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We are all members of this community because we believe in and understand the power of social collaboration. We live it and breathe it everyday. I want to share this case study because it puts into measurable numbers the power of an effective digital communications strategy that leverages the corporate intranet.

We all know that people care about money. And they part with it cautiously. Which is why one energy company couldn't understand why employees were not taking advantage of their phenomenal stock option benefits. Employees could scoop up company shares at a 40% discount!

Profits at the company were excellent, international headcount was up, the bottom line for this oilfield concern was gushing - but participation in the stock option program was flatter than a dime.

Employees simply weren’t buying in.

 

5 benefits in one communication tool

The moribund stock program was troublesome for the energy company because engagement was one of its key values. The leadership felt that investing in shares made employees stakeholders and participants in their own success. The program was well-supported, with a 50-page document outlining the details of the stock program to all 35,000 staff, plus yearly refreshers. Compensation specialists were trained in its workings and features.

What the energy company discovered was that a corporate-y program binder was a poor conversationalist. Teams had been trained to talk up features, but the concerns of employees fell behind.

So the energy company spearheaded a digital education and awareness effort. They placed a 4-question, 7-language, company-wide poll on their intranet which was amplified through an email campaign. They also took their communications offline by maintaining program awareness with face-to-face meetings.  The refreshed program was rolled out in just 3 weeks.

 

 

Poll Position: A 28% bump for enrolment

shutterstock_51159553.jpgThe poll blew the doors off!

  • 1,700 new enrollments were registered
  • 950 users increased their commitment

 

By moving the stock options program information out of dusty binders and into a digital collaboration space, the energy company achieved five goals:

  1. Education - The poll educated employees on the value of the stock option program in a greatly simplified and condensed way
  2. Engagement - Employees could pose questions (and read answers) that were both anonymous and transparent to other employees
  3. Metrics - It boosted awareness across language groups and circled areas where traction was strong or weak
  4. Alignment - It put the organization’s values right on the table. Teamwork. Performance. Learning.
  5. Savings - It saved the company $20,000 in printing costs

A key takeaway here is that the energy company wasn’t foisting a disliked idea on unwilling workers. The stock option program was generous and supported. The program wasn’t the issue, just the delivery of it.

Has anyone experienced something similar -- where your company or anyone you know tried to launch an initiative and its results only skyrocketed once it was brought into a social space?