Faces of Orbit Spaces: Alex Bull, Managing Partner. Effectus Analytics AS.
Effectus Analytics' 14-person team leverages advanced analytics to build custom productivity tools that improve e-commerce and online advertising processes for enterprise clients, so Alex Bull, the company's Managing Partner, knows a thing or two about efficiency.
Orbit's Emily Northway spoke to Alex about his experience leveraging the Orbit experience to explore, trial and establish a new home base for Effectus.
Emily: How was working from home for you Alex?
Alex: In the beginning I was happy working remotely. In some ways it was a huge time saver and because our team was digital-first anyway, it was almost zero effort to pivot to collaborating 100% online. But after a while, being at home 24/7 began encroaching on time with my family. My colleagues were experiencing similar challenges.
The complete lack of face-to-face, human interaction was noticeably less inspiring and was threatening to take a toll on our collective creativity and energy. We wanted — no, we needed — to find a better balance of digital and physical connection without sacrificing the benefits of working from home. "Pyjamas and advanced analytics are mutually exclusive," said no data scientist ever.
Emily: What attracted you to Orbit?
Alex: I initially heard about Orbit through a friend, and subsequently, after a meeting with Orbit's CEO, Wasim Rashid, I was sold on the idea of curated workspaces. But, like everything we do at Effectus, the proof is in the analysis, so I trialled a few Orbit spaces and ended up settling on Skøyen Atrium. It's right next to the Flytoget and is much more central than Fornebu where I live.
Emily: Back to your work-home balance challenge for a minute — have you found any noticeable benefits on that front?
Alex: As a powerlifting enthusiast, the time between when I eat and when I work out is mission critical. I need to stick to a streamlined, predictable schedule as much as possible. Before I started working from Skøyen Atrium, I was juggling time at my Fornebu office, picking up kids and fitting the gym in as best I could. Ideally, I need to start my workout 90 minutes after a meal so having a gym close to my office is super important for me. Skøyen Atrium lets me do just that. Nowadays, when I get home, I'm (almost) 100% Alex the husband and father.
Emily: And from your Managing Partner point of view?
Alex: As you probably guessed, efficiency and effectiveness are at the core of what we do at Effectus Analytics. Although our work primarily manifests itself in numbers, integrations and dashboards for our customers, we're keenly aware of the effect our business practices have on the environment and the quality of the work life of our team members. We're a young company, so in the first instance, being able to contract the ideal amount of premium quality space with flexible options, versus making an educated guess at our short-and medium-term needs and committing to a lease that ties us down, means we remain agile. It also means that we're part of the solution when it comes to resolving the surplus inventory waste in the commercial office ecosystem.
Skøyen Atrium's central location makes it much more convenient for us to meet with both clients and partners. The fact that it's easily accessed by public transportation means I don't have to drive to or from work anymore and, bonus, I can walk to the gym on schedule and unstressed.
Emily: And the environment inside Skøyen Atrium? How has that experience been for you?
Alex: I have been working here solo for a month as an Orbit customer. I'm blown away with how bright, spacious and well appointed it is out-of-the-box. We're fine-tuning the logistics of bringing the rest of the Effectus team here as Skøyen Atrium clients as we speak. It was a no-brainer for us to be able to explore and experience Orbit's inventory with your personal attention and support and be able to carry those lessons forward to an arrangement that's a win-win for us and our chosen Orbit vendor.
Emily: What workplace trend are you most enthusiastic about? And what characteristic do you think is most important for remote workers to cultivate?
Alex: Before I answer those questions, I just want to say that I'm looking forward to seeing where Orbit lands next on the planet. Your formula "just worked" for me. I follow innovation and startup culture, and, of course, powerlifting trends and I'm constantly reminded that in all three cases, no matter where we are in the process, it's all about showing up and doing the work. I believe we're really still in the early days of redefining work's relationship with place so I think all of us — management, staff and contractors — need to embrace humility and be open to creating space for honesty and understanding with each other — both at work (wherever it is) and at home.
Emily: What would you say is your biggest takeaway from your Orbit exploration?
Alex: Without Orbit, and its slick app experience, I may never have found Skøyen Atrium, or discovered it too late. It was a featured space that I hadn't heard of. Equally as impressive has been our Orbit onboarding experience: having a curated collection of incredible spaces at one affordable price, with zero long-term commitment, meant that there were no surprises. It actually made the whole journey an enjoyable adventure. I might even go so far as to say it's easier than buying work-from-home pyjamas. But don't quote me on that.
Alex at Effectus Analytics is another one of the fascinating Faces of Orbit Spaces. As curators of flexible workspaces that inspire and foster community, we Orbiters are just as fascinated by our clients' stories as we are by the culture, environment and possibility that our host partners bring to the equation.
We'd love to tell your remote work or co-working story. To land yourself in a future edition of "Faces of Orbit Spaces" flip open your communicator and beam a message to firstname.lastname@example.org