Wistia built a strong in-person office culture—but they're in the process of transitioning to a hybrid workplace.
They needed an efficient way for employees to book desks, as well as a modern visitor management system. And, they needed a solution that integrated seamlessly with their existing workflow.
Desk Booking, Visitor Management, COVID Team Safety
Before 2020, video marketing platform Wistia operated like most companies: Nearly everyone worked in the office every day.
“Pre-COVID, we had about 100 people or so, and we were mostly in-office,” says Shayla Belanger, Wistia’s Senior Workplace Experience Manager. “We had a very ‘in-person’ culture. Everyone sat together at lunch. We were all hanging out on couches. You were there pretty much every day.”
Shayla joined Wistia in 2019, and one of her first projects was helping Wistia open a new office. “When we were at our old office location, we didn't use any type of workplace management software,” says Shayla. “We didn't really need it. People were assigned desks on a PDF floor plan.”
However, the permanent changes to office culture as a result of the pandemic, along with the challenges of laying out a brand new office, presented difficulties.
“When we were thinking about the new office, we wanted to have a tool where there was an interactive floor plan, and we could add employee names,” says Shayla. “And then it developed from there because of COVID. We went from thinking we were going to assign individual desks for everyone, to creating a hotel desking system.”
“I was trying to figure out the best way to do seating. How can we make this easier on my team, and how can we avoid having to handwrite seating charts?”
In addition to needing an organized solution to manage seating and the new challenge of building a flexible hot desking process, Wistia also needed a way to manage office visitors, keep track of everyone coming and going from the office, and access data on office and desk usage.
As it became clear that the future of Wistia’s office culture was some version of a hybrid workplace, Shayla knew they needed, in her words, “a long-term solution.”
Shayla began by evaluating the tools available for desk booking and visitor management.
“We did endless amounts of research on different programs,” she says. “I have a lot of projects going on at all times, and with Eden, it was very easy to find information on what the program offered on the website. And then once we had a demo, I was sold—I felt that it was a ‘one-click’ user-friendly experience.”
“I think the tool really stood out for me because it felt like Eden was thinking of the next step, instead of just solving the problem that was there right then.”
The idea of managing multiple workplace challenges with a single software solution was another selling point.
“That was a huge thing for us,” says Shayla. “The fact that all of Eden’s tools live under one platform is so helpful for our team, because when people have to go to all different types of platforms to accomplish something, nothing ever gets solved and information gets lost.
“So having one space, that's very user friendly. It's almost as though you don't need to think when you're using Eden. It's just so easy to understand.”
Shayla also found it incredibly easy to introduce everyone at Wistia to Eden. “It's so easy to send them an email and set it up,” says Shayla. “No one's ever come to us and said, ‘I don't understand Eden. Can you help me?’”
“It's very easy to learn—it’s a quick and effective tool for all the problems we were trying to solve.”
Using Eden solved Wistia’s challenges around creating seating charts and tracking who is in the office, and eliminated all the administrative work associated with manually tracking desk usage and office attendance.
“It’s organized,” says Shayla. “It helps our team do our job and make things available when they should be, and unavailable when they're not.”
“It's saved us so much time. It's also saved us the headache of trying to do everything on paper.”
Wistia has also seen benefits beyond the practical reduction in admin work. Using Eden has given Wistia insight into how the office is being used, so they can make more informed decisions going forward as they continue to adjust to the hybrid workplace model.
“It’s really helped us to answer the question, ‘How are we utilizing the office? What do we want to change about the office? Who is coming into the office and what days and times? Do we need less desks or more collaborative areas?” says Shayla.
Wistia can also track who is using specific amenities, like additional monitors, and improve their office setup and available technology accordingly.
“The data that comes with Eden—including how many people are utilizing what features—has really helped. My team can understand how we can change the workplace now, with this new hybrid model.”
As Wistia begins to welcome back visitors, they’ve also taken advantage of Eden’s Visitor Management tool.
“We really love Visitor Management, and how we have it set up in our front office on iPads,” says Shayla. “When people check in, we get notified—that's a huge benefit to us considering someone isn’t always sitting at the front desk.”
Having an organized, digital way to keep track of who has been in the office helps Wistia keep accurate records without having to maintain a physical visitor log. “It's great that you don't have this handwritten piece of paper with check-in and check out,” says Shayla.
“And, you'll always have that data. We can go back in two months and say, ‘Oh, this person came into the office.’ Whereas when you're handwriting your check-in, those papers could get lost,” she says. “Not to mention, with COVID-19 cases, we were able to contact employees who were in the office at the same time almost immediately with the data reports Eden provides.”
Plus, having a streamlined, tech-forward way to welcome visitors to the office aligns with Wistia’s identity as an innovative, modern SaaS company.
“As a tech company, I think there's something nice about walking in and using a tool like this—and it's so easy.”
Finally, using Eden gives Wistia access to a full suite of workplace management tools under one roof, and has helped Shayla adapt to the changing landscape of the modern workplace.
“Eden was everything that we thought we needed to get through dealing with COVID in the workplace,” says Shayla. “And then every time we thought we had solved everything, Eden’s features provided something new and exciting for us to implement. For example, tracking vaccines and health surveys.”
Eden hasn’t just made Shayla’s workday easier—it’s also made coming back to the office convenient and more enjoyable for the entire Wistia team.
“It's very user friendly and easy to use,” says Shayla. “Sometimes things get lost in software. We use so many applications at work—with Eden, it's a one-click or two-click thing, and our employees have never been like, ‘Wow, this takes forever.’”
Wistia employees also love how easy Eden's Slack integration is to use. “Our team is on Slack all day long,” says Shayla. “People love the fact that the integration reminds us on Slack, and all you have to do is check in when you’re at the office. It's quick and effective and super helpful to our Workplace team.”
“People love that Eden integrates with Slack—Slack is our go-to for communication at Wistia. So it's been very easy to implement Eden on that platform.”
Using Eden has also made coming back into the office a more enjoyable, straightforward process for everyone.
“One of the biggest challenges we had before Eden was that no one knew who was in the office at what time,” says Shayla. “When you make reservations in Eden, everyone can see who is in on what day. Our employees want to be there when other employees are there, so if 15 to 20 people are going to be in the office today, they will want to go in.”
In order to make a hybrid model work for their team, it’s important that employees want to come into the office—and being able to clearly see when their teammates are working, and where they are sitting, helps Wistia accomplish this.
“Some of the feedback we've had in the past before we had Eden wasn’t good. People said, ‘I go in on a Friday and sometimes there's no one there—why am I even bothering to commute in?’” says Shayla.
“It's been great for people to be able to see, ‘Oh, 5-10 people on my team are going to be in on this day,’ or, ‘We're having an event and I want to see how many people on my team are going.’”
“It helps people decide when they’re coming in, and see the value of coming into the office.”