U004 outstanding initiative in emerging media technologies
Since its unveiling in July 2011, Norfolk Naval Shipyard’s (NNSY) digital signage has
distinguished itself as not only the newest communication tool for the shipyard workforce, but
also one of the most critical in providing timely, relevant and dynamic information. Digital
signage content is ―freshness dated‖ and updated several times each week, with an optimal
balance of the informative and the entertaining, ranging from safety tips, to project team updates,
to leadership quotes, and running the gamut to fun segments such as spotlighting shipyard
employees and NNSY history quizzes.
Since its inception, more than 50 digital screens have been installed and activated in locations of
high visibility such as break rooms, breezeways, the shipyard’s Subway restaurant and project
team meeting rooms.
The widespread use of digital signage has allowed the NNSY public affairs office to reduce
printing cost by more than 20 percent.
In 2013, NNSY’s public affairs office initiated customized playlists for certain monitors. These
playlists contained exclusive content including metrics, safety updates and goals specific to their
respective ship maintenance projects including USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77), USS Newport
News (SSN 750), USS Maryland (SSBN 738) and USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69).
In 2013, Digital Signage was also developed into a communication tool during emergencies such
as active shooters, destructive weather and emergency sheltering. Leadership now has a quick an
efficient means to communicate vital information to a workforce of nearly 10,000 employees –
the majority of whom do not have access to a computer.
As the leader in implementing digital signage across the nation’s four public shipyards, NNSY
has set a standard for the enterprise with over 50 pieces of content, known as ―spots‖, being
created weekly, with many of those—such as the ―Around the Shipyards‖ spot—being ideal for
displaying at all shipyards. NNSY proved instrumental in digital signage’s successful start-up at
Portsmouth and Puget Sound Naval Shipyards.
The journey to implementing and sustaining digital signage has benefited by strong working
relationships between NNSY’s PAO, IT Department, shipyard leadership, and the digital signage
With the new restraints on printing costs in these fiscally challenging times, digital signage is
becoming only more important in ensuring printing restrictions will not compromise the
workforce receiving critical information.