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Change in direction as Code Computerlove founder says client agency model is broken


Code Computerlove has, this morning, announced a change in direction, as it moves into customer experience.

One of Manchester’s most established digital agencies, it has made the decision because it feels the industry is moving away from brand communications to instead focus on customer experience. In fact it argues it’s no longer a “digital agency”, instead preferring “digital studio.”

“I believe the client / agency model is broken; we need new ways of working together that not only recognise the difference between comms and experience but also the evolution in client capability and breakdown of traditional silos such as marketing, customer experience and IT within our clients businesses,” explained founder and CEO, Tony Foggett.

“So we’ve thrown out the rule book and created a new operating model for how we work.  Based on the understanding that ‘experience’ is less reliant on the ‘big bang’ campaign and more about continual iteration, testing and feedback loops.

code_office“We focus on creating a different level of collaboration and alignment in decision making and co creation with our clients than the traditional way of doing things has afforded. Using lean delivery methodologies underpinned by a different commercial model we are able to form a much more flexible and aligned partnership around our clients objectives.

“We believe it’s time for the industry to think differently about the client / agency relationship.”

Foggett set up the agency 17 years ago and this change in direction is being reflected through a new brand identity. The company’s 80-strong staff have also moved into a new 13,000sq ft space, designed in conjunction with Spacemen Creative and Form.

“We’ve created a space that fosters a culture of empowerment and improvement. And this doesn’t stop at our employees. We help our customers to embed the technologies, capability and culture they need to evolve and stay ahead. We form a partnership around a shared ambition to Make Better Together. Our working environment engenders these new types of relationships and approach,” continued Foggett.

The studio features team spaces, an event area for learning, UX testing labs and a “maker’s space” for “fun and innovation.”

“As an agency we’ve never stood still and always led the field – from the early days when we were the forerunners in digital producing multi-media CD-ROMs as well as building the first ever websites for clients such as Dr Martens, HMV and Huggies,” added managing director, Louis Georgiou.

“But the digital world isn’t just about ‘build’ anymore, it demands a new way of working and, taking a lead from some of the huge dot com retailers who are already adopting lean principles, we’re leading the field in the agency world.”

Georgiou also said that the studio had won 3 new contracts since the start of the year, adding “around £1m” of new business.

“While recruitment continues to be a challenge, especially when it comes to software engineers, we’ve added a number of new senior members to the team who are already well versed in lean principles and evolution through real insight which is helping us fast track the change within the studio.  It’s set to be an exceptional year for Code,” he concluded.

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