Studio Science Matures Operations and Aligns Teams Around Better Forecasting

Headquarters: Indianapolis, IN
Company type: Design & innovation agency
Company size: 40 employees

Key Integrations

The gist

Studio Science, a design and innovation agency with ambitious growth goals, implemented Parallax to more quickly and accurately understand resource capacity, proactively plan for projects coming down the pipeline, and optimize utilization.

The challenge

Studio Science relied on spreadsheets for years to allocate resources, track project progress, and calculate utilization. But the spreadsheet process was manual and clunky, requiring the agency’s operations leaders to track down data across multiple tools to make sense of what was happening across the business.

Plus, sales and delivery ran on parallel, disconnected paths. Delivery leaders didn’t have visibility into what was coming down the pipeline, and sales leaders couldn’t see what the delivery team was working on. This lack of visibility led to overpromises with clients, mad scrambles to find available resources, and tension between the two teams. 

“We have huge growth goals over the next few years, and we knew we wouldn’t reach them with a spreadsheet. We wanted to implement a product that could help us scale and grow,” said Alexandra Allinson, Director of Creative Operations at Studio Science.

The solution

Studio Science implemented Parallax to connect sales to delivery and get an accurate, real-time view of resource capacity, utilization, and margin. Parallax helps Studio Science bring more predictability to their operations with a sense of what’s coming and what it’ll take to execute successfully. 

The agency was glad to find a professional services automation (PSA) solution that integrated with its CRM (Salesforce) and time tracking tool (Harvest). These seamless integrations meant implementing Parallax caused minimal disruption to the team’s workflow, and they helped Studio Science get even more value from the tools it already used.

Studio Science now uses Parallax as its PSA to:

  • Confidently scope work using data from similar projects to estimate hours, timelines, and costs
  • Understand resource capacity by combining sold work and forecasted work from the pipeline, knowing well in advance when the agency needs to hire or tap contractors for support
  • Proactively adjust resource and project plans to ensure resources are billing at an optimal level
  • Facilitate a weekly pipeline review meeting between sales and delivery to encourage better visibility and collaboration between teams
  • Guide the weekly review of key organizational metrics, including project variance, margin, and utilization

“Parallax is pulled up 24/7. It’s my constant source of truth for figuring out how to navigate any new deal or determining how to allocate resources to ensure optimal utilization. For example, if I notice a resource’s planned utilization is low, I can collaborate with sales to determine what we could try to get signed sooner.”

Alexandra Allinson
Director of Creative Operations, Studio Science

What’s next for Studio Science?

Studio Science also selected Parallax to help mature operations and to support its ongoing growth. The company has increased bookings and revenue by 25% year-over-year for the past four years and aims to continue on that trajectory. With Parallax, there’s tighter alignment between sales and delivery teams, and a better sense of forecasted demand and performance. Plus, with Parallax creating a shared perspective on the supply and demand of Studio Science’s team, its leaders can spend time being more strategic and aren’t bogged down chasing data from disparate tools and platforms. Allinson is confident in the data, reporting, and insights Parallax delivers and leverages the solution to align with leadership and keep her teams on track. 

“At one point, there probably needed to be three of me to do my job,” added Allinson. “Now because Parallax takes care of so much of it, I can simply share the data instead of spending so much time figuring out what it all means.”