How MAXMEDIALAB got their teams in sync

In just over eight years, Sydney full-service media agency MAXMEDIALAB (and its founder, Lynette Phillips) has built one of Australia's fastest and most talked-about studios from the ground up.

Now with two offices, 50+ employees and a client roster of the world's most recognisable luxury brands, their success has come down to an innovative structure, commitment to excellence and understanding of the market now largely emulated by their peers. 

Another key part to this success lies in their ‘full service’ approach, with a media, events, publicity and influencer agency all housed under one roof.  “Being full service means a client can communicate their objectives and we can execute in any number of ways from a single session. That adds a lot of value for them and their time” says Phillips. 

“The workplace is changing and people want to be flexible. With Dropbox Business we can allow staff access to the files they need wherever they are.” — Lynette Phillips, MAXMEDIALAB

Though advantageous, this full-service structure created barriers to cross-team collaboration, particularly when multiple teams were working with one client simultaneously. A legacy server infrastructure also meant their massive file database had no flexibility in security, speed or accessibility outside of the office. “We had issues with server speeds, as well as security issues with everyone having access to the same folders and the lack of access off-site. There were a lot of gaps to fill, so we sought an alternative and that’s when we were presented with Dropbox.” 

“I have to say, our original IT supplier was very hesitant about Dropbox” admits Phillips, pointing to fears on security and the potential loss of a huge number of files in the cloud. “They’re advice was ‘don’t do it’.  But I was frustrated with the current system and had spoken to other CEOs who made us really open to it.”

After a transition that went ‘without a hitch’, Dropbox Business immediately allowed the MAXMEDIALAB teams to stay in sync while bolstering their security and accessibility capability. 

Instantaneously, Dropbox’s real time editing and commenting allowed MAXMEDIALAB to dramatically increase its speed of execution. Each month, over 500 folders are being added, edited and shared in Dropbox so multiple teams can collaborate on a single client without confusion. Staff and trusted collaborators can access the latest versions of files no matter where they are in the world. And using Dropbox Paper for project kick-off and ideation means anyone can throw their ideas onto a blank canvas as it turns into team inspiration. 

“With the server, you could only upload or download files in work hours, but we are always on. Sometimes we’re working with a client on New York time, other times we’re working with a European brand on their time. It’s not always nine-to-five, and Dropbox is intrinsic to that”.

Switching to Dropbox Business was also a catalyst for an internal restructure that helped boost productivity and communication within and between teams. “It’s important that each new brief or asset is structured so one representative from each business sector has access to it. That has been really beneficial for us.”

With the help of cloud service partner OzeIT, logically organised project folders reduced the amount of time they spent searching for files, and linking multiple third-party cloud services has created a ‘massive collaboration platform’ for the entire agency. “Dropbox was the right solution” says OzeIT’s Andrew Henze.  “MAXMEDIALAB’s Dropbox Business subscription gave them multi-admin access, device approvals and a suite of security options that were relevant to them.” 

Dropbox Business security features also means file permissions can be granted or revoked at any time — important when staff members, competing clients or key industry publicists come and go in an industry that runs on privacy. “I love that while file and folder access can be granted, it can also be removed and you can see it all in the dashboard. Clients need to know that too and it's really important to review.” 

“With a Dropbox Business subscription you have complete control in the activity log to see who is accessing or changing what files, and if set up correctly you can segregate any critical data away from people who aren't meant to have access to it.” — Andrew Henze, OzeIT

MAXMEDIALAB will continue to innovate, while Dropbox continues to power a fast-paced collaborative approach for increasingly unique clients. “International brands often look at Australia as a testing ground, so we’ve used that to our advantage to be creative. We’re always considering how we can augment ideas, and we love being the agency that can adapt so quickly. That sets us apart.”