Employee Communications and Engagement 2 0 Case Studies


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Collection of case studies on employee communications applied in a social media context. Whether your organization is involved in social media or not, your employees most certainly are. Social media has radically and permanently changed your employees’ expectations of internal communication, connection and collaboration. Employee Engagement 2.0 helps you adapt to this new communication landscape, finding new ways of connecting with employees to help drive business results.

Connect with Caroline Kealey at Ingenium Communications:

WEBSITE: http://www.ingeniumcommunications.com
TWITTER: @CarolineKealey
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  • The most popular section on the intranet in terms of click throughs and contributions by staff has been Spot the Stars. This is a forum where employees submit photos and stories about celebrity spottings in their stores. They’ve also had a few promotions where celebrities come and be a barista for a day in support of a local charity. Here you see a campaign that is built around the power of social media to foster user-generated content – to get staff participating in a very immediate, highly visual and emotionally relevant activity that’s fun. Now, I appreciate that we are not baristas – but there’s a kernel here that is transferable … might be interesting to ask the question how your organization can use this structural approach to internal communications – that is, focused on user generated content, immediacy and fun, to advantage. Starbucks has made a corporate decision to phase out print information to staff based on the cost effectiveness of their digital channel, its appeal to a young workforce, and most importantly, the fact that the digital tools enable unparalleled opportunities in terms of measurement of ROI.It’s an interesting case study – I don’t know what Starbucks spends on internal communications, though I’d love to know the total budget or the relative investment to revenues. What I do know is that these are smart people making a lot of money, so the case study points to a very strong business case for internal communications in terms of brand positioning and sales. Put it this way – Starbucks could not possibly have the success it currently enjoys without engaging with staff and ensuring that their staff are equipped to contribute to the bottom line.
  • Closer to home, the Government of Canada’s federal youth network is a good example of an employee communications and engagement 2.0 program that has been able to take root, even within the very risk-averse federal environment.They’ve created a youtube channel, and an app to try to build community among young federal employees to help with retention and career development. The campaign has all the hallmarks of employee engagement 2.0 – story telling, making content interactive, visual, focusing on an emotional connection and building community. Sure, it may not be as expansive as Kempinski or as star studded as the Starbucks case, but it does illustrate, I think that the concept of employee communication and engagement 2.0 can scale to a variety of environments, even some that may be highly structured and traditional.
  • The federal government has also pushed some boundaries in social media use to connect with employee through the Blueprint 2020 initiative which is somewhat unusual in its use of external sites like Twitter and YouTube to try to help foster employee engagement. I think it’s a smart move because the old adage that you want to go where your audiences are certainly holds true, and public servants, along with most other Canadians today are living online.
  • A terrific example of another Ottawa-based organization that is really breaking ground in compelling employee communication and engagement 2.0 is EDC.In the spirit of full disclosure, EDC is a client which is why I am familiar with their case in particular – however, the campaign they’ve graciously agreed to have me share with you is an initiative that was led by staff working with a supplier out of Toronto, so while I was extremely impressed with the example, we had nothing to do with it! I just had the pleasure of watching it from the sidelines.EDC has been recognized with a number of IABC awards for excellence in internal communications for its intranet, its employee newsletter and its annual employee conference.Last year, I attended their conference which absolutely blew my socks off. It brought together over 1,300 employees from across Canada and from their 16 global offices. Again, it’s a great example of taking inspiration from a social approach to communication and applying it to non-social media tactics. The conference was based on a Homecoming theme and so they had their executives wearing University garb to promote “EDC U”. Here you see their former CEO Steve Poloz who wore his Queen’s leather jacket to address the staff (I think now that he’s the governor of the bank of Canada they make him wear a navy suit!)
  • A simple but very effective activity that was included in the Conference was a name tag game – again, a human version of the kind of connections that can be made serendipitously online, and a form of using gamification as part of a live event. So, in the design of the event, they are promoting fun, connection and relationship building.
  • EDC has managed to really integrate its face to face and online communication to employees, to keep that sense of connection and story telling running coherently across channels. This is a screen shot of the post-Conference site on Livewire, their intranet platform where staff could continue their engagement and learning experience from the conference, share stories and connect with new colleagues.Really, a beautiful example of a really integrated approach to employee communication and engagement 2.0. They also have lots of metrics to back up their success, including an over 90% positive rating from participants, achieving targets related to participation and involvement of staff on stage, as well as retention of key messages about the “EDC Way” which is their strategic values statement.
  • Employee Communications and Engagement 2 0 Case Studies

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    17. 17. TOP TRENDS IN EMPLOYEE COMMUNICATIONS & ENGAGEMENT 2.0 Story-telling and content strategy Focus on user-generated content BYOD policy (Bring Your Own Device) Connecting employee communications to sales & business outcomes Social media and gamification used for training 17
    18. 18. STRATEGIES FOR DEALING WITH RESISTANCE 1. Meet audiences where they are 2. Be prepared 3. Manage expectations 4. Measure – learn – refine 5. Celebrate successes 18
    19. 19. WWW.RESULTSMAP.COM @carolinekealey caroline@resultsmap.com