Vicky Stevens | Make Hay Ethical E-media & Green Hosting

Member spotlight


Since it was established 10 years ago, The Ingenuity Network has grown into a thriving community of over 1800 individuals. Here, we feature examples of how some of those individuals have benefited from working with the University of Nottingham.

This month our featured member is Vicky Stevens, Director and co-founder of Make Hay Ethical E-media & Green Hosting

Founded in 2004 with colleague Jez Swinscoe, Make Hay designs, builds and hosts websites for ethical businesses, organisations and charities. Motivated by working on positive projects, the company won’t build websites for organisations that exploit people, animals or the natural world. “We’re just not interested in making money that way.” said Director and co-founder, Vicky Stevens.

It’s been reported that the running of data centres and cloud computing by fossil fuels is the largest global contributor to carbon emissions, second only to the aviation industry. Part of Make Hay’s unique offering, is that the company’s web hosting service is powered by renewable energy from UK wind farms which means clients’ websites are kind to the environment. There’s also flexibility in what they offer, as customers can use the company’s web hosting independently or in conjunction with its web design services. As well as selling web and hosting services to responsible and positive businesses, it uses a renewable electricity provider to power its office base and works with suppliers with positive eco credentials. It also uses high quality, energy efficient computer equipment and recycles paper, equipment and e-waste wherever possible. Because of its ethical stance, Make Hay has attracted clients from around the world who are involved in all kinds of amazing work, from conservation and education to ethical fashion and technology, and all things in between.

“I can’t remember the exact date, but it was several years ago when I first attended a networking event at the Sir Colin Campbell Building at the University.” said Vicky. “Networking is extremely valuable to us as a business. Every time I’ve attended an event I’ve met new people from organisations who are doing all kinds of interesting things. It’s opened us up to learning about other industries and given us the potential to work with clients from many different fields while helping us to spread the word about our ethical web design philosophy.

“The seminars hosted by the Ingenuity Network certainly encourage creative and new ways of thinking. I would definitely say the talks aren’t about run-of-the mill business topics. So often, I come away with a new perspective on something I already do in my business, which can be anything from marketing to customer care. Being breakfast events, when a lot of your time is already taken up, this is a great start to a day. My advice: join up! It’s as simple as that. It’s not often that you can access a free resource like this to help you develop your business. In fact I’m already booked for another event in the spring.”

You can catch up with Vicky at the April Ingenuity breakfast event The Problem of the Functional Self: Creating Meaning at Work which takes place on 24 April. Our full programme of business networking events for 2018 is available on our Ingenuity website.