On May 13, 2009, Jonathan Hanwit, Director of Client Services, and Guusje Bendeler, Creative Director, of Parallax http://www.thinkparallax.com presented insight on new captivating trends for online employee communications to 20+ L.A. Chapter members.
While Parallax clients present objectives and strategies, Jon and Guusje (pronounced “Who-sha”) focus on compelling, interactive, explorative visual communications that take online employee communications past the usual intranet and newsletter formats. Jon and Guusje emphasize, “Employees seek an inside, personal perspective from each other on company information, rather than an executive one.”
We saw an online virtual employee tradeshow example for Qualcomm to educate employees about what each division is currently working on, including plans for the future. The employee tradeshow featured:
- Virtual department booths and a 2-3 minute video of a department head,
- Links to internal teams’ website, and graphics “collaged” from photos of Qualcomm’s employees and facilities.
- A simple review quiz led to a giftcard incentive.
The site garnered thousands of employee clicks and results were increased employee awareness, product and service knowledge and increased retention/engagement.
The next example was a customizable intranet entitled “The Skinny” where employees may choose what content they prefer through a choice of widgets. Think of a typical intranet page combined with iGoogle. The objective is to streamline workflow, increase engagement, and make communication in real time. For example, not only can a favorite dictionary widget be linked to the homepage, but a company’s unique terminology dictionary can be available.
And finally, Jon and Guusje presented an Online and Printed Employee Annual Report for Qualcomm, a “Thank You” that has increased morale, awareness, and promoted “connection.”
Outstanding annual report highlights that helped connect 15,000 global employees were:
- A photo contest featuring 700 photos taken around the world by Qualcomm employees,
- Text content featuring fun, culture questions such as “How does wireless affect your life?”
We asked questions, “How labor intensive was it putting the project content together?” Jon and Guusje pointed out that content was generated by employees, for employees, which makes putting the project together easier for us!
As communications professionals who want to spark employee engagement, knowledge or perhaps education on an upcoming merger, we now have new, energetic online employee communications tools to support our company or clients’ efforts (see Parallax Handout.)
“The Skinny” has won a past IABC Silver Quill Award, while the Online and Print Employee Annual Reports have been submitted for 2008 Gold and Silver Quill Awards. Good luck to Jon, Guusje, and their clients!