Preparations for hybrid workplaces see demand return for leading AV firm

AV installation

AN ACCEPTANCE that the long-term world of work and education will require a mix of physical and virtual presence is driving a swift recovery for a Glasgow-based audio-visual business.

Recent months have seen employee-owned Mediascape secure significant contracts with a leading multi-national beverage company, the NHS and a host of top-tier legal and accountancy practices, to deliver solutions that seamlessly connect workers in premises with those working from home.

Technology that enables huddle spaces and boardrooms to facilitate video conferencing calls, is being seen as essential in preparing workplaces once the virus becomes more manageable, with demand doubling on the first two months of 2020.

It’s now enabling the £4m-plus turnover firm to return to pre-pandemic business levels as it eyes a strong remainder 2021, with several six-figure contracts close to completion.

Niall MacDonald took over as Managing Director six months ago as part of the exit-plan of founders Angus and Shona Knight, who sold a majority of their shareholding to the employees in early 2018.

He said: “The pandemic has hit the AV sector hard, with clients limiting the number of staff in offices, educational buildings shutting down and more of us working and learning remotely. There was no escaping it.

“However, the benefits of our employee-owned structure are bearing fruit. We have been able to retain our teams, who have pulled together, and in turn taken an active role in guiding us through this crisis.

“We advocate leadership from throughout our business, and it’s been vital that we have a clear and open communication style, especially during these times when we aren’t physically together.

“Organisations are now at a point where their views on the long-term future of workplaces and educational buildings are becoming clearer. Most are realising the need for a hybrid approach becoming a long-term norm – but their settings are not often appropriately equipped.

“We’ve seen the huge benefits remote working can bring. But at the same time, we all know what we’re missing from being in a shared physical setting.”

Among the solutions that are proving popular are sensor-driven AV systems that can work hands-free, as well as ‘Bring Your Own Meeting (BYOM) systems that allow users to drive meetings from their own device while using all of the hardware within the room.

Mediascape designs, supplies, installs and maintains integrated audio-visual systems throughout central Scotland. Centrally located in Glasgow’s Port Dundas area, covering the central belt and a satellite office in Inverness.

Its clients include blue-chip names in the world of business, healthcare and education. It became majority owned by an Employee-Ownership Trust in 2018, meaning most shares are held in trust on behalf of its employees.

Its board reports to the Employee Ownership Trust. All employees are owners, ensuring pride in the brand and the customer experience.

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