Centralizing Communications: Thou Shall Not Have Broadcast Email

Posted by Terri McKinnon on Jul 3, 2018 1:09:28 PM

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Financial services organization VicSuper needed an internal communications strategy that was as dynamic and efficient as their 260 person team.

Led by the Learning & Organizational Development team, the company embarked on delivering a new company intranet with GreenOrbit (formerly Intranet DASHBOARD). The goal: To push information and knowledge away from email and into an open, centralized platform.

The organization’s preference for email communications was purely out of habit - as that’s the way it had been for so long. The company-wide reliance on email was taking its toll, making it time consuming and inefficient for working collaboratively. The only way to communicate company news was via an ‘all staff’ email, which failed to engage users and was easily lost amongst other content. They were suffering from serious email overkill.

When disparate systems kill the message

The restrictions email placed on information sharing were obvious to the team. A document would be created and then converted to PDF for emailing. It was too difficult to upload documents to the old intranet, and no one would share it on Yammer as they were two disparate environments. This disconnect fuelled the team’s case for a new intranet, and was identified as a key business challenge.

The vision for the new intranet was that it would be the place to access information, communicate, and collaborate. They were eager to move these activities away from email, and into a central platform where it would actually be read, understood, and engaged with.

It was important to have a system that could facilitate multi-dimensional communications, pushing different messages to audiences in different ways. Pushing collaboration away from email and into iD meant, having a tool that allows several conversations concurrently through news posts, forums, pages and activity feeds – getting messages out at the right time to the right people.

After relying on email for so many years, the team knew it was difficult for people to change their habits - even if they wanted to. Some of the strategies used by VicSuper to drive user adoption included pushing the intranet to employees as the browser home page and committing to “No more blast emails”. In turn, they have found, people have taken to social functionality like ducks to water.

The centralized model

From the outset, the benefits of centralized communications began to unfold. The team had been rolling out a learning program called Activate - about activating their brand. Traditionally, they would have let the business know through an ‘all staff’ email - the same message, at the same time, with the same instructions.

The issue with this was that the course meant different things to different departments, and had different calls to action. Through their new company intranet, this information could be targeted to different groups in different ways. Users could then ask questions, offer advice, and share. Information immediately became more meaningful, impactful, and known. It was no longer buried away in people’s inboxes.

You can learn more about VicSuper’s intranet through their full case study.

To find out more about how GreenOrbit can get work going in your organization - check out the GreenOrbit Feature Checklist:

 

Feature Checklist

 

 

Topics: company intranet, communication tools, Internal Communications, new intranet, Social Intranet

10 Ways to Engage a Remote Workforce

Posted by Annabelle Willis on Mar 8, 2018 6:15:29 PM

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In the recent Gallup State of the American Workplace Report it found that from 2012 to 2016, the number of employed Americans working remotely –at least some of the time- grew from 39% to 43%. This number is set to continue to rise, and employees already working remotely will spend more time doing so.

The appeal of flexible work is fairly obvious, particularly for those battling long commutes, raising a family, or managing a chronic illness. Your team might work on the ground or be travelling regularly. Heck, maybe you just feel that you could produce a higher standard of work today while you wear your pyjamas on the couch. The reasons for seeking remote work are varied, and research supports that the outcomes can be positive for both employees and employers. In fact, Boston College research reports that 64% of employees would choose a lower paying job if they could work away from the office just one day a week.

So, not only could offering remote work options increase the productivity and performance of your team, but it could help attract exceptional talent to come and work for you in the first place. Sounds like something worth considering, right?

Before you go ahead and cancel the lease on your office building, you’re obviously going to need the right digital tools in place to support your remote team. One of the most critical will be your company intranet, not only in its functionality but how you leverage it to engage employees. For all of remote working’s benefits, keeping staff engaged, connected and collaborative is difficult without physical interaction. Fortunately, your intranet is where you can bridge the gap.

Here’s how:

1) Detailed, meaningful User Profiles

User Profiles can do so much more than placing a face to a name. Staff need not share their life stories, but think about the important stuff- areas of expertise, qualifications, strengths and the like. Without meeting, a remote worker should be able to view a User Profile and understand what that person does, and what they could bring to a project.

2) A Staff Directory that encourages connections

Now that your User Profiles actually mean something, you’ll need a killer staff directory to make them findable. With GreenOrbit, by applying metadata to your profile, this information then becomes searchable across the intranet. For example, you could simply search the word ‘French’ to find a French speaker to interpret something for you. This makes it easy for remote workers to find topic experts and initiate collaboration, no matter where they might be located.

3) Storytelling

The mobile team at RSPCA do a fantastic job at this; regularly posting articles to their intranet sharing stories and photos of their animal rescues. In turn, they are keeping remote staff in the loop, while reinforcing and celebrating their team culture. Great job guys!

4) Digital collaboration

Distance shouldn’t hinder employee collaboration. Iwan Westfa, IT Manager at global consulting firm Ecorys, sums up the benefits (and ease) of collaborating via the intranet perfectly:

Someone in the UK posted to a #Channel that their client needed to conduct an interview with a particular type of expert. Up until then, they could not find anyone and the project was in jeopardy. Once it was posted to #Channels, an expert in the Netherlands popped up by commenting on the post. So the reporters came to the Netherlands to carry out the interview. Normally we would have just lost the opportunity, but we made a profit.”

Thanks, Iwan.

5) Private Groups

Business-wide collaboration is great, but remote workers also need to collaborate within their team. Functionality such as Private Groups provides a place for teams to communicate, file-share and come together- even when they’re apart.

6) Digitize your forms

If your forms and processes are paper-based, remote workers are going to have a rough time completing them. They’ll either have to navigate a scanner or send it to you in the post, both of which are slow and completely infuriating. Instead, comprehensive online forms will allow them to submit forms quickly, easily and accurately.

7) Recognising good work

You might be unable to give your remote co-workers a physical high-five, but social intranet tools can provide the digital equivalent. Using a tool such as GreenOrbit #Channels, you can acknowledge the contributions of remote workers for your entire organization to see. At GreenOrbit, we share #StaffShoutouts internally to celebrate exceptional work. Through likes and comments, the ‘applause’ can be heard wherever we are.

8) Comprehensive online learning

A remote or mobile worker should experience the same training and education as their office-based colleagues. Providing comprehensive training modules with workflow through your intranet means staff can become experts in a new program, sales strategy, or safety process wherever they may be located.

9) Videos

Video conferencing is as close as dispersed teams can get to chatting face-to-face. When conferencing isn’t possible, record important presentations or events and store them on your intranet to allow remote employees to be a fly-on-the-wall.

10) Find opportunities

Within our own team at GreenOrbit, we have a number of remote workers whose lifeline is the intranet. Essentially, it’s where they ‘go to work’ and can interact with colleagues on a professional and personal level.

One of our remote employees is a regular contributor to our #Photography channel, sharing his work as a moonlight events photographer. From this, we instantly knew he would be the perfect person to work with our marketing team and photograph the SuperFoiler Grand Prix. He had the opportunity to travel around the country pursuing his passion, while the marketing team had access to exceptional event photos - a fantastic outcome for both parties.

As the number of remote workers grows, so too do the expectations of the remote work experience. By implementing these tips and leveraging your intranet as a digital workplace, you’ll be able to attract and retain the best remote employees for your business.

Want to know more about how your intranet can get work going? Check out our eBook:

3 Ways your Intranet can be a Launchpad for success

Topics: Case Studies, clients, Collaboration, digital workplace, employee engagement, HOW TO, mobile intranet, mobile workforce, Social Intranet

Digital Transformation for Iconic Retailer: Lowes

Posted by Connie Pandos on Jun 14, 2017 3:03:30 PM

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I want to share with you a story of pure Digital Transformation. This retail business recently embarked upon digitizing their operations across the board. This is one of the most rewarding projects I have been privy to be involved with, a story of immense satisfaction for intranet lovers.

Lowes is an established, successful and iconic retail business.

Theirs is a story of pure and simple digital transformation.

Lowes acknowledged that the needs of staff and customers have changed – the world has become digital and it was time for this successful retailer to do the same as they approach their 120thbirthday.

Lowes boast a large and diverse retail workforce which ranges from seasonal casual teenage sales staff, to long serving directors, some having worked there for over 50 years!  Staff retention is not an issue – staff do not leave Lowes.

A complete digital transformation has been possible because they have given all their 2000 employees access to the intranet by accessing the intranet using iPads across their 200 stores.

Lowes has changed the way they do things including:

  • Real-time Communication

  • Automated HR Processes

  • Online Training

  • Intranet accessible to ALL staff via iPads

Would you like to learn more about Digital Transformation at Lowes?

Lowes Case Study

Lowes Case Study

 

Topics: automated HR processes, clients, CUSTOMERS, digital transformation, digital workplace, Future Intranet, intranet dashboard, mobile workforce, Online Training, Portal, real time communication, Retail Intranet, Social Intranet

How Can Social Intranets Increase Your Sales

Posted by Connie Pandos on Feb 27, 2017 5:15:36 PM

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Sales people spend their days on the front line, presenting your products to prospective customers and hearing what they have to say. They hear it all, the good, the bad and the ugly.

What salespeople hear is what you want to know about – immediately! This feedback can make a huge difference to your business and the faster you can get this information the faster you and others in your business can act upon it.

Imagine a sales person being able to post feedback via their mobile device and immediately share it with everyone in your business!

#Channels are the exciting functionality in GreenOrbit that allows you to do this.

 

Topics: #channels, digital workplace, HOW TO, intranet, intranet dashboard, INTRANET INSIGHT, roi, sales, Social Intranet

Transforming Workforce Experience

Posted by Connie Pandos on Aug 26, 2016 4:11:32 PM

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The wellbeing of a business is determined by the wellbeing of its staff. In order to make a positive profit, your team need to feel positive about their work. Dale Carnegie Training found that “companies with engaged employees outperform those without by up to 202%.” Sounds like something worth addressing, right?

However, changing the way your team feels about work requires more than table tennis or soft drinks in the fridge. It’s about transforming the entire workforce experience.

What is workforce experience and why is it important?

Employee experience is the way employees feel at and about their work; the wellbeing and the health and cooperation of the team as a whole is workforce experience. A positive workforce experience is when you have engaged staff with an emotional commitment to tasks and achieving targets, and consequently the foundation for smarter, faster, better business.

Fortunately, it’s easy to nurture and transform many facets of employee & workforce experience through your intranet:

Mobile Intranet

Mobile intranet access is now an absolute game changer in managing employee experience. Being able to access work from a client meeting, airport lounge or home, means employees are able to do work when they need to, or feel most inspired, mobility is something that employees categorically seek and expect as part of their workplace experience.

Boston College research reports that “64% of employees would choose a lower paying job if they could work away from the office just 1 day a week.”

Positive Team Culture

Deloitte found that Enterprise Social Networks generate more than just chit-chat, stating “organizations that rolled out social media tools found a 20% increase in employee satisfaction.” Enterprise Social Networks, encourage dialogue among team members and this leads to a more open communication and a happier team. Social platforms foster these social connections and in doing so build meaningful relationships and positive team culture.

Admin and eForms

Every employee wishes that annoying paper based forms are a thing of the past.  Employees want to be able to do all their administration tasks via an intranet – a central digital workplace – where less spent trawling through files, and folders and documents, and more time is spent accomplishing targets. In addition to this, the cost savings on paper, printing, and time will even make management smile.

Innovation

Employees may feel that they can make a real, tangible difference to their workplace but they may not have a voice or a vehicle for sharing their voice. A social intranet is a space for staff of all levels to contribute their ideas and visions. Your team will grow in confidence and feel that their input is valued. They might even come up with your next big idea!

Recognition

It’s important that staff know their efforts are appreciated. Team members on all levels need to feel as though they’re a part of the bigger picture. An intranet allows for recognition processes to celebrate and encourage staff achievements. Not only will a pat on the back give employees that warm fuzzy feeling, it gives others something to strive for.

So even though table tennis and pool tables at work could be fun… their ability to engage, innovate, and nurture your workforce is questionable.

Are you smiling yet?

Would you like your team to smile more whilst at work?

If you want to make real changes to the way your team feels about work, then we'd love to show you how GreenOrbit can help.

 

Topics: dashboard, digital workplace, employee engagement, enterprise social network, innovation, INTRANET INSIGHT, mobile intranet, Social Intranet, team culture, wellbeing

How FOX SPORTS Centralized Communication

Posted by Connie Pandos on Feb 16, 2016 3:47:08 PM

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A long, long time ago, 25 years ago actually… I was introduced to the idea of information superhighways and that they would give me the power to demand TV, banking and business.

Today this is real.

I demand and conduct all sorts of digital transactions at any hour of the day. I watch recorded TV and movies anytime I want; I transfer money at midnight;  I renew my car insurance on my lunch break; I order my grocery shopping on Sunday afternoons whilst I watch my kids play.

This is all possible because the teams behind these services operate around the clock.

When a business operates 24 hours a day, communication failures can easily occur. The telephone support tech that works 10.00pm-6.00am should share the same work experience as the marketing exec who works 8.00am-5.00pm. These teams require a central environment to communicate, collaborate, and knowledge-share. They need an intranet.

FOX SPORTS; leading broadcaster of 24 hour sports content, faced these very challenges. It has a team of over 1,000 staff (500 shift-workers) that operate 24 hours a day to deliver over 14,500 hours of premier live sport each year.

We recently had the privilege to work with FOX SPORTS’ and deliver a digital place of work and an online community that keeps everyone enjoying the same access to information and communication. FOX SPORTS’ intranet has become the “one-stop-shop” for the business. Every team member has access to the information and people they need at any time of the day!

Read more about FOX SPORTS in our Customer Stories

 

Topics: 24 hour business, clients, communication, customer story, CUSTOMERS, digital workplace, fox sports, intranet, intranet dashboard, mobile workforce, Social Intranet

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