employee gives a 15-minute tour of their home/new office on video chat, while colleagues ask the individual showing their home a series of questions.

This has become a daily routine for the staff at Jam3 and provides a sense of connectivity and camaraderie, despite working in different locations.

CloudRaker

Digital agency CloudRaker has launched a website showing the detailed plan it is following to ensure employees have all the resources and capabilities they need to work from home. But as part of that, the agency also created a web-based app to monitor something else that could keep its staff safe and healthy: tracking how often people touch their face.

Using a computer camera, the app uses facial recognition to detect a user touches their face, resulting in bright red text flashing across the screen to reminds them to “Stop Touching Your Face.”

The most common way individuals can pick up COVID-19 is by touching contaminated surfaces, giving the virus a pathway inside the body once someone then touches their face or mouth.

The agency notes that, as someone sits in front of their computer, they’re often unaware of how many times they passively touch their face; a frequent reminder aims to make that more apparent to help them break the habit.

Sophomore

With COVID-19 forcing many agencies and production houses to suspend ad shoots and contracts, thousands of staff and crew members are currently out of work, according to Chelsey Burnside, co-founder and creative director at Toronto-based production studio Sophomore.

To help out the contractors, Sophomore has created a public database of cinematographers, photographers, editors, illustrators and more that are looking to take on “side hussles” and stop-gap work from home until regular production resumes. The spreadsheet – where the talent can list their skills, portfolio and contact info – has 25 entries as of this writing.