by CorpComms on 29/09/2010 17:34:01 in CorpComms Online
Joint Winners: DHL 40th anniversary photo competition
Helen Dunne is the editor of CorpComms Magazine, follow her tweets here @CorpCommsMag
Turning 40 is a major milestone for any company but when the birthday coincides with a year of global recession and major restructuring, it is not really appropriate to launch an expensive celebration. But global logistics company DHL wanted to recognise the achievements of 500,000 employees across more than 220 countries with a centrally built, yet locally administered, campaign.
Headquartered in Bonn, Germany, the company also wanted to support its One DHL brand positioning, which celebrates its diverse workforce and global expertise.
Having rejected ideas such as a coffee table book as too expensive, an online photo competition that offered employees the chance to post their photographic souvenirs (or even Photoshopped images) on a specially created microsite. The judges described this as a 'really global, company-centric campaign' that highlighted DHL's personality. They added: 'This was a lovely idea that brought the brand to life.'
The site was built to work on multiple Internet platforms, with additional services such as animation, voting, comments and dynamically generated content.
Recognising that it was important to get employees enthused from the outset, DHL created full briefing packs with materials, such as posters and animated GIFs for emails, provided for local translation and adaptation. The competition led to more than 2,800 photos being downloaded by staff in 112 countries, ranging from images of employees planting 1,050 mangroves in Bali to Latin American staff pulling an American Airlines Boeing 737 at Miami Airport in support of the annual charity contest Pull together - win together to pictures of staged underwater deliveries in Turkey. Almost 3,500 comments were made about the images, and 18,000 employees registered with the site - an achievement that the judges described as 'good success metrics'.
The competition ran in three stages with country, regional and global winners. Post campaign materials included posters, postcards, banners and a looping presentation to run in reception areas. 'A nice concept that was simply but effectively executed,' said the judges.
From being a UK-based private medical insurance business, Bupa has transformed following a series of acquisitions into a global healthcare business with 52,000 employees in 11 countries. But far from being a cohesive unified workforce, the enlarged group struggled with incompatible IT networks, hundreds of locations, multiple time zones and languages and employees ranging from care home workers, call centre staff and medical professionals. In a move that the judges said 'should be applauded for encouraging a digital approach across the group', Bupa launched a global social networking site Bupa Live designed to be accessible 'anywhere, anytime'.
Bupa Live, which was based on Jive Social Business Software, is being rolled out in phases. The first phase targeted office based employees, which make up 30 per cent of the headcount, with a special focus on super users, middle managers and advocates among the senior leadership.
But rather than launch a finished product, a multi-disciplinary team of IT, human resources and internal communications staff decided to 'launch and learn'. Anyone who expressed an interest was invited to participate in the planning stages, while early adopters established the tone and culture of this new way of working. Its success with this initiative has prompted Bupa to reach out to the Bupa Live community with specific queries or issues, requesting assistance to solve the problem.
Bupa Live currently has more than 7,500 registered users, a figure that is growing at a rate of 450 per month, and has been used in much more creative ways than originally thought. It was used to support the consultation process during a redundancy programme, giving 900 employees 22 private areas to discuss their concerns. Staff were invited to upload 'audition tapes' to win the opportunity to interview chief executive Ray King; the video entries and final interview were watched almost 7,000 times. The healthcare group also opened the doors of its annual leadership conference attended by 300 Bupa leaders to non-delegates, sharing real time news, films, slides, tweets and blog commentary. These were watched more than 10,000 times, and the feedback was positive. 'It's great to hear updates on all the divisions and businesses and fantastic that Bupa Live allows us to see these presentations even though we're not attending the forum,' said one employee. The cost of the event was also slashed by £30,000 as fewer printed materials and publicity collateral were required.
Since its launch, Bupa Live users score between five and ten per cent higher in employee opinion surveys than non-users. They are also better informed about the business, scoring ten per cent higher than non Bupa Live users.
The site has generated more than 3,000 blog posts, in excess of 3,200 discussions and 450 videos since its launch in May 2009, and has generated estimated cost savings in excess of £158,000 through enhanced collaboration and engagement. 'A brave move that has enjoyed consistent growth, and generated an impressive return on investment,' said the judges.
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