As the inbound marketing agency’s business started to grow, they needed a platform to replace all their disparate systems and easily manage a retainer-based business model.
Chile-based growth agency IDS Agency specialized in inbound marketing and growth-driven design. As the agency began to scale, they started to feel the painful effects of growth. If they wanted to keep up with their rapid expansion, they had to get a clearer view of their operations to recover important data that was buried in multiple tools.
Five different tools were used for day-to-day business, including an email client, Basecamp for projects, Trello, HubSpot and a third-party time tracking tool. Co-Founder Ranya Barakat and her team were wasting several hours structuring recurring work for ongoing clients.
With so many separate systems, it was hard to manage the IDS Agency’s business. Data was incomplete and visibility was blocked. Ranya was unable to answer important business questions like:
- “Are we over-delivering or under-delivering?”
- “Is the staff working at full capacity?"
- "Are funds being properly utilized?”
She needed a platform that could give her the right data to answer these questions with confidence.
Ranya found success with Accelo's client work management platform, and was able to replace her disconnected tech stack with one smart platform that connected her team, clients and data. Accelo enabled the team to set up and manage workflows. From retainers to tickets to projects, everything came together in one place to support the company’s growth and enable them to scale with ease.
Because the agency only operated on retainers, having a platform that supported this was a monumental benefit. With built-in timers and retainer management, IDS acquired an accurate gauge on how many hours they spend doing client work.
"This has stopped us from over-delivering on projects where clients are given double of what they actually asked for, so we're no longer operating at a loss," Ranya says. Her frustration with tracking time while doing retainer work was completely eliminated because it was now handled with seamless automation.
The insights and visibility gained was huge as well. Ranya could see in real-time the status of any particular conversation or issue associated with a retainer through the activity stream — a feature that ensures no email or request ever goes unnoticed.
“I live on Accelo's Activity Stream,” she explains. "Prior to Accelo, we had absolutely no visibility into what we were delivering for clients and at what cost. Now, I see everything, including all emails, and can catch a problem before it actually happens.”
Ranya adds, “We also integrated Accelo with Slack, which is super helpful so that I get automatically notified on what’s being done, what clients are requesting and where my team is spending their time — or not spending it."
Without Accelo, there’s no way we would’ve made it through this year. That’s a fact.
Ranya Barakat, Co-Founder
While reducing busywork was a key performance indicator for IDS Agency, the time saved with Accelo and the client portal was what had the team most impressed.
"We're hoping to save 20–30% of our team's time because they won't need to move links, content or questions from Accelo onto Trello, which they have to do now,” says Ranya.
Accelo enabled the team to know ahead of time how many blogs, ebooks, campaigns and other projects they had each month through automations that created and assigned tasks for them, saving a full day of work!
“We started to realize that the clients who we thought would be the most time-consuming or have the most activities are actually not as demanding as some of the other ones. This data has made us really aware of the operations of the agency.”
IDS Agency now operates as CRMToolbox.
Looking to improve efficiency and client work delivery like Ranya's team? See how Accelo can be customized for agencies.