Elton John
Nik Roberts
Nik Roberts
22nd Mar 2017

Award winning work, whether we win or not

I love what we do for all of our customers and partners. Watching our team grow over the last seven and a half years has been inspiring, and the quality of work we do just keeps on getting better and better.

We’re always experimenting, innovating and developing our abilities, and I can’t wait to see what our talented designers, developers and management team will come up with next. Feedback from our customers is great too - they like our work and they value the energy, effort and expertise we bring, that helps their businesses be more successful online.

This is enough, I thought. A job well done, and happy customers.That’s all I need.

And then Monday arrived and we were told that one of our projects has been shortlisted for an award. It made me see a side of myself I didn’t know existed - a competitive side! I really need to win this award!

The ELTons are presented by the British Council for work in the field of English Language Teaching, and the Text Inspector project that we’ve been working on for the past few years has been shortlisted in the Digital Innovation category. We've already been selected from a large international field, and now the competition is hotting up. I hope we’ll win.  

Text Inspector is a smart new way for teachers, students, and academics to measure and analyse the complexity of written English texts. It’s designed by Professor Stephen Bax and he came to us in 2014 looking for help in realising his ambitions. Since then the project has involved most of our team at one time or another, with work in technical design and build, UI and UX design, hosting, and product strategy.

We’ve had a heck of a learning curve, knowing nothing at all about the science of analysing texts, but this project has been a great showcase for our collaborative approach to development. Stephen brings a ton of academic expertise in English Language teaching, and we give him honest, practical and high quality solutions to help develop the product and make it more useful . Text Inspector’s already been used in over 100 countries by tens of thousands of users, and Stephen is full of exciting plans for the future.

We’ve had a lot of fun working with Stephen on the project, and we're all delighted with the work we've produced. I really really hope we win, but if not, at least we can be rightfully proud of the great ideas and the teamwork that got us to the awards ceremony. I’m sure there’ll be many more ceremonies to come, for Text Inspector and for Versantus!

Before I go, let me say a teary “thank you” to our lovely customers, our dedicated team, our supportive suppliers, and my beautiful friends, family, and to the Academy my cats. I love you all.

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