Sophos sees clearly with Asana

A Sophos office
  • Sophos logo
  • Number of employees
    • 3,000
  • Countries they operate in
    • 119
  • Tasks assigned in 6 months
    • 11,000

The marketing organization at Sophos is so large, global, and interconnected that it needs a metaphorical front desk just to welcome its own colleagues who need internal support.

Sophos is an enterprise cybersecurity company based in the UK, with over 3,000 employees across 119 countries. Its marketing organization is split into the usual teams, such as product marketing, field marketing for programs and events, marketing operations, and corporate marketing.

Corporate marketing ensures Sophos’s brand consistency and determines its direction. Dawn Jensen, Senior Global Programs Manager on the team, describes their role as “the main brand ambassadors of Sophos. We set the brand and tone and make sure everyone is singing from the same hymnal.”

Anything and everything that touches the Sophos brand needs to go through corporate marketing. They process all requests for web and brand assets, promotional materials, and UX design. How quickly they process incoming requests either empowers other teams or slows them down.

Dawn stepped into the role of “corporate marketing concierge” to manage requests and pull in resources. As soon as the team started using Asana to gather and sort requests, they got instant visibility into the type and volume they were receiving. This helps them better support their marketing colleagues, and gives management plenty of data to steer corporate marketing in the right direction.

The black box

Previously, the way corporate marketing processed requests left everybody in the dark about what was going on. A marketer would submit a request by sending an email to an alias.

“It was slow and unreliable. Sometimes, nobody would respond for weeks,” Dawn says. “And then all of a sudden, you'd receive the asset you requested. There was zero visibility in the process and it took a lot longer than it should have.”

Gaining visibility with Asana

Corporate marketing decided to put a “front desk” in place using Asana to help the team better partner with other departments.

They replaced the email alias with Asana and a form integration. Now, a marketer fills out a form, which routes the request to a project in Asana, and every form submission translates to a task in the project. Corporate marketing works through the request while the person who requested the web or brand work follows along.

Sophos office

“Clarification and communication immediately improved,” says Dawn. “Our field marketing team was delighted at the responses they were getting and the new visibility into requests.”

After these positive results, they revamped the form to ask more detailed questions, which helped corporate marketing better scope a project, bringing clarity to the entire work order.

Corporate marketing now better serves its internal customers, and they complete many more requests. “It’s given people a faster way to raise their hand and ask for help,” says Dawn.

Steering the corporate marketing organization

Asana also helps corporate marketing optimize itself as an organization.

With their email alias solution, there was no way to gather data, making it difficult for management to assess the volume of requests. “It was hard for us to build a team without knowing how we were going to keep them busy,” she says. “We didn’t know what kind of workflows were being followed and what was being worked on.”

Asana gives corporate marketing leadership the ability to better plan resources and more clearly see the team’s processes. They can also segment requests by size. “Asana has given everyone a way to separate ‘business as usual,’ like a simple typo correction, from more complicated work,” she says.

Asana also helps quantify data for upper management. As Dawn notes, “With Asana, we can see that there have been nearly 11,000 tasks assigned in six months—that's a big deal! With this data, we can identify patterns and emerging issues that might require additional resources, new processes, or longer lead times.”

Detecting and improving inefficiencies

Corporate marketing can also use Asana to spot duplicate work and implement a top-down fix or help teams collaborate.

One day, Dawn’s boss had a feeling that corporate marketing was getting a lot of requests for signature files—the images at the bottom of people’s emails. “We were able to do a search in Asana to prove how many there were... and there were a lot,” says Dawn. This helped them create a standard version for everyone, improving brand consistency.

Because Sophos operates globally, work is often duplicated in different countries. For example, they host a Partner Conference every year in 12 cities, from Kyoto to Dubrovnik—an annual kickoff to show partners what’s on the roadmap for Sophos in the coming year.

This year, Sophos used Asana to hold the conference organizers’ plans in one project, giving them visibility into what other cities’ planners had done. “We tracked the location of each conference event with a custom field,” Dawn says. “Every location had similar requirements, so rather than having to jump between multiple projects in Asana, we could use one project and list all locations within it.”

Sophos office reception

They also worked with an event management company and used a custom field in Asana to show the different phases of deliverables from creation to approval through to production. This way, everyone could scan the progress.

With custom fields and a central hub for tasks, Asana helped Sophos find consistency in the event planning process and standardize it across teams around the world, both internal and external.

A welcome desk for a more organized team

Through newfound visibility into the asset request process, corporate marketing is now a more powerful partner for the field marketing team, empowering them by supplying marketing assets quickly, consistently, and transparently.

“I love that corporate marketing and field marketing at Sophos is a close partnership,” says Dawn. The system is working so well it’s expanding to serve IT and HR teams’ requests.

More data also gives Sophos’s corporate marketing team new opportunities to direct the organization’s future, optimize resource allocation, and find efficiencies. The team operates across four continents, yet it’s never been more united. A welcoming front desk doesn’t just empower their partners—it empowers them, too.

“Clarification and communication immediately improved. Our field marketing team was delighted at the new visibility into requests.”
—Dawn Jensen, Senior Global Programs Manager, Sophos