It’s the most wonderful time of the year…. Eight words we’re already hearing a lot of as we rush headlong into another buzzing Christmas season (where has the year gone?!). So with scarcely a moment to draw breath, we thought we’d hit the pause button and give you a round up of our 2018 best bits, as well as a few nuggets of joy that have happened along the way.
The First Six Months...
One of our first milestones in the year came back in May when we relaunched our Elixel website. With a fresh, new look and design, we made it easier for visitors to find their way around. We also took the opportunity to raise our blogging game too, posting some techy and non-techy articles, together with company updates and cool things we’ve come across.
The feedback we’ve had since relaunch so far has been really positive. People are loving the simplicity and ease of use of the site, and our blogs are getting more engagement than ever as we share them out across our social channels. It was a long time coming, but we’re pleased with how well it’s working for us.
And June was also a month to remember for our Head of App Development, Christian, as he tied the knot with long-term girlfriend, Emily. Awww - you guys!
The All-Important Second Half...
As we got our summer groove on, the windows were thrown open and the fans were in overdrive as the freak heatwave took over. But that wasn’t enough to stop us from developing, creating, and building a whole range of projects for our clients.
To kick off the second half of the year, in July we were finally able to reveal the project we’d been working on. Yes, we were transported back to our childhoods as the new website for the world's longest running children's TV show, Sooty, was finally launched. I think we can all mark that one down as a personal highlight of 2018. Check out www.thesootyshow.co.uk.
With cooler weather finally rolling in, October saw our Head of Web Development, Becky co-running #GIRLCODE - a free coding class for girls aged 11-13 who want to learn to code. Supported by local luminaries including Vualto, Women In STEM Plymouth (WiSP), and of course, Elixel, #GIRLCODE aimed to encourage girls in the Plymouth area to consider careers in technology and software development - and it went down a storm!
And November proved to be hugely busy inside and outside the office too….
First, we welcomed the news that our Becky had been shortlisted for the Western Morning News 'Young Business Person of the Year' award. Sadly, there was no gong to bring home for Becky this time, but as a finalist who showed flair, resilience and wisdom beyond her years to get there, it was a fantastic effort.
Secondly, a crowdfunding investment app that we’d completed a series of user experience consultancy on was listed as the Apple App Store’s 'app of the day' in November and, in the process, landed in the top 25 business apps. The app - Crowdcube - lets anyone discover and explore potential investment opportunities, and is available for both iOS and Android.
Thirdly, we welcomed our new Office Administrator, Jenny, to the team. Joining us from the National Trust, Jenny will be covering Aimee’s role as she heads off on maternity leave in Mid-December. Welcome to the gang, Jenny! And good luck to Aimee as she and her husband Mark, prepare for the birth of their second child on December 27th - a new brother for 2 ½ year-old, Alyssa. Should be a Christmas to remember!
And there’s obviously something in the water here in Elixel towers because as we bid a temporary farewell to Aimee, our Creative Director, Paul, and his wife, Bronwynne are also expecting. With their first, a boy, due on December 30th, it looks like it will be a very special New Year! Good luck to both of you.
As a final footnote to wrap up this crazy year, we’re pleased to see our Plymouth Web meetups have become more and more popular since we started. Centred around web design and development, over the last year we’ve seen our members increase from just over 200 to 405 (at the time of writing)!
If you fancy joining us at any future events in 2019 to talk all things web with like-minded peeps, listen to some awesome speakers, and have a drink or two with us, visit www.meetup.com for more details. We’ll see you there!
So that’s pretty much us over and out for another brilliant year. We’ll be closing the doors to Elixel towers at 5.30pm on Friday, 21st December ready for a relaxing break (Aimee or Paul might have a different take on that), so get in touch if you’d like to start discussing your 2019 projects.
Thanks to all our clients, colleagues, and friends for an amazing 2018, and we’ll see you, raring to go, at 9.00am on Wednesday, 2nd January.
Happy Christmas from us all!