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Merlin Yammer Case Study

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  • 1. Social Networking for a Small Company Feel,but Big Company ReachMerlin Information Systems provides information technology services, includingservice-desk and infrastructure support, to an array of enterprises, including severalcompanies in the Fortune 500. It has locations in the UK, France, and the U.S., withprimary service centers in Hungary and the Philippines. Merlin’s stock in trade is costeffective, multilingual, 24x7 support, and Yammer helps it deliver on that promise.Merlin uses its Yammer network to improve the customer experience and reducecosts through greater efficiency. “We’ve always been innovative in using technologyto improve service to clients,” CEO Richard Patterson says. “Back in 2007, we startedexploring how we could take advantage of social collaboration to streamline theprocesses built into customer support. But we needed to see how we could use itinternally within our business first.”Engaging EmployeesAdoption was viral when Merlin began using Yammer in 2009. “We did sometraining and encouraged employees to use the network, but the most effectiveincentive was getting our executive team involved,” says IT KnowledgeManagement Consultant Mark Hinson. “For our widespread workforce, knowingthey’re closely connected to senior executives is massive.”CEO Patterson uses Yammer extensively, including as the platform for a virtual Q&Asession that attracted nearly 100 participants. “We could never have done it withoutthe network,” he says. “It’s a powerful medium for communicating the culture andvalues of our business.”Success Story | TECHNOLOGYA fast-growing international enterprise, Merlin Information Systems usesYammer to retain small-company cohesion and responsiveness.>> The network lets employees connect and collaborate across long distances and in many time zones>> It enables efficiencies ranging from reduced email to faster problem-solving>> Yammer is enabling Merlin to move to the next frontier: using a social network as a channel for improving customer serviceContact Sales: 1-888-926-7377 | contactsales@yammer-inc.comIndustryTechnologyEmployees400Founded1991RegionGlobalRichard PattersonCEO, Merlin InformationSystemsUsing the power of socialnetworking to connectpeople improves the way wework internally and supportcustomers. Yammer gives usthe opportunity to reinventourselves as a business.
  • 2. Success Story | TECHNOLOGY“In these days of tight travel budgets, most of us don’t get a chance to go to ourother offices,” Hinson says. “But thanks to Yammer, I can get to know my colleaguesthere, including their areas of expertise and a bit about their personality.”Collaborating together, across the worldThe customer support Merlin provides clients with is continual and seamless,whether it comes from a center in The Philippines or Hungary. “That means thosetwo offices need to be tightly linked, and Yammer is the way we do that,” Hinsonexplains.Indeed, the network has become a primary channel for company workflow. Teamleaders use Yammer to send daily briefings to their staff, and regardless ofwhere they’re based or what shift they’re on, agents see the briefing, plus all theresponses.Yammer has also proven to be a vital tool when Merlin needs to quickly set up anew service desk. When the company wins an assignment to run a help desk, ithas just a month or two to put infrastructure and staff in place and get it up andrunning. To facilitate that process, the company sets up Yammer groups withkey people. The network gives them easy access to all the pertinent files andconversations, from the start of the project to the finish.Increased agility throughout the businessMerlin is a growing company, and Yammer has helped them deal with that growth. “Yammer is a critical part of the maturitymodel that will help us thrive as we grow. It’s becoming our center for internal communication,” Hinson says.“When you’re a small company, you have intimacy, so it’s easier to work together and deliver personalized services toclients,” Hinson observes. “Yammer lets us keep giving our customers small-company service, even though we’ve become amedium-sized one.”As Merlin’s network use has grown, its email volume has shrunk. “I reckon I get 50 percent less email now than I used to,”Patterson says. “I’ve saved time and I’m more effective as a result of that — there’s no question.”After reaping so many benefits internally, Merlin is tackling its CEO’s goal of extending its social network to customers,creating an entirely new service channel. “It’s all about providing faster, more efficient and effective support to customers,”Patterson says. “There’s absolutely no doubt in my mind that Yammer will become the foundation of collaboration andcommunication not only within our organization, but between our company, our customers, and pertinent third parties. It’s afundamental part of how we man and operate our company.”Mark HinsonIT KnowledgeManagement ConsultantOur staff was eager to tap intoYammer. Its interface is intuitiveand its benefits become apparentquickly.
  • 3. Success Story | TECHNOLOGYTHE RESULTS>> Greater efficiency. Team leaders use the network for daily briefings; YammerGroups facilitate the fast roll-out of new service desks.>> A new service paradigm. External Networks will allow Merlin to leverage thepower of social networking to support customers in innovative ways.>> Unified company culture. Yammer ties together a global workforce, whouses it for everything from company announcements to executive forums.>> Reduced email. Email is down about 50 percent as executives and employeesuse the network for more targeted and searchable communication.For more information about Merlin: www.misgl.com For more information about Yammer: www.yammer.comABOUT YAMMERYammer (www.yammer.com) is a best-in-class Enterprise Social Network used by more than 200,000organisations worldwide -- including 85 percent of the Fortune 500 -- to foster team collaboration, empoweremployees, drive business agility and promote organisational connectedness. Yammer’s freemium businessmodel lets customers see the value of Yammer before upgrading to the premium offering. Founded in 2008,Yammer is now part of the Microsoft Office Division.Yammer is a fundamental partof how we man and operate ourcompany.”Richard PattersonCEO

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