Before Sharonview Federal Credit Union, a $1.4 billion institution headquartered in South Carolina, the number one employee complaint was the inability to quickly find policy, procedure, and product information. Siloed departmental information led to inefficiency and inconsistency. The goal of fixing this chronic problem drove the decision to purchase Engageware, and to centralize and make searchable the credit union’s policy, product, and procedure information
- Would content have to be perfect before uploading it into the new system?
- Would employees buy into the new way of doing things?
- What steps should we take to ensure a successful transition?
Keys to Success:
- Relinquish the urge to have perfect content before launching a new database.
Gather up existing content and determine what to focus on now and what could be improved upon over time. For Sharonview, this meant ensuring all essential forms were included at kick-off, as well as answers to the top 20 most frequently asked employee questions.
- Leverage the central database to increase employee accountability.
A central database creates a single source of truth to which all employees are accountable. When it came to lengthy, complicated procedures, Sharonview was able to reduce errors and inconsistency by referencing AskSharon!. When exceptions did occur, employees were immediately sent an email, with their manager copied, that included a link to review the correct procedure in AskSharon!. This decreased exception reports and created a culture of accountability
- Brainstorm creative campaigns to encourage usage of the new database.
Take time to brainstorm fun ways to familiarize employees with the new system. Sharonview hosted an internal contest to get people acquainted with the new search tool and to inject humor into the difficulty of change.
- Gradually sunset other sources of information then “pull the plug.”
For roughly five weeks, the Sharonview team kept content in old locations and legacy systems at the same time they trained on Ask Sharon!. Then, when the time was right, they made the change. This made it clear to employees there was now one source for information and employee questions.
- Encourage feedback on content and reward people for speaking up.
After launch, Sharonview took feedback seriously and acted promptly on all suggestions. The result was employees who felt ownership over making the system better.
- 1000 questions per day answered by Engageware instead of employees asking other employees.
- Successful adoption of a single source of information across all departments.
- Reduced exception reports.
- A culture of accountability and ownership.
“I’m honestly ecstatic about how it’s working. It has accomplished what we wanted it to accomplish. And it works.”
– ROSALYN HUDSON, AVP OF MEMBER SERVICES