Information overload impacts on Employee Health

Information Overload Impacting Employees Health

Looking to warm-up the crowd at a conference on Corporate Wellbeing? Just mention ‘Information Overload’. Too much sharing is the new normal, it’s eating up hours of our time every day and, it might have got a wry smile from our audience at the recent Citywork event, but how overwhelmed most of us are by it, is no joke.

87% Employees Disengaged

According to a recent Gallup survey, 87% of employees feel dissatisfied and disengaged at  work. Even factoring a percentage of diehard malcontents, that’s a hefty chunk of checked out people who’re isolated in environments with greater communication potential than we’ve ever known.

It’s shocking, and it’s bad for business health: companies with engaged workforces outperform their peers by 147%. Let’s assume they aren’t using carrier pigeons, and face the idea that it must be possible to work productively, even in noisy, tech-saturated, information overloaded environments.


How do most employees feel?

How does this make you feel?

It’s human nature to have the fear of missing out (FOMO) on something and communication apps are specifically designed to feed that fear. Facebook’s original president, Sean Parker, has openly admitted that, ‘Facebook intentionally sought to addict users by exploiting a vulnerability in human psychology’.

Constantly checking devices is directly linked to increased stress levels according to recent reports from the American Psychological Institute. We’re more discontented, anxious, stressed and depressed in our personal lives, and we’re just as unhealthy at work, because social networks – with corporate tweaks – are now driving business communication too.

In a relatively short space of time we’ve reprogrammed ourselves to be open to every distraction: just in case. The average employee sends over 40 emails daily, receives upwards of 121, and spends 28% of the day dealing with emails alone.

Taking back control

So how do you go about solving information overload without throwing everything out, sharpening some pencils, and going rogue? Tempting as the thought of how good that silence would sound for about 30 seconds, it’s not the solution.

Taking back control of how you receive information and determining what’s important, and what’s just noise, can increase business productivity by up to 24%. We know this, because it’s what nooQ does and why we designed it in the first place.

It’s the most innovative digital workplace communication platform, and has the awards to prove it. But more importantly it’s about effective engagement, enabling employees to work to their full potential, and turning down the volume on distractions. Which, when you consider every single one of us can expect to be needlessly interrupted every 11 minutes during the working day, frees up a vast amount of time for your best minds to do their best work.



Did we convert an entire room of delegates to nooQ in less than an hour? 

Solving Information Overload at Citywork Event

Presenting at Citywork Event

Fair to say we grabbed attention away from devices – hardly any phones were checked during our presentation. We definitely opened up minds to the idea that information overload is damaging corporate wellbeing.

And since companies already using nooQ are the ones with engaged employees, outperforming the competition by up to 147%, and actively increasing productivity by 24%, nobody can say they didn’t get a timely health warning.  


Haven’t tried nooQ yet?

Contact us for a trial run and see your productivity increase.


nooQ targets corporate wellbeing

nooQ hosting workshop at Citywork Conference


The upcoming Citywork conference is held in Edinburgh 24th April 2018. The event will focus on how to boost corporate wellbeing within the Scottish economy.

The promotion of a healthy workplace is vital to retention and recruitment as well as improvement in profitability. Both Edinburgh and Glasgow are economic powerhouses and the health of both the financial and commercial markets are essential if we are to ensure Scotland remains a powerful force.

Hosting one of the workshops, nooQ will focus on how corporations can free their best minds to concentrate and innovate. Business channels have moved on leaps and bounds since the invention of email, but the current communications channels have not caught up. Even the most successful teams in the world are hindered by the amount of time they spend filtering through huge amounts of information on a daily basis and talking about work rather than doing work.

nooQ offers a solution to this problem.

Find out more about the upcoming event here.


What we learned from our first hackathon

Team nooQ get nooQing Homelessness at Hackathon

Two months ago I came across an unusual post on LinkedIn that was outside my normal subject matter but one I thought would be worth a shot. An event company Gallus Events, were organising the inaugural Homelessness Hackathon in Glasgow.

Similar to other cities, Glasgow has a growing homelessness problem, the number of beggars in the city centre is extremely disturbing. My wife used to work in local government housing department for the homeless, so given my tech background, love of ideation & innovation and a sprinkling of making a small difference; I contacted Gallus to offer our nooQ platform and expertise to help. I’ve never participated in a hackathon before but know some people who have run them in the past. If you have not attended one before it is a great concept where the basic premise is to come up with a new idea and then build as much of it as possible (hack it together) in a weekend. Therefore it involves a lot of refining and shaping initial ideas, maybe build a website, get some feedback from possible users on how to shape the ideas, get feedback on solutions and finally present your work at the end of the weekend.

The Homeless Hackathon was a fantastic event where people from various backgrounds and with different skills, offered their time and self organised into teams to work on one of the proposed projects.

The proposed projects were :

    • Harbr – A signposting app to make it easier for people to find the right help amongst a myriad of government services and charities. There are a lot of services and help available but it can be very difficult to find and access.
    • All-In Training website – A new website for a training provider to help organisations working with the homeless.
    • se:me – A lot of people don’t carry small change any more. Provide a way of contactless Apple Pay / smart card to take and redeem donations in local stores. Also looking to provide training via rehabilitation partners.
    • RSPV – Risk assessment & Real time reporting of location and health of vulnerable people. Simon Community is an amazing local charity that monitor the vulnerable in the city centre, need real time app as current phone and forms system can cause delays and inefficiency.
    • Heat 20 – reusable portable heater for 70F heat for up to 8 hours. The hot water bottle replacement, that can run for 8 hours. Invaluable during cold weather.
    • Food Network – app to allow approved kitchens and restaurants to donate excess food and provide delivery. Phenomenal amount of excess food goes to waste. Local charity that distributes food, looking for real time app to make it easier to donate and distribute the excess food.


The nooQ team really enjoyed taking part in the event and on reflection there were some valuable nuggets of learning.

We know homelessness is an extremely complex problem to solve. Even if you could instantly provide everyone with accommodation, it would not solve the underlying social problems of mental and physical health.


5 things we learned from the Homelessness Hackathon

  1. 90% of vulnerable people you see begging on the streets, typically have temporary accommodation. There are less than 50 regulars who are sleeping rough in Glasgow City centre every night and the Simon Community and other services know all of them. Any new ones can now be reported via new RSPV app.
  2. There is still a massive problem of undocumented homelessness, people sharing sofas etc but homelessness can easily occur to people with well paid jobs who can instantly become homeless if they fall out with their partner and family lives far away. Hospitals see people with Armani jeans, Hugo Boss shirts, smartphones but with nowhere to go after a fall out with who they were living with.
  3. Like most startup events, ideas and teams come in all shapes and sizes. It was fascinating watching the early pitches, how the team dynamics of a group of volunteers worked together shaping the ideas and potential options. Then, after some long days, how much the ideas had improved.
  4. There were several overlapping ideas for signposting and mapping type applications and at the hackathon they were consolidated but there will still be an ongoing problem of keeping the data up to date on what services and help is available. The knowledge to point the right person at the right time to the right help will be ongoing challenge but definite scope for improvement.
  5. We will be launching a new version of nooQ in May, so used the pre-launch version for testing and feedback at the event. We received some great feedback and 5* reviews but also noticed a few bugs and improvements we have added in to the pre-launch sprint backlog. We have been working a lot on the user onboarding process, so when a government employee, non technical could explain and understand nooQ even down to the fact that we show unread items in brighter opacity than read items, was very satisfying.

The other great thing is that we continue to see project activity and follow up on nooQ after the event is finished. As a nooQ team we were feeding back on all team’s ideas and will continue to do so, specifically we will be working with se:me on finding payments and banking solution for people that can be difficult to validate as they have no fixed address. nooQ for homelessness will be available for free, for everyone.

So  register, get involved, ask questions, provide ideas, surveys and chat to make these projects a reality and fulfil their potential.


You can still get involved at

Finally congratulations  to RSPV for winning the overall event!

However I also loved the se:me idea & ‘Heat 20’ for going outside the web app route and to build a physical product prototype within a weekend. That was impressive. The Food Network solution was extremely slick and has potential to be rolled-out globally when proven and hooked up to a delivery network like Deliveroo.

Overall the Homeless Hackathon event was a big success which we hope to see repeated in Glasgow and other locations too.


**Gallus is a fantastic Scots word, which is a mix of, confidence, cheeky and style normally in a tongue in cheek way.

“He was pure gallus” Pure means extremely, and often used with gallus when referring to someone strutting about in new shoes and cheap suit with the confidence of James Bond. Can be complementary and derogatory humour depending on the type of gallusness on display.


nooQ to support Scotland’s first-ever “Homeless Hackathon”

nooQ is proud supporter of Scotland’s first-ever ‘Homeless Hackathon’ which will be held in Glasgow 13th-15th April 2018.

The ‘Homeless Hackathon‘ is designed to find practical ways of tackling the homeless situation in Scotland’s major cities and it aims to be a spark for innovative solutions including apps, websites and digital platforms.

The event, which will see more than 150 people from across the IT and digital community, creative industries and local and national government, including the charity sector come together to find practical solutions for organisations tackling homelessness in Scotland.

nooQ will be the main communication platform used during the event and will provide the perfect tool to ensure all attendees are kept up to date on all ongoing projects throughout the weekend.

The Hackathon is looking to attract anyone with ideas, time, skills and resources to dedicate to supporting homeless charities.

Tickets are available here.

Merry nooQmas

From all of us at nooQ we are wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

We have had a great 2017 but we are even more excited for what’s to come next year. Make sure you stay tuned for updates on all things nooQ as we’ve got several product news in the making, coming early 2018.

Even better, sign up to our newsletter and follow us on Twitter and Facebook for instant notifications on the latest developments.

Happy holidays and we’ll be in touch soon!

nooQmas 2017

Tackling Law’s Collaboration Challenge

Guest Blog: Sam Moore, Legal Technologist at Burnell Paul LLP

Our friend Sam Moore recently sat down with Grame to discuss the collaboration culture and the issues faced by the legal industry. Here’s what he had to say.

Law's Collaboration Challenge


I’ve had many job titles in my career to date – Solicitor, Commercial Manager, Project Manager, Solicitor again, and most recently Legal Technologist. In all the sectors I’ve enjoyed exposure to there has always been some degree of collaboration involved with my peers to address common issues and to tackle sector-wide challenges in a cohesive way. One sector however stands out for me as doing things a little differently – legal services. We as lawyers are trained from the get-go to be tight-lipped, even secretive in nature, and to hold our cards very close to the chest. This is entirely appropriate in the context of client confidentiality of course, and is also vital to the cut and thrust of dispute resolution and robust contract negotiation. However, in my experience, this ‘defensive’ stance into which we naturally slip can also potentially hold us back when it comes to innovation and knowledge sharing.

This tendency towards reticence can also be surprisingly common within legal teams as well, not just between competitors. The issue isn’t that, for example, the property lawyers don’t want to share their experiences with the dispute resolution lawyers, it’s more that neither necessarily thinks to ask (or perhaps they don’t realise that each has something the other might benefit from knowing). The fact is however that all teams within a firm most likely have something valuable to share with their colleagues, if only they had a convenient platform to do so (and ideally were encouraged or even incentivised to take part). This issue is not novel of course, and a cursory Google search for ‘legal collaboration tools’ yields plenty of results ranging from full blown project management packages to more specific legal tech products. I posed this question to one such product developer – Graeme Bodys, Founder and CEO of the award winning collaboration platform nooQ: can technology reboot our collaboration culture?

Graeme Bodys (nooQ) – “Given the amount of information being produced, and given that a vast proportion of our day is spent using technology, I think we need help processing that information and I think that technology has to help make our jobs easier. A McKinsey study found that 28% of our working day is spent using email. A further 33% is spent looking for answers, expertise and decisions. This leaves a mere 39% doing your actual job, and to me that is crazy! Some working days the only achievable outputs are that you have read your emails and attended some meetings. You are merely processing information. This needs to change. This problem is present in every modern office globally to some degree, but the legal profession is more acutely aware than other industries just how valuable time is, especially billable time, and that it cannot be wasted, reclaimed or spent doing trivial matters.

To address these challenges we built nooQ – to visualise what is important to you, and to use artificial intelligence to do the sorting, filtering and recommending so that you can find answers, expertise and decisions much faster. This allows projects to have a secure central repository which combines group conversations, ideas and documents into a shared knowledge space. We want to move away from locking people in meeting rooms for an hour trying to share ideas or documents, and instead move towards truly collaborating across offices at times which suit everyone and getting answers to complex issues in a significantly more efficient way. Firms like Burness Paull who are ahead of the curve can use new technology products like nooQ for idea generation and simple surveys, to gather employee feedback on the best ways to improve processes and optimal technology delivery.”

The Solution

Of course nooQ represents just one possible approach to tackling this issue, and it’s almost certainly not a ‘one size fits all’ challenge. That being said, it’s becoming clear that the burgeoning legal tech industry has identified collaboration platforms as an area ripe for innovation.

One of the most valuable lessons I’ve learned so far about legal technology is that the cleverest solution in the world is useless if the end users don’t have the right mind-set to adopt it. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it participate in your weekly sprint review meeting. Before any firm embarks on a technology project to tap the knowledge of their teams it must be well established that these teams understand the benefits to be had, and that everyone is ready and willing to participate. With the right tools and the right approach however, legal teams can reap the huge benefits of collaboration – and not a moment too soon. The legal sector is being challenged on every convention, every well worn path, and every long held view by clients who increasingly demand innovation from their trusted advisors. Unlocking the knowledge within your own teams is to me the most logical place to begin answering that challenge.


Connect with Sam on LinkedIn in to see more of his articles.

What is nooQ?

Our first video is finally here!

Well technically that isn’t quite true as a few videos have been produced in the past. However these are now old and out-of-date as we have evolved leaps and bounds since our last video production in 2013. (the old version can be found here).

That is why we’ve been working on an animation that simply and quickly explains what nooQ is and what our platform can do to improve communication and productivity in the current business climate.

After lots of tweaking and fine-tuning here’s our brand new video which explains it all.

Let us know what you think in the comments field below.


It’s back and we’re going for it!

EIE (Engage Invest Exploit) is back for its 10th year and its bigger and better than ever.

EIE is one of the largest technology investor showcase events around and features the best and most promising that Scotland has to offer across life sciences, ICT and energy sector companies.

We have been part of EIE since 2015 and just like the event itself nooQ have grown leaps and bounds in the last two years. So much so that we have been selected as one of only 12 companies to present a 6-minute pitch in front of an audience of 600+, including up to 160 investors and mentors.

Having been through the pitch and investor preparation process before Graeme has polished his ‘nooQ red’ shoes and is raring to go. Apart from explaining how nooQ can revolutionise the workplace, he will explain how our recent corporate partnership with Purdue University who are helping solve innovation challenges at high profile clients like NASA and Eli Lilly.

This is a taster of what they’ll hear:



We look forward to making new connections  as well as catching up with familiar faces during the two day event in Edinburgh, and wish all participating companies the very best of luck!



Purdue University

nooQ partners with prestigious American university


If you are following us on FacebookTwitter or Instagram you will already have seen our announcement about our Purdue University partnership. And, boy are we excited!

Missed opportunities, connecting the right people at the right time, no ownership, trust or accountability are everyday challenges presented to universities and corporates making it difficult to create steady revenue streams and new business opportunities.

There is a need for better ways to accelerate innovation and commercialise, to create a scalable, repeatable process which transforms the way a problem is solved.

This is what our new partners at Purdue Agile Strategy Lab has managed to achieve. The newly developed Strategic Doing strategy discipline is specifically designed for open, loosely connected networks. By following a set of simple rules, participants learn to design and guide complex collaborations quickly and move them toward measurable outcomes, and make adjustments along the way, as they learn what works.

Developed as a practical discipline to deal with complex, “wicked” problems, the discipline is reinforced by research findings from cognitive science, organizational learning, positive psychology, strategic management, social network analysis, and complexity leadership theory.

Using the Strategic Doing process the Purdue Agile Strategy Lab has cracked the code and created a repeatable process for innovation and complex collaborations.

Ed Morrison, Director Purdue Agile Strategy Lab states “We are very excited to be working with nooQ. We have been evaluating other platforms for years but nothing comes close to what we can do with nooQ. As a partnership we have very complementary skills. We have the opportunity to use nooQ Innovation platform with 50 other universities currently in our network and corporate partners who have used Strategic Doing to solve complex problems.

“This partnership also will allow universities to create revenue opportunities with commercial partners. For an ever moving landscape, it cracks the communication problem of keeping everyone informed. Most importantly, the nooQ platform has the intelligence to automatically visualise expertise. It enables participants to link and leverage assets to define new opportunities.  Staying on top of complex projects is a never ending challenge. Combining nooQ & Strategic Doing can make implementing complex strategic initiatives radically faster. From years and months (or never) to weeks and days.


Discovery Park at Purdue University

Discovery Park at Purdue University

nooQ will be a corporate partner and provide the open innovation platform which will give the university and their commercial partners a unique way of commercialising research and raise continual revenue streams for clients such as NASA, Lockheed Martin, and Eli Lilly.

Combining nooQ with Strategic Doing is a phenomenal opportunity where the end goal is to establish a global standard for innovation and problem solving. And to radically increase productivity by providing a platform which connects people, assets and opportunities automatically.

Graeme says ‘We want to become one of Scotland’s leading software companies with a large presence in the US and Europe. We want to take on the big guys at Google, IBM and Microsoft. People spend far too much time processing information, our award winning, innovative approach will allow companies and universities to create connections in opportunities to improve new products, processes and solve complex research challenges. Strategic Doing will do to innovation, what David Allen’s ‘Getting Things Done‘ did for the to-do list.

There are lots of innovation methods out there, but typically it gets very challenging to manage all the brainstorming activity once everyone has left the room. With Purdue, we can take this further. We are really excited by the potential of the Purdue partnership which can be replicated by any university or corporate innovation project. Our deal with Purdue is one big step in the right direction.”


500 reasons nooQ can make you more efficient

For those who haven’t come across Zapier yet, Zapier is a web automation app which automates all the monotonous tasks of your business life, saving you time by doing the same repetitive thing over and over and over again, by connecting all your favourite cloud apps with zero code.

So how does this affect you? It means you automatically can connect more than 500 SaaS applications into nooQ. Creating zaps into nooQ means someone else is doing the work for you, saving you time and money, allowing you to concentrate on the business challenges which needs your attention. We won’t go into all 500 reasons – that would keep you here for days, and be very detrimental to what we are here to do. So let’s just touch on a few reasons nooQ’s new Zapier integration can benefit you daily.

Tired of scrolling through lengthy Slack or Yammer feeds? By the click of a button Zapier lets you transfer messages from Slack or Yammer into your personal nooQ dashboard, and by using our volume controls you only see the topics you actually are interested in.

Tired of not being up to date on the latest business chat and discussions? Integrate new Hipchat messages into nooQ and quickly get an overview of what topics of conversation are trending within the organisation.

Tired of not being able to stay on top of project deadlines? Easy! Integrate existing Trello cards to ensure you stay on top of your most urgent communications or deadlines using nooQ’s visual interface.

Tired of not finding the files you need? Consider it a thing of the past by adding your documents, videos, photos from Google Drive into nooQ and ensure you never lose information again as all files and attachments within nooQ are saved in the same spot.

So go on! We’re confident you won’t look back once you’ve given it a try.

If you don’t already have a Zapier account, all you have to do is quickly set one up then add it to your nooQ by using this private link.  

Please get in touch if you have any questions.