Angel gets busy ‘Building It’

Every month, the staff at Angel Solutions take part in an Innovation Day where we lay aside our usual work and take some time out to create or learn something new. This month’s Innovation Day had a Build-It theme.

Take a look at what Team Angel got up to:

The Coin Collector

One of our teams decided to build a stylish interactive charity box for our office. They developed a random selection design, using a combination of wood, plastic and cardboard, to make coins bounce around and randomly spin into one of three charity collection stacks.

Will Veevers – from Angel’s Support Team – said: “We added the random element to make it more fun, but there is an extra coin slot at the back of the machine if you want your money to go to a specific charity. It’s a bit like a coin machine game, but with no losers! Every little bit of donated money will go to charity.”

The collection box isn’t quite finished yet (the team will keep working on it over the coming weeks), but the photos give a good idea of where it’s heading!

Angel Solutions already supports a number of charities and is likely to choose from these as recipients of the charity box donations. However, if you’d like to talk to us about supporting a different charity in some way, please contact

Painting balls…

Our interns also got their hands dirty — literally. There was paint, string, footballs and ping-pong balls everywhere! Nobody knew quite what was going on until the finished project was revealed… Can you tell what it is?

Do you know what it is yet?

Okay we’ll tell you. It’s a solar system mobile to go in our new Rocket Launch office!

Our interns wanted to make our new Outer-Space-themed offices feel ‘out of this world’, so set about creating a 3D solar system. In true Apollo 13 style, the interns used materials already available to them, including a ball from the Circus Office’s ball pit, donated ping-pong balls and a whole range of Christmas baubles (from Rob’s house). We think it looks great!

Pretty Data presentations

This innovation day wasn’t completely dominated by DIY-ers though. Things got competitive between three different staff teams who all took on data visualization challenges!

Armed with D3.js graph packages, the three groups went head-to-head in attempting to find new and creative ways to display large amounts of complex data.

Here’s what Dave – Angel’s senior designer – came up with to show who’s using our products:

Some interesting correlations were found by another data team as they looked at a variety of ways to track and present complicated pupil attainment data and projections. They found new trends and were able to demonstrate areas of need within specific groups of schools.

Meanwhile, a third data visualisation team developed some new interactive platforms to present and drill down deeper into school performance data.

What’s next?

Innovation is a core value of Angel Solutions. No matter how busy we get, we always want to make room to develop new and better products to serve the education industry. Projects like Watchsted have been born out of simple Innovation day ideas and we want to keep doing that.

So, who knows, these recent experiments with data visualisation could eventually grow into new additions for the Angel Solutions product portfolio. Watch this space!

Categories: Angel, Innovation

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