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How Brex Unblocks Costly Bottlenecks and Spends More Time Designing with Loom

  • 1273

    meetings replaced by using Loom within 90 days

  • 1844

    videos rewatched in Loom knowledge base within 90 days

  • Use Case

    Design

  • Industry

    Financial Services and Technology

  • Company

    600+ employees

Overview

The design team at Brex needs to share and garner feedback on design iterations, but it is impossible to get every critical stakeholder on the same video call at the same time. This has created bottlenecks and delayed time to market.

Then Brex implemented Loom, which enables designers to produce and post review videos, request timely input from all key partners, and massively tighten the feedback loop.

Replacing in-person meetings with Loom reviews saves huge chunks of time for designers, engineers, and project managers—and frees up more hours for design, rather than drowning in meetings and feedback.

Thanks to Loom, our designers can spend less time wrangling feedback and more time designing. Loom has tightened our feedback loops and made working as a remote team so much more accessible.

Taylor JodyDesign Program Manager at Brex

Challenges

  • Adjust to new and disruptive remote working reality
  • Struggle to coordinate synchronous meetings with critical stakeholders and gather timely design feedback
  • Find a solution to eliminate friction and efficiencies in the feedback process

In just three years, Brex had rapidly transitioned from an ambitious start-up to become a big name in Fintech.

Their innovative digital products were rapidly disrupting the marketplace, and a collaborative team culture ensured they provided a seamless customer experience across their financial platform...then COVID struck.

“With zero warning, a remote working culture was forced on Brex,” explains Design Program Manager Taylor Jody. “While every colleague was committed to making this new reality a success, we were in uncharted territory. Much of our workflow and processes needed a rapid rethink.”

Brex’s design team felt the shockwaves more than most. To keep critical projects moving forward, they needed to share designs with project managers, product and design teams, and other key stakeholders in the product life-cycle.

While designers did their best to organize Zoom meetings to present designs and talk through key aspects of their work, it was nearly impossible to get every critical stakeholder on the same call at the same time.

“Designers were spending huge chunks of their workday trying to organize meetings at distance, and it was proving really difficult to hunt down all the feedback they needed to keep up with engineering and product deadlines,” says Taylor.

In addition, designers were using document-heavy processes to keep individual stakeholders updated. Because they were working across multiple projects at any one time, it wasn’t unusual to be writing to 50 Google docs a week, responding to Slacks from colleagues, and writing lengthy emails.

All of which was critical time being snatched from what they did best—product design. Meanwhile, the consequences of not getting the right feedback from stakeholders at the right time included costly bottlenecks, wasted time and efficiency, and delays getting products to market.

As a dynamic business determined to continue on the path of explosive growth, Brex needed a solution to the friction and inefficiencies they were feeling in the feedback process.

Solution

  • Deliver fast and flexible asynchronous design critiques with Loom
  • Provide total visibility of project progress and ensure every critical stakeholder provides input when it’s needed
  • Recalibrate their design feedback cycle, so it saves time for everyone

When Taylor started searching for a solution, he learned that others in the company were using video messaging platform Loom to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of their communications.

Taylor contacted Loom and began a month-long trial. While Brex were keen to get designers recording video at the earliest opportunity, they decided to build out rules and guidelines first to ensure users drew maximum benefit. These included ideal timings for videos, so designers kept the attention span of those they needed feedback from.

Brex also developed an internal Slack channel that designers could easily post their Looms to, making it easy to gather feedback from multiple stakeholders in one place. To ensure the new workflow was an efficient addition to colleagues’ work schedules, Brex confined the creation and posting of looms to one day a week. This meant that stakeholders could book out time on a single day to go through all the Loom submissions as efficiently as possible.

Because the platform is so easy to use, designers immediately began producing in-person videos that gave the same live and engaging experience of a synchronous meeting, without any of the organization and admin trail. Designers could share their screen, share their work, and talk through all the important aspects of their design.

Within weeks, the process of gathering and actioning feedback went from painful to painless. Key stakeholders could easily find time in their schedule to watch relevant updates and provide the timely, live feedback that had previously been so difficult to gather.

Word quickly spread that Loom was bringing massive efficiencies to the design team. Consequently, other teams embraced the platform for their own requirements. As the benefits of Loom spread through Brex like wildfire, Brex signed up for a larger, wall-to-wall partnership with Loom.

Results

  • Huge time savings for designers, engineers, and project managers
  • Output from designers skyrockets & faster feedback loops
  • Bottlenecks in the product life-cycle eliminated for good

Building Loom videos into their design review process has saved Brex time and money, improved visibility and transparency across the design process, and eliminated bottlenecks with engineering and product teams.

With so many synchronous meetings now replaced with short and convenient Loom reviews — all of which are actioned on a single day each week — designers, engineers and product managers are saving enormous chunks of time.

Because designers get feedback across their full range of projects in one place and in an easily digestible and timely way, they have hours back in their diaries to deliver more design work. As a result, the velocity and quality of their output has skyrocketed.

With videos posted in a single, easy-to-access location, every critical stakeholder now sees and contributes to design critiques. Even better, videos are so much easier to consume than convoluted written documents, so stakeholders have a better understanding of the project and provide higher-value feedback.

Best of all, engineers are now reviewing designs much earlier than before, boosting collaboration and accelerating project delivery. Taylor says his designers have been invigorated since using Loom, because the platform removes so many of the doc-heavy processes that created fatigue throughout the day.