24Slides Builds an OKR Framework to Create Alignment Across Remote Teams

August 2020

Headquarters

Copenhagen, Denmark

Industry

Design

Employees

100

A team of presentation designers committed to excellence

24Slides is a team of more than one hundred professional designers who specialize in presentations and provide design services at affordable prices. With offices in Denmark, Peru, Indonesia, and Ukraine, 24Slides showcases the incredible talent and competitiveness of designers in emerging countries by giving them the tools to compete in the global market. 

With the purpose of building a better, fairer model of digital outsourcing, 24Slides has a mission to redefine the idea of outsourcing in the global market and create a brighter future for all talent in emerging countries. Over the past several years, the company has found success in setting up dedicated design teams for enterprises. To manage this growth, Founder and CEO, Tobias Schelle, turned to the OKR methodology to keep the team aligned and focused on the right goals. 

Adopting the OKR methodology at scale

Goals were always a priority for 24Slides, but quarter after quarter, the leadership team began to realize that their corporate and departmental goals had minimal alignment. Each team would set their own goals based on historical data and various initiatives that would impact the company. As the executives reviewed goal progress, it became difficult to assess how each goal was linked to one another. 

“It would feel very disconnected to set overall revenue goals for the company without knowing how each department would contribute to that,” said Schelle. “Or if we didn’t reach a company goal, we couldn’t point to exactly why or how to improve the next quarter.”

Over time, it gradually became evident that 24Slides needed an organized framework to align its various teams. Schelle looked to the OKR methodology, which allows individual teams to set goals that support company-level objectives while also enabling organizational transparency and communication around goals. 

Leaning towards software to create alignment

After deciding to restructure the company’s goals using the OKR methodology, 24Slides documented goals in dozens of excel spreadsheets, only updating these spreadsheets once a quarter. A common occurrence for leaders managing goals in spreadsheets is that their goals are forgotten about until late into the quarter. This frequently leads to a hasty scramble to at the end of the quarter to hit these goals, which are most often missed because the goals weren't considered until it was too late. For this reason, many organizations using OKRs choose to implement them with a software-based solution that can prevent this common pitfall by making OKRs scaleable and intuitive. With OKRs taking a collaborative, team-centered approach to set goals, Schelle knew that he wanted to manage goals using a software-based solution. 

Before discovering Koan, Schelle began searching for a dedicated software platform that could help implement objectives and key results at 24Slides. When evaluating these tools, Schelle tested two other platforms for a couple of hours alongside Koan. The team ultimately settled on Koan because of its intuitive and user-friendly interface. Koan was the right tool to help 24Slides deliver on the OKRs superpowers: focus, alignment, commitments, and transparency.

Creating engagement and prioritizing transparency as a distributed team

As the company managed substantial growth year-over-year, the top priorities for 24Slides were to increase revenue and prioritize employee engagement. Since adopting Koan, the 24Slides team has seen noticeable improvements across the distributed teams in all four different countries.

“Koan has honestly made a huge difference for 24Slides. We now have people in Indonesia and Peru that are much more connected to the business. Koan has given everyone a much better understanding of where we are heading as a presentation design company.” said Schelle.

Koan is also a key part of facilitating the 24Slides culture by being a centralized, engaging tool for all things involving OKRs and status tracking. The team at 24Slides has particularly found the most value from the Weekly Reflections feature because it helps employees to highlight their priorities and gives everyone a chance to provide input or gain the context they need from other team members. With dedicated design offices across several countries, Koan’s Weekly Reflections help to create visibility with what key employees are working. In addition, the weekly status updates help to provide structure in meetings so that the geographically diverse team understands activities across all the corporate offices. 

Schelle comments, “The feedback from employees using Koan is very positive and the contributions are much better and more frequent because everyone understands where 24Slides is heading. It’s definitely helped to keep employees engaged and moving in the same direction together.”

Deploying OKRs using Koan has helped the 24Slides teams to optimize and align their goals to maximize their impact and ultimately drive growth. 

“Koan helps provide clarity and structure across the entire business to ensure that everyone understands what the company is trying to achieve and how all individuals are contributing to this each day, no matter where they are located,” says Schelle.

Koan users

24

Enagement

90%

Koan NPS

25

Reflections

1135

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