30 Apr Taking tracking to the next level
We’ve become obsessed with tracking; tracking steps, tracking calories, tracking sleep. Tracking gives you an element of control over your health and watching the results improve can be a huge motivator to do better – whether that’s by cutting down on certain foods or making an effort to be more active. MediCity Nottingham based Medichecks’ blood testing service takes tracking to the next level. Their online blood testing service is the very first in the UK to offer home to lab testing.
Bella Marsden (Medichecks) chatting with Olivia Fletcher-Hogg (BioCity)
Earlier this month we met with Medichecks’ Marketing Manager, Bella Marsden, to find out about managing and tracking your health, with insider knowledge, bodybuilders and vegan doughnuts.
“It’s funny that I’m working for this company – I actually don’t like blood! But since I had my first health check I’m completely addicted and want to know more.” Bella’s enthusiasm is clear and shows she is completely on board with the company’s mission to empower people to take control of their own health. “Personally, I’m really interested in health and wellbeing, so to work for a company where I can receive a detailed analyse of what’s happening in my own body, is really exciting, it’s such a good feeling knowing that with little tweaks to your lifestyle you can really improve your health.”
Medichecks offer over 1000 tests; from testing Vitamin D to full health screens. “We have a big Vitamin D deficiency issue in UK, especially in winter.” Their customers can do the tests at home and get access to their results in their own personal dashboard designed for tracking and monitoring their markers over time. One of the Medichecks doctor’s will also comment on the results to ensure the customer gets a detailed explanation of what all the markers mean.
“The service is used for all sorts of reasons – by healthy people, by those who have restricted diets such as gluten intolerances, vegan or veggie, (I’m vegan, so it’s been really useful to check I’m getting all the necessary vitamins and minerals), all the way through to those who need to track their health conditions. It’s becoming really popular with those who are training, especially endurance athletes like long-distance runners. The body is so interesting and there is something for everyone!”
Medichecks sample collection postal kit
How has Medichecks evolved?
“The company was formed in 2002 – then it was tiny. For the first few years the company was an ‘online library of blood testing’. In the past 2 to 3 years the company has grown rapidly, mainly because we’ve taken a medical service and tailored it to become a consumer product. This time last year there were 16 of us – now there’s almost 40! We’re already outgrowing our offices, it’s such fast paced growth – it’s a really exciting time for us.”
“At our Christmas party in 2015 we all sat around one table – but now we need to hire a whole room! It’s such a nice atmosphere though and new people bring such energy and buzz to what we’re doing. The concept of tracking your health through blood testing is still really new for people, even though it’s something we’ve been doing for quite a long time.”
“We moved to MediCity from Newark when we were in search of larger offices. Relocating here has been great – it’s a bigger city so it’s great for recruiting, especially with there being two universities so close. There’s so much more for the team to do. Even just in MediCity itself, it’s a great place to be as were surrounded by lots of other growing tech and health brands, and of course we’re on the site of Boots! When I first saw the building, I was really surprised – I thought, ‘Wow it really is a Boots factory’. I love the interior, it has such a cool art-deco style.”
What’s your ‘day to day’ job like?
“Because we’re a fast-growing company the marketing team works really collaboratively and there’s lots of overlap with our roles. I’m specifically in charge of social media and email marketing, however, I get involved in so many different aspects – in bigger organisations there tends to be more red tape, whereas at Medichecks you just have to get stuck in.”
“I get to go to a lot of expos, specifically aimed at health and fitness – including weight lifting and body building – these guys are the original biohackers! They track and monitor everything. Talking to these people was quite new for us, and you wouldn’t normally find a blood testing company at a fitness expo, but we had such an engaged crowd.”
Medichecks office based at MediCity, Nottingham
What’s the culture like?
“Very fun, dynamic, collaborative. There’s a great atmosphere – we all genuinely get along. Everyone gets the chance to update the team on what they’re up to and any exciting projects they’re working on. Everyone’s opinion is important, so we get the chance to share our views.”
“As a team we’re all interested in maintaining a healthy lifestyle; and it shows in the culture – we get regular fruit deliveries, have a smoothie fridge, there’s a group of us that go running and do HiiT workouts at lunch – there’s a couple of people in our team that used to be PTs so we take full advantage of them! I guess we just want everyone to be happy at work– and health is a big factor in that. I love the yoga class here at MediCity on a Monday!
What do you get up to in Nottingham in your spare time?
I moved to Notts exactly a year ago! Originally, I’m from London, but I love the opportunity to travel and get to know other cites – I’ll take any opportunity to live somewhere new! I love Nottingham – it still ‘feels’ like a city but I can walk everywhere. I live in the City Centre, so as I step out of my front door there are shops, bars, restaurants and theatres, literally, on my doorstop. Did you know ‘Do-notts’ (a Doughnut company originated from Nottingham) have vegan doughnuts?! It’s also great to be in the centre of everything whilst still being able to hop on the tram to the river in the summer, which is a lovely escape and has such a different atmosphere.”
“David our Graphic Designer is really in to amateur dramatic theatre. We recently had a team dinner before going to watch his play followed by drinks with the cast afterwards! He is also our star baker! Did you see our Medichecks ginger bread house? (Referring to the BioCity Christmas competition – take a look here) He makes me vegan treats from left over office fruit!”
What has been your biggest achievement at Medichecks?
“Managing the events last year – I’ve never done anything like it, so I really didn’t know what to expect. It was very nerve-racking, but the satisfaction of seeing everything come together and looking amazing was incredible. I was out of my comfort zone but it totally paid off – I was very proud. “