How are we contributing to a better world? A mid-year reflection on the value of our work
Mid-year is always a reflection time for us. We analyse our financial performance and various statistics, and we think critically about how we’re delivering on our mission. This year, in the midst of troubling times nationally and globally, it feels more important now than ever to draw out the silver linings and acknowledge the achievements we’ve made despite the challenges thrown our way.
First up, thank you!
When we look at the work we’ve done so far in 2020 — most of which has been delivered during COVID-19 lockdown by a distributed team of about 20 people — we feel immensely proud. It is a testament to our clients’ commitment to putting better services and experiences out into the world that they have pushed on with this work; and that they have invested and trusted in us to partner with them.
So first up, THANK YOU to our clients and Meldsters for your resilience these past few months! Maintaining momentum and purpose during this time has played a huge role in our collective wellbeing.
So far in 2020 we have contributed to 25 initiatives with a direct focus on:
- Strategies to reduce and repair environmental damage
- Improving access to government services and support
- Improving access to health and wellbeing services
- Improving access to public transport
- Improving the usability of built environments
- Increasing diverse representation in our work
- New business models and brand positioning
- Open, collaborative ways of working.
We’ve listed out specific projects under each of these categories below. We’ve also included links to detailed case studies. If you’d like to know more about our approach and specific outcomes, connect via email@example.com.
The value we bring to all of this work
The common thread that epitomises the value we bring is evidence-based insights to inform decision-making.
During the last six months we have engaged with hundreds of internal and external stakeholders — all over Australia and all over the world to understand the need states, motivations, pain points, and barriers that all sorts of different people have with a particular policy, service or experience. We have conducted most of our engagement virtually, showing that distance can never be used as an excuse not to co-create.
We communicated insights in a meaningful way and worked together with our client teams to help them make responsible, inclusive decisions about how to proceed.
Strategies to reduce and repair environmental damage
- Helping a State Government agency to reduce soil pollution and contamination by designing and testing new messaging about asbestos.
- Helping a City Council to build a business case for new community recycling infrastructure and services.
- Helping the Port Authority of NSW to co-create a Sustainability Plan that people across the organisation are motivated to act on.
Improving access to government services and support
- Helping a Federal Government agency to rethink employment policy and services based on extensive research with people all over Australia, during COVID-19, as we face increasingly high numbers of unemployment.
- Helping a Not-For-Profit organisation to enhance a digital service it provides by surfacing financial services and support to people facing hardship due to COVID-19 and the summer bushfires.
- Helping a Federal Government agency to improve digital access to resources for school and teaching staff across Australia. As we know, this has become increasingly important for frontline education staff who have worked round-the-clock to continue providing learning opportunities for young people across the country.
Improving access to health and wellbeing services
- Helping a Federal Government organisation and a national health organisation work together to improve access to mental health services.
- Helping another national health organisation to co-design a tool that will help medical practitioners to better diagnose eating disorders.
Improving access to public transport
- Helping a State Government transport department to improve bus experiences, including all-door boarding and information displays, based on community and passenger needs.
- Helping another State Government transport department to improve metro and regional train services based on community and passenger needs.
Improving the usability of built environments
- Helping a university to consider human and environmental needs in the design of a new workplace.
- Helping a large property developer to understand and consider the experiences and expectations people have with their different types of residential and commercial developments.
- Helping a State Government property management organisation to create an architectural brief for upgrading a community events centre that is based on visitor and staff needs.
Increasing diverse representation in our work
Through our own company:
- We are making a concerted effort to increase the diversity of people involved in our work. We are exploring new lines of customer recruitment, and wherever possible we are recruiting from underrepresented groups as a first priority.
- We are using a co-design approach to formalise our own Sustainability Plan, which will include a Reconciliation Action Plan, principles to identify and eliminate anti-racist behaviour, and a carbon emission reduction strategy.
- We are advocating for Australian legislation change to enable collective ownership of and decision-making within our company, shifting from a shareholder model to becoming 100% employee-owned by trust (Employee Owned Trust).
New business models, customer journeys and positioning
- Designing and facilitating the engagement model with States, Territories and Industry in adopting Australia’s Nation Brand.
- Helping a global tech company to understand and reimagine their customer and partner commercial experience.
- Helping a national cultural institution to redefine is digital strategy off the back of a broader rebranding exercise.
Open, collaborative ways of working
- Helping a global tech company to design and pilot a customer feedback ecosystem, which introduces new processes, tools and ways of working.
- Helping several organisations to introduce human-centred design mindsets and approaches into their operating rhythm; including a national retailer, large bank, and a local council customer experience team.
Rounding back on our 2019 work
We’ve also spent the last few months analysing and reflecting on the impact of work we delivered in 2019 — as it can sometimes take months or years to see significant shifts and benefits unfold.
Here are three stand-out projects that have delivered tangible results for our clients, their people, partners, and communities. Click through to see detailed case studies.
- Delivering Great Policy: A model for great policy advice to create better outcomes for all Australians
- Creating ASIC’s Financial Wellbeing Network
- Building towards a more sustainable and energy-efficient future
As mentioned above, if you’d like to know more about our approach and specific outcomes, connect via firstname.lastname@example.org.