Caroline Baker, Design Reality's Director, Looks Back on 2020 and Forward to 2021
As we come to the end of a year that I think many would say has been a year like no other, I’d like to look back and reflect on how things have been at Design Reality and what we’ve achieved and learnt.
The main thing we have learnt is that Design Reality is a strong and robust business, built on excellent foundations, that has weathered the storm of 2020 and come out the other side with very few scrapes.
In March 2020, when everything was so unsteady in the world, we were financially strong, project-rich and future-planned enough to know that the miniature world of Design Reality was going to be OK. We knew that the business was going to keep our team working strong, which we hoped would give comfort to our employees and their families.
Thinking back to March, April and May, I would use one word: Chaotic! Our Director Troy Baker is one of the leading experts on designing masks for respiratory protection in the UK and so his opinion and assistance were being sought from all over the UK, at every level of industry, healthcare and government. In addition, our team were keen to help the local community, providing 3D printed door openers, Fit Testing support and lending our TSI Portacount machine to Glan Clwyd Hospital for as long as they needed it. It was through these chaotic months that we began to work closer with the Welsh Government and their SmartCymru Innovation team to see how we could bring together Design Reality’s 20 years of experience in getting respiratory products to market, our ISO:13485 Medical Devices accreditation and their contacts in the Welsh NHS to find a solution that the healthcare system truly needed.
The team at Design Reality consistently manage to understand the user’s needs to design and develop next-generation products for healthcare, emergency response services and respiratory device testing, among others. With testing and certification set to be completed just into the new year, the Design Reality team will have gone from concept to certified product being shipped to customers in just under 9 months - an impressive accomplishment for a team of this size.
2020 marked our 20th year anniversary. It hasn’t quite been the year for celebrations, but definitely the year to be thankful for everything we’ve got and achieved. The three Directors want to thank the team at DR for their hard work and co-operation in adapting to the ever-changing working environment. Everyone has demonstrated outstanding work ethic whilst working from home during months of lock-down and has shown resilience in coming back to the office when needed. We also thank our clients, who have continued to have faith in our abilities to deliver their projects, despite economic and political uncertainties. We hope that everyone has a safe and restful Christmas and New Year, and that 2021 is everything everyone is wishing for!