NHS Inc.

Skateboard brand rolls out new process for global brand compliance.

Man with a NHS skateboard in hand admiring the sunset

NHS Inc. is the oldest skateboard company in the world. Its brands embody a lifestyle. It has been turning out innovative, recognizable sports equipment brands for almost 50 years. NHS owns nearly a dozen brands, including Santa Cruz Skateboards, Independent Truck Company, Creature Skateboards, Bronson Speed Co., and OJ Wheels.

It works with a wide variety of international licensing partners to create and distribute its products and designs all over the world.

Instead of using traditional email, Ziflow’s web-based platform has made it really easy for us to communicate clearly with licensees in different countries. And it’s allowed us to be fully transparent on what we want communicated, globally, about our company.

Trill Santin, Licensing Coordinator


man on a skateboard skating above skatepark by the sunset


Juggling brand compliance with campaign deadlines

NHS Inc. has multiple brands, many products, and numerous licensing partners around the world.

The company must maintain brand compliance and consistency in an effective and efficient way across its global workforce. If a licensing partner wants to publish a social media campaign in a matter of days, NHS’ Licensing, Branding, Marketing, and Apparel teams need to review and approve the creative assets to ensure brand compliance before the partner could run with them.

Having a consistent message that is being seen all over the world is very important to us. We have so many brands and only so many hours in the day. Making sure that everything gets seen by everyone while staying on that deadline is one of our bigger challenges.

Trill Santin, Licensing Coordinator

Previously, NHS’ brand review process was over-complicated and tedious. It involved receiving creative assets by email, passing around physical print-outs of the creative assets to gather comments, entering feedback into an Excel spreadsheet, and emailing the spreadsheets internally and externally for review and compliance. This process resulted in multiple versions of brand assets, which opened up the door to errors.

With many team members working remotely or in different countries, using email to track the assets from person to person was also very difficult and didn’t allow for visual collaboration. Gathering and clarifying comments was time-consuming. It was easy to lose track of feedback and, at times, even the assets themselves.

Not only did all of these issues make hitting deadlines a challenge, it also jeopardized brand compliance and impacted partner relationships.

NHS skateboard factory indoors with employees working on boards asembly


Central platform allows for timely feedback and approvals

NHS needed a single creative collaboration platform to simplify its review and approval process, as well as make it easier to maintain brand compliance. And with licensing partners and team members working in multiple languages around the world, it wanted a platform that required very little onboarding and training.

NHS was won over by Ziflow’s intuitive interface. The ease of use and focus on collaborative, creative feedback was the perfect fit for the company. It uses Ziflow for:

  • Review and approval of all new product creative. Internally, the NHS creative department uses Ziflow for the review and approval of all new product creative. This enables the entire creative team to add comments and feedback throughout the design process.
  • Reduced number of versions. Feedback for all of NHS’ creative assets is now in one place. The number of versions going back and forth has greatly decreased, leaving the creative team with more time to focus on the job at hand.
  • Automatic workflows and notifications. The platform’s workflows automatically notify NHS’ licensing department and apparel team of licensee uploads and route content to the appropriate creative directors, brand manager, and marketing director for timely feedback and approvals. Automatic notifications are especially helpful for remote employees.
  • A centralized feedback hub. In addition to streamlining internal reviews, Ziflow improved the licensing process— and the creative relationship—with NHS’ international licensing partners. Creating a centralized feedback hub across language barriers and time zones has allowed NHS and its partners to upload their creative assets for approval at any time of the day.

NHS Skateboarding company proof review in Ziflow - lifestyle-shot and woman with a laptop


Creative hub streamlines brand compliance and enhances partner relationships

Thanks to Ziflow, NHS was able to:

  • Create a central hub for creative and licensing approval.
  • Decrease the number of versions.
  • Reduce project delivery time.
  • Empower a remote workforce to approve product and marketing content.
  • Standardize procedures globally, even across language barriers.
  • Control branding compliance at a detailed level.
  • Onboard licensees quickly and easily.
  • Accurately communicate brand guidelines with side-by-side version comparison.

By automatically managing versions and enabling everyone to collaborate on the same central asset, the creative team and licensing partners can provide feedback without confusion or fear of miscommunication.

“Ziflow has made all of our lives a lot easier, and it’s definitely helped us streamline our review process,” says Trill, “We love it.”

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