How our audio dashboard helps us celebrate as a Team

The Boords team works out of the Animade studio in east London. With so many projects going on within Animade, one of our challenges is to make sure we communicate what we're up to on Boords to the rest of the team. One of the best ways we've found to do this is via a web-based dashboard on a smart TV in the middle of the studio.

Having a central hub of information that people can glance at if they're wandering past really helps create a sense of community as well as keeping people up-to-date with what's going on. The dashboard pulls in data from a few sources including Intercom, Google Analytics, Stripe, Mailchimp and others, and picks out key stats which show how we're doing. It's basically a filter. All these services generate a huge amount of data, so it's incredibly useful to have a distilled, relevant version always visible.

You might be thinking that it sounds like a lot of other web-based dashboards, and you'd be right. Where it differs is it's also rigged up to play audio. Currently, it's hooked up to play sounds for two key events.

New sign-ups

A new user signing up is cause for celebration, and we're fortunate in that this happens fairly regularly. So that things don't get tedious, we picked a short sound play when this happens; namely the Super Mario World 1-up sound.

This is a really nice ambient way of getting a sense of how many new users are coming to the app. It has also turned out to be a great way to know when someone is talking about us online. If there's lots of 1-up sounds playing, our ears are probably burning.


When someone upgrades to a paid account, we wanted something with some pizzazz, so we went for the full Super Mario World 'Course Clear' music.

As well as the audio sugar-rush of Koji Kondo's composition, there's a full-screen takeover with the user's name showing along with it. So if you want your name up in lights with a Super Mario World backing track, now you know what you need to do. It's a mini-carnival, every time.

The dashboard is one of a few ways we keep track of what's happening on Boords. We spend a significant amount of time in Intercom & Baremetrics apps, and we also use Slack as a Notification centre in much the same way as the guys and gals over at Cushion do.

In the weeks since we've started using the dashboard it's amazing how much of a meeting point it has become. It's the first thing we turn on in the morning, where we have our daily Boords stand-up, and the last thing to go off at night. People regularly gather round it to look at the stats or see who the new sign-ups are.

Having an open way of celebrating our wins together has been fantastic for camaraderie and visibility as we're growing. We wouldn't be without it.