How to amplify employee engagement with automation and data

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New ways to amplify engagement

In the digital age, communicators should be working smarter, not harder. Learn how the comms team at Extreme Networks leverages data to optimize communications with their employees, how they engage their audience with different content types and bundles, and how your team can apply these same strategies.

Video Transcript

Kyla Turner:

So I think it’s about that time. I think let’s go ahead and kick it off. All right. Well, welcome to our session. New ways to amplify engagement with Extreme Networks. And sorry, I can’t help it. I have to tell you we’re going to be taking it to the extreme and I am super excited because no one I’ve seen in recent times has optimized their communications and amplified their engagement better than Extreme Networks and their E360 program.

Leaders are brought in, their employees are engaged and they’re hungry for more. And they are reaching nearly everyone in their organization. They are on fire and they have two outstanding comms professionals leading the way. They have the vision. They have the discipline. They know how to get people on board to fulfill their mission.

So I’m very excited to welcome Jasmine Davis and Lisa Hayden to the program. So thank you all for being here. And I know we were going to try to get through the intros very quickly because you have such great examples and a great story to share with us today. So let’s go ahead and start. And can you tell everyone who may not be familiar with Extreme Networks a little bit about the company and what you do?

Lisa Hayden:

So thanks for having us today, Kyla, and to SocialChorus, we’re very excited to be here today. So my name is Lisa and I am the social media manager at Extreme. An Extreme Networks is a networking company. We are actually heavily involved in cloud networking right now. So networking for those of you who might not be familiar, you want to think about the WiFi you have in your homes. We sell that same technology to businesses and to enterprises. We deal with fortune 500 companies, schools, universities, hospitals, as well as stadiums and sports venues. We’re the official WiFi solutions provider of both the NFL and the MLB. So we do work with very large clients who need to provide that same type of networking experience you have in your home at the enterprise level.

We are a global company. We have over 3000 employees and contractors around the globe and we’ve been in business for over 25 years now. And E360 has really helped us to reach all of those employees and contractors globally. And I’ll turn it over to Jasmine to introduce herself as well. The second half of the comms team here for E360.

Jasmine Davis:

Thank you, Lisa. And thank you, Kyla and SocialChorus for the opportunity and the space to share Extreme’s comm story. We’re really excited to be here. So my role under the corporate comms umbrella as internal communications manager is to keep our 3000 plus global employees informed with all the latest and greatest happenings from around the company. And to ensure that our employees are engaged, they’re our advocates and making sure that we enhance our company culture and keeping that top of mind.

And we’re able to achieve this by partnering with members of our executive team and various departments from around the company using our internal app, which we affectionately called E360, but it’s Extreme 360, the longer version. And like Lisa said, I helped to co-manage the application, as well as our internal intranet site, the source. I also host and manage a lot of our internal events like employee town halls, department all hands, educational webinars, newsletters, you name it. That’s what I do. So I’m really excited to be here. Thank you.

Kyla Turner:

Good to have you and Lisa, tell us a little bit more about what you do in your role.

Lisa Hayden:

So in my role in addition to helping Jasmine with E360, I also oversee all of Extremes corporate social media handles, and I work with the field teams on their regional social handles. And I also work very closely with Jasmine on some communications initiatives around culture. We work a lot with our diversity and inclusion council to write external blog posts, featuring them and talking about the great things that we’re doing internally and to share those externally.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. So you both have the some of the internal and a lot of the culture. I love to hear that. So to introduce myself, my name is Kyla Turner. I am the strategic advisor for SocialChorus, and I love being here. And I love hearing these stories because in my background, as a communication professional, I was actually a customer of SocialChorus before joining the team. So when I was with Love’s Travel Stops, we also implemented a new platform, Loves Now, for our communications. And I got to see firsthand how it not only transformed our internal comms, but our entire culture as well, just as you’re going to hear today from Extreme Networks. I love sharing these stories and let’s go ahead and just get started. Oh, wait. Before we get started, do you have to give you a couple of housekeeping notes.

We would love to hear your questions. So if you would please put those in the chat, I’m going to be monitoring those. We also have some screenshots. I’m going to be jumping back and forth, but if I see some good questions in there and we come to a stopping point, I would love to stop and ask some questions as we go. If we don’t get to them, we will save some for the end and also do a Q&A then. Also, if you hear a great quote or a good example, you’re going to hear a lot of them feel free to post to your social media networks. It’s #tune2021. Okay. So let’s jump in and I love to start at the beginning and we say you were there kind of at the beginning, tell us the story of that moment when Extreme Networks knew their internal comms needed a new solution.

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah. So my first week was actually the first week where they launched E360 internally for all employees. And I remember being there and we were talking about why the company was investing in this. And it was because over the past several months before the launch of the internal app, they had run some testing on emails. They had put tags on the emails, going out to employees from the executives and all company-wide communications.

And the results were not, they were not good. And that did not make the communications team or the executives happy when they were hearing that only 20 to 30% of the employees were opening their emails. They were not happy because they know they were sending those emails because they applied to all employees company-wide. It was a communication that everyone needed to know and be engaged with. And the employees were just not opening it. They were getting too many emails, too many things were going out. Any emails that weren’t even just coming from the executive team, they were coming from different departments.

So they needed both a tool to help ensure those company-wide updates were seen. And then to cut down on the number of global emails that were just going around from different departments. So that’s when they looked at socialChorus and then we had a sales kickoff event and they decided to roll this tool out first to the sales and marketing teams, because at that point in time, our sales organization was the largest department at Extreme. So it made sense to get that buy-in from those two teams first, and then the adoption from there just grew once those two teams were active, engaged, we rolled it out to the subsequent departments.

And over the next two years, we really saw adoption increase. Jasmine will go into it later in the presentation, but that’s how we become more successful, just growing it into different departments with some structure behind it.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. And what a great process to start with sales and marketing and kind of get everyone engaged and then continue rolling out to your organization. It’s that good? It’s a good way to do it. And now let’s see, let’s jump into, it has now been a few years later and your program has definitely grown just as you’re talking, it’s matured, it’s transformed. In fact, let me share a screen because you have some amazing numbers here, but I want to make sure everyone sees. So this is where you are now. I mean, look at these numbers and it’s just been in a few years’ time. Right? So how is your program working now?

Lisa Hayden:

Now, I mean, if you look at these numbers, I just mentioned 20 to 30% of people were opening those company-wide emails. And now on a monthly basis, actually daily basis, daily and weekly, we’re seeing 90% of employees in the application. And then when we investigate those certain posts that are for company-wide updates. So we’re doing a post instead of an email, the engagement rate and open rates on those posts are phenomenal. They’re upwards of 70 and 80%. And for a company update where just five years ago, it was around 20 to 30%. It’s an extreme increase that our team is very happy that we’ve gotten those numbers up and they’ve seen it in the culture wise too. Our employees are more engaged because they are seeing the information they’re more engaged and they’re more effective because they have the tools that they need in front of them.

And one of the things that I will stop sharing this, I want to talk about your leadership because when we’ve talked before, we’ve really talked about how your leaders drove engagement. I always wonder, okay, those are incredible numbers. How did you get there? And was it a leadership push or was it you all just really doing some amazing content creation? What was the push that got you to these types of numbers?

So I think it was the leaders seeing those numbers originally, where it was very low from the number of employees company-wide opening those emails. Our E-team is competitive. They want people to be engaging with their content. They want to get the numbers up as high as possible. They’re just very driven to get the numbers through the roof. So they were very quick to help us. They’ve always been extremely supportive. I know Jasmine would say the same thing. And one thing that we do with them is that we’ve shown them that video sometimes works better with our employee base.

So the executives have all come on board and they will record selfie videos for us even if they’re on the road, they’re not in their home office, they’re traveling somewhere, they’ll pull out their phone in an airport or in an Uber and they’ll record a two minute update so that we can send that to employees rather than a one-page email to employees because it’s more engaging. And we see that our employees react better to it in that the number of video views is higher than email open rates.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah, I think, and we see a screen. Let me see, I have a screen for your leadership videos. I know this is something I had heard about E360 years ago, and this was one of the things that was really setting you apart is that your leadership was so engaged and that they didn’t mind doing these videos. And again, we’re showing some examples of your leadership and the videos that they do and the numbers are getting from it. How did they know to do this? Or how did you get them so involved that they felt comfortable enough to shoot some videos on? I know they were just doing it on the fly, like you said, in the back of Uber’s or at the airport, or how were you able to get them that level of comfort and that level of involvement?

Lisa Hayden:

I think it’s two parts, it’s one the data. So having the data to show, and then two it’s working with them. So we don’t write scripts for them. We’ll just send them a couple of bullet points. And once we send them the bullet points they might ask us a question if they just need to clarify something. And then once we have a quick conversation with them, they’ll go and record it. And we always tell them like, less keep it short because people don’t want to watch a video for longer than two or three minutes. So it just really working together to pinpoint them. And then once they’ve gotten more comfortable, now it’s really less involvement from the comms team. We just send them the ask and they’re able to do it since we’ve really honed in on showing them that data. And then how easy it can be to record them.

Kyla Turner:

So we already have a question coming in, and this is a good one. Vanessa asks are the executive videos reviewed before they’re released?

Jasmine Davis:

Absolutely. Of course, most of the time they’re making the videos but they do review them. And not only do we have the videos, but we also have it accompanied with a brief message as well. Because we’ve done some research internally. And though most of our employees enjoy the videos from our executive team. Some preferred the reading part as well, or you can just never know where they’ll be at the time and they might not be able to hear the video. But yes, to answer that question, they absolutely do review the videos as well as the brief messages. Like Lisa said, we just try to keep things very brief and succinct.

A couple of our core values is candor and transparency, which are my two favorite values at Extreme Networks. And each executive team member truly believes in that. And you can see that in some of what you’re seeing on the screen now. We’re constantly being told don’t be afraid to reach out to an E-team member because again, the transparency and the candor piece, but each of our executives have a very unique way that they do videos. Katy, our chief administrative and sustainability officer. She even hosts a weekly Katy’s corners series. So all of our E-team members are definitely on board with video, and it’s such a powerful tool that we definitely leverage at extreme.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. And I love, I feel like that’s where you get the flash when you get your leadership on camera and they’re talking and they’re using their own words, but I also want to go back to can one of you speak to, I know that having the data, the analytics and the insights was huge for your leaders as well. And that was another thing that pushed them to do these videos and get so involved. Can you speak to what you were able to show them with the data and how they use that?

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah, so with the data going back to different content types. We were just trying out all kinds of content types. In the beginning, we were doing long form articles, short form links. We were trying to link back to our internet site because our internet site is where we would host documents that would live for a long time. Any 360 was sort of the way where we would notify people of new updates and then they would click into that link and go to our internet page.

So we would try different content types. And then with the video, once we got that going, we just started looking at the data right away. And we were talking to our CEO. We were like, “Ed, this video got this many views compared to this email that we sent out last week.” And then just showing him that data. That really helped get him on board because he was probably hesitant at the beginning to do it because he was also very busy at the time. This is four or five years ago when there wasn’t a pandemic going on and there was traveling all the time. You’re on a different flight every other week, going to a new customer location or a new office to meet with employees.

So we also didn’t have a lot of time and to be on a call with someone, giving you bullet points that wasn’t always happening. It would most of the time be us sending him bullet points and maybe he was recording the video at nighttime. So it was really having to have those calls in advance and have like bi-weekly calls or monthly calls with the executive team when we were getting this, going to get them more comfortable at the beginning. So that now where we are today, it’s more mature and we don’t have to be that hands-on because now everyone’s on the same page with how it should operate.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. And we have a lot of good questions coming in about that. Sheena asks, are there any other ways that your executives engage besides video? These videos are great. How else do they engage?

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah, so they are also getting very heavily engaged. They’re going into the posts, they’re liking the posts, they’re commenting on employee submissions. So we get a lot of employees sharing things that are happening in their offices, or now when they’re working remotely, they’re sharing updates or screenshots of Zoom team meetings, and the executives will go on and they’ll comment on them, or we have a press release go out and they go in and they do comment there and tell employees why it’s so important. And they really go in, we have a shout outs channel actually that Jasmine launched as well. So the executives and any employees they’ll go to that shout outs channel, and then they will create one post and it shouts out a specific employee or team about a great accomplishment that they just had.

Kyla Turner:

Oh, that’s great to hear. I love to hear that they’re engaging in this way. And I’m glad you mentioned comments because there’s another leadership video question in here. Do you enable comments? Do you enable your employees to ask questions during these videos and either one of you can answer and was that hard for your leaders to wrap their heads around? I know that’s a question we get often is that can be scary. It’s just open it up for anyone to comment or ask. How did you handle that governance?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, so we definitely have the comments open. Again, we’re all about transparency and candor and we want to have people express themselves in the comment section. So it’s very rare that we ever turn off the comments for anything. We want people to share what their thoughts are and if they don’t want to share, that’s completely fine. But we do get a lot of engagement in the comment section and as Lisa said, it is it’s imperative that our E-team would show up on E360 in terms of utilizing the platform because that means like, hey, it’s not just the employees using it. It’s our E-team, our E-staff and using it as well. So comments are always encouraged and don’t be afraid to turn those things off. I’ll say that.

Kyla Turner:

I agree. I think that goes along with transparency. You’re right. Go ahead, Lisa.

Jasmine Davis:

I was going to say, I understand where those questions are coming from because we were hesitant. I was especially hesitant when we were first talking about opening up comments when SocialChorus first launched it because we were like, “We don’t know what people are going to say,” but then it came back to, transparency is one of our core values. We want to be transparent.

And then the other thing was another core value is ownership. So if an employee is going to write something on E360, their name is attached to that comment. So HR will see it right away if it’s not something appropriate. So that wasn’t something we were really too concerned about because we knew even if something went up, we would be able to take it down quickly and then report it if anything like that had happened. And that has never happened to us. So it was always just one of those concerns. It’s a possibility, but it’s never happened and we don’t think that it would happen.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. And I feel like tying it back to your core values is a great way to show the importance of your leaders kind of walking the talk and living out your core values. I see a question in here and it’s one that I remember getting at Loves. What if you don’t have an engaged set of leaders or if your highest executives aren’t engaged or don’t want to do videos, was there anything that you were doing to help pull them in or still get across the importance of that visibility?

Lisa Hayden:

I would say besides video we have our E360 first approach. So that goes back to getting more departments and more leaders on E360 originally. After the first year with the program, we came out with it in the comms team, as well as our CEO and our COO. We would go and say post it at E360. And we called it out at E360 first approach because we want employees to remember that news breaks first on E360. A company-wide update, a company video, it’s going to drop first on E360. And that’s the place that’s the central place for everyone to go to if you’re looking for timely information or a new announcement or update that has just come out.

So by doing that, we got into the executives minds that if they had an update that they wanted all employees to see or an entire department to see, they should post it at E360 first, whether or not it’s a video. Like our HR team, for example, they have a monthly newsletter that goes out that highlights all of the employees who have anniversaries that month. And they were originally just doing an outlook email and it would go out at different times of the month. It wasn’t on a regular cadence, but now we’re putting it in E360. It’s a new format that’s engaging for employees to click into. And then employees who are spotlighted that month, our head of HR also will ask them to tell their story.

So now included in that article update is a couple of different stories firsthand from the employees who were spotlighted that month. And it’s not an email, it’s still a text update, but it’s on the application and it’s easier to engage with. And then we can still include it in email newsletters that we send from the application.

Kyla Turner:

I love that. I love that E360 first approach in that priority. How did you get that across? I feel like that is always an initiative that we’re looking at as internal communicators of, we want our employees to hear at first and we want to have this information be a primary source. how did you get the entire company to adopt that principle in that priority?

Lisa Hayden:

So also during these past five years, Extreme has acquired four different companies in that same span. So it was really important before we went on this acquisition spree to get our employees who were at the legacy extreme company to really be full fledged advocates for the platform, because we were going to be bringing on thousands of new employees from these different organizations. And Jasmine can speak to this because she actually came from one of the acquired companies. When they come on board, things change, processes are new. It’s not the same as it was at the previous company because everything is changing in migrating to these new platforms.

So we really wanted our extreme employees to be advocates for the new employees coming on board so that when they asked the former extreme employees, how do I find this information? They had it in their minds, oh, E360 first. Go to E360 first. And this is where you’ll find information. And then if you don’t find it there, reach out to the comms team or reach out to HR to find that information.

And in addition to just using word of mouth and getting the executives to talk about it during company-wide all hands. we also had banners in the major office locations that would say E360 first, and we would have directions on how to download E360 and how to use it. And they were just big banners in the lunchroom.

So it was sort of everywhere you went, you saw both in the opposite. And then on our intranet site, we had ads for it. So people were seeing it everywhere. They went.

Kyla Turner:

That’s fantastic. And you’re proving my point that sometimes I feel like the old school ways of doing things, the banners, the posters are still effective once we’re all kind of getting back into the office.

Lisa Hayden:

It’s [inaudible 00:24:31] but then, yeah.

Kyla Turner:

I love all of those different ways. And Jasmine, I love that we’re talking now about reaching your employees and all the different ways that you’re doing it. So let’s talk about how you are connecting them to that information, the specific information they need to do their jobs and the information that they need. What are some of the things that you’ve started doing as you’ve kind of started leading this platform?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, sure. So when I first came on board and as Lisa said, I was a part of an acquisition. So the very first thing I saw when I went into the San Jose office was a banner for E360. And I was told that, “Hey, this is the platform that we use to communicate with our internal audiences. And this is what you’ll be helping them manage.” So I had to drink the Kool-Aid pretty quickly. One of my first tasks was to make sure that my teammates from my previous company were all onboarded. So as I was onboarding and learning more about the company, I had the task to make sure that my teammates from the previous company were onboarding seamlessly to Extreme Networks as well.

So one of the first things I took on at Extreme Networks was I studied the platform, saw the content type, saw what was the functionalities. And I saw that there was an email newsletter. So I started a weekly Roundup, which takes on the most important pieces of content during the week. And I put it all in one place in the weekly Roundup when we’d send those out every Friday. So it could be the breaking news, like Lisa mentioned, any kind of announcements any sales enablement tools, or it alerts new partnerships, customer wins. We just wrapped up a national pet day for some social advocacy. So people can kind of actually see those.

So the newsletter has been a big hit, and I do get emails from time to time from our employees that say, “Hey, this is very helpful. Sometimes I can’t get in the platform every day, but at least I know the top things that are going on around the company.” So it really warms my heart to know that people are engaged and that they feel a part in that they’re getting the most important information that they need also to as Lisa mentioned, we do use the E360 platform and I did see a question come in.

We use the mobile app as well as the desktop version. But we also use our intranet site called the source. And that is a SharePoint based platform. That’s where the content really lives. And we’ve actually added E360 amplifiers to the home page in the different departmental site. So we have specific channels that might… Yep, that’s it right there. So we might have different channels. So sales enablement on the source site, they’ll have their specific feed in there versus our executive corner, which I’ll have our executive channel feed.

So we break the news on E360, but if the content needs to live a lot longer, it’s on the source site. So what you’re seeing right now at the top left-hand corner is our E360 desktop. We just launched our quick links and they have been a huge game changer for us. So we are bringing more people into the platform, which is exactly what we want. So what we did was we pulled our employees, worked with it to see, which are the top places that our employees are going and how can we bring them into each E360?

So as you can see the top left-hand side, if you can see it, it’s the source again, that’s our intranet site. That’s where our content lives a lot longer than we have my app. So that’s your app directory. So people can actually click on that and go where they need to go. Spark is our sales enablement site. So sales team, we’re pulling them in there. And then at the very end. We change that on a weekly basis. So if there’s something like in a mandatory all-employee training, we’ll put that up there. Right now we’re running a company store sell. So that’s up there right now. We’re also going to be hosting a day of giving. So that last one, we use that to change out what’s going on around the company. So people can [crosstalk 00:28:55].

Kyla Turner:

I love the thought that you’re changing these out. We have so many customers who think you go with the four at the top and then they need to stay. And I know, and I like how you have three that do. And so you do kind of get that, that habit going, that behavior, but I like how you’re reserving one to switch out for whatever is going on and what you’re trying to direct your employees to do.

Jasmine Davis:

Absolutely. And as you can see, and just as an example, so the last one on the right is the company store sell right below that image on the right side, next to the lady. You can actually see the owner on our intranet homepage, the source, we have corporate store. So when they click on that and E360, it takes them to that homepage where they can then click and go where they need to go. So again, we’re trying to bring people to the platform and then have them go out wherever they need to go.

Another example of the feeds is actually in there as well. Katy, again she does a Katy’s Corner Series. So as you can see, that’s the feed that goes in there and the subsequent posts, and then over to the left is our Weekly Roundup newsletter. Again goes out every Friday to our global employee base. And we use a newsletter feature. We use the one where there’s like a featured post and then the subsequent post are right below that. So that’s just an example of us leveraging the newsletter. And right there, we were promoting our brand new office of the CTO podcasts. So that that’s how we keep our employees informed and engaged as much as possible.

Kyla Turner:

You’re doing quite a bit. I love this. And one of the things that we haven’t talked about yet is content bundling, which to me was a whole new turn. Tell me what you’re doing when you talk about content bundling.

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah. So it’s one of my personal favorites just because I live in the newsletter world. So for example, we just launched our major league baseball and Extreme Networks partnerships. So we worked with our marketing team to identify all the assets that they had available. That way we can ensure that our internal teams knew exactly what was going to come out before the press release, just making sure our internal teams were well-informed before the release goes out. So each post is culminated inside the newsletter. So one post would be the MLB Extreme Lockup as well as a video. Again, as you all know, by now, we love video at Extreme Networks. So on the left-hand side, you’d see our Chief Operating Officer, Norman Rice and our Chief Marketing Officer Wes Durow. They did a quick video, basically explaining more about the partnership, the intricacies and why we should all be excited for such a great team effort and accomplishment that we’re able to partner with the MLB.

So that is a content piece, email signatures, press release. Once that comes out, what we’re communicating to our partners and customer base, all of that is culminated into one newsletter. So it’s literally a one-stop shop where you can reference all the pieces of content and that’s how we bundle everything. So that is how we do that. And to get the word out there, of course we do emails, but we also leverage our mobile push notifications as well, which might bring them right back to whatever piece of content we want.

So the example up there at the right hand side, we were announcing our major league baseball partnership. So not only did we hit them up via email, we gave them a gentle mobile push notification. So they can directly view the video and see all and hear the excitement directly from Norman and Wes.

Kyla Turner:

I love this bundle. I love seeing this all because I think that everyone needs layers. That’s how you get a message to stick. And I think there’s so many good layers in here. So are you putting all of this within your platform? You have video, you have newsletter, you have press release, you have outreach via email plus the notification. So all of this lives within E360?

Jasmine Davis:

All of it lives via E360. And for this particular messaging we did because we do have partnerships, not only with the MLB, but the NFL, but we do have an extreme game day channel. So a lot of that content lived there, but we made it an auto follow channel. So all of our employees are accessing the content. And again, we do leverage our intranet site. So there is a dedicated site just for our MLB partnership. And they can reference all of the materials there as well. So each of those content pieces direct them right back to the internet site. Again, we break the news, give them everything, they could reference it on E360, but then if they need to really, really dig down and see the resource later on, then it’s definitely on the internet.

Kyla Turner:

I love hearing that. And this is something I have to ask you because I know you’re measuring all of these things and we sometimes see some trepidation from different companies of saying, we don’t want to send out too many push notifications. We don’t want to bother our employees. And I heard you refer to it as it’s a gentle notification. I will say one of the things we learned at Love’s was our employees wanted work push notifications, but it was actually something they asked for. They said, we’re going to miss it. We’re very busy doing our jobs. So they actually asked us to send out more so that they wouldn’t miss the big pieces that we were trying to push out. Do you see something similar? What is your insights in your reporting telling you on that?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, so we don’t over abuse the mobile push notification, and we have the same exact theory for emails as well. That’s why we always try to leverage or tell people like, “Hey, come to E360 check it two minutes a day.” You’ll get all the information that you need. So we do have people that definitely prefer email versus mobile. We have the metrics for that. Sometimes it’s a little bit, half and half on that, but we also just make sure the content shows up in different areas for them as well to leverage.

So again, on the intranet site, E360 push notifications. As Lisa mentioned, if it’s on a banker somewhere, we will do that too. And pre-pandemic, we were actually also leveraging Zoom as well to let people know what’s going on. But in terms of the yearn for mobile push notifications, I think we’re at a really good place where people aren’t feeling like they’re being bugged or being annoyed by them. But Lisa, if you have anything else to add.

Lisa Hayden:

No, I think you captured it perfectly. Jasmine. Another thing too with push notifications is that we do work with all of our program managers at extreme who are contributing content to E360 and we make sure that they sync with us before they schedule a push notification or something that way too many aren’t going out on the same day or at the same time. There’s some spacing between major posts like that.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. Now you have all this good news to share and you bundled it and put it together. So well, there’s a question that came in do you allow for sharing and social advocacy with your news? Is that a priority with the new platform?

Lisa Hayden:

Yes. So we do post all of our press releases, all of our blogs and any resources on our website to E360 and then we’ll also publish social campaigns and we’ll tweak them for employees to share, and we will schedule them to certain channels on E360 so that employees are able to go in and share, but not all content is shareable. Of course, like the selfie videos are internal only, but anything external, like a press release, we do make shareable and we include a default post if an employee would like to use that, or they’re always welcome to write their own social post as well.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. I have another question up here. It says, did you have trouble getting people to proactively contribute content? So now we’re talking about user generated content and are you allowing it, how much are you allowing and are you promoting it to come in and get that continuous content from your employees?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, yeah. Oh, I’ll take this one, Lisa, and then you can definitely add more color to that. So we do have content contributors for each channel and they help to generate our content for those different channels. Now, in terms of our end users, we did have people that were shy to share. Then you have people that are really, really excited to share. And we have been doing a lot of different campaigns internally not only to increase advocacy and kind of like that social hope we’ll get together filling now that we’re in the virtual world, but that has also helped to make people a little bit more comfortable to use the platform.

So for example, we did a throwback Thursday with sports like people were able to share their special sports photos. We gave them a prize each week for whoever submitted and that got people’s feet wet to use the image feature or to get in there and make a post.

So I feel like even though we had like an MO in terms of getting more engaged, I think it definitely helped people get their feet wet. So usually people, when they do it once they want to do it again and again and again. So that definitely helps to build the advocacy piece with getting people on board. Now we did just recently start E360 office hours throughout the month of April. And we do that just to make sure that our employees know that they have the opportunity to have one-on-one with myself or Lisa to go over the platform and to answer any questions that they might have in terms of usage. I get into usage and then of course my mind goes crazy and I’m like, “Well, what do you do?”

Well, then we’d start discussing content strategy so I can bring them back to the platform so they could share more about what they’ve got going on. We also host team Extreme EDU webinars, which each month we host a different webinar that covers a different department and each quarter Lisa and I and Lauren Peresada, she’s our account manager at SocialChorus. We host a webinars to let people know what’s the latest and greatest in the world of E360 in terms of maybe the image posts went from one to 10. So it’s kind of an Instagram feel as well as a quick link. So we definitely keep them abreast on what’s going on with E360 and Lisa I’ll let you add anything if you have anything else.

Lisa Hayden:

I was going to say another thing that we didn’t dive into yet was something that did help with increasing adoption early on. We used to do these analytics dashboards for our executive team and we would show them, because we would pull the data into E360 to see which employees are active. What department are they in? What type of jobs are they? Are they individual contributors managers or are they contractors?

And then from that data, we would present it to our CEO and our COO who really wanted to know they were very engaged and they would then use that in the executive meetings. And they’d be like, “Oh, this department is lower.” And then they would talk with that E-team member. And then it was that E-team member’s job to get their team more engaged. And then it would come from the top down that E-team member would then go and work with their vice presidents who would then cascade it down.

And they would encourage the VPs to go in there and publish because when you see your VPs and your direct managers in there, engaging with the platform and sharing updates, it makes you want to go in and share updates as well. So I think that is something that helped us out originally. But now I’m doing these campaigns like throwback Thursday, and we’re doing another one to celebrate Extreme’s 25th anniversary. We’re asking employees to share throwback photos from their time at Extreme. If there was an event they attended maybe last year or maybe it was 20 years ago and they have a photo of it, we want employees to share those fun photos from the past, and that’s going to be a new channel on E360 for employees to submit to.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. Yeah. So I like that you kind of brought us back to the data and to what your executives are really looking at. I like that kind of competitive piece they’ve got in there too about your whys. Why aren’t you up here at this level of contribution and engagement and really kind of looking at the different teams and departments for that too.

Lisa Hayden:

We could see you, one thing that the sales did specifically because sales has quotas, was that we took the data for sales employees specifically, and then compared it to the quota attainment for two quarters. And we saw that the employees that were meeting or exceeding their quotas were also the most engaged sales employees on a E360. So that helped a lot as well, because then that helped the sales team really get more of the sales employees, onboarded. And then it also translated to the other departments going back to what our CEO and COO always tell us the more engaged the employees are, the more effective they’re going to be. And we had that evidence with sales. So really convincing the other departments. We want you to be active on this because we want the employees to be more effective. We want them to be engaged.

Kyla Turner:

That’s really what it all comes down to. I’m so glad that you said that you kind of led us into this last slide. I know we’re in our last couple of minutes. In conclusion you all produce some really great takeaways for everyone in the audience. Anything else that you’d like to say as we wrap up? Anything else that we should walk away with? I love these conclusion pieces and these three takeaways.

Jasmine Davis:

So really quickly our CEO always tells us that data is the new currency and we use that to help advance our customers and partners in terms of leveraging their data. And we also use that same concept internally. So we have similar data points like everyone else, like country of origin, department who your manager is and who you report up to. And we use those different data pieces to target our audiences, as well as making sure we’re curating the content that really matters to them. So I would definitely say don’t be shy to leverage those data points and really read up and research where your employees are most interested, because I definitely will tell you that does tell a story. The data does tell a story and you can help to enhance that story with data.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah. So very last thing. I know we’re getting ready to go, but I had to pop up this last screen. As you say, if you’re looking at the data and you’re really providing the information that your employees need and want, and you’re meeting them where they are through all of your different the ways that you’re doing that, those were great examples and you’ve received a great response from it. So had to share this slide of that has to feel good. And I’m excited for where you’re going to take this next.

Jasmine Davis:

We are too. And it’s really great to hear from our employees. These are their words, not ours. So you can see for yourself the power of leveraging data to optimize your comms. And I wish everyone the best of luck that was on the call today with that.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah. Thank you so much. Yeah, go ahead, Lisa. [inaudible 00:45:12].

Lisa Hayden:

It’s definitely very important now in this remote world that we live in being able to connect with each other. So these campaigns we’re doing with throwback Thursday and just getting employees to submit what their work from home setup looks like. It really helps enhance that culture where you’re not able to do those large gatherings right now. So I don’t think it’s ever been more important to be able to have a tool, to communicate and help engage your employees.

Kyla Turner:

I agree. And it’s wonderful how you are really prioritizing your employees and their voices and amplifying those. So thank you so much. I know we’re at time. Thank you both for being here. I can’t wait to talk with you more about this and to our audience. Thank you so much for being engaged and being here for the past 45 minutes, we are going to provide a recording of this session and we’re going to follow up on your questions that we didn’t get to as well. But thank you all again. And let’s see, what do we have next? We have a quick 15 minute break and then we have our afternoon keynote coming up to you. So thanks for being with us today. And we will see you all soon.

 

Expand Transcript

Video Transcript

Kyla Turner:

So I think it’s about that time. I think let’s go ahead and kick it off. All right. Well, welcome to our session. New ways to amplify engagement with Extreme Networks. And sorry, I can’t help it. I have to tell you we’re going to be taking it to the extreme and I am super excited because no one I’ve seen in recent times has optimized their communications and amplified their engagement better than Extreme Networks and their E360 program.

Leaders are brought in, their employees are engaged and they’re hungry for more. And they are reaching nearly everyone in their organization. They are on fire and they have two outstanding comms professionals leading the way. They have the vision. They have the discipline. They know how to get people on board to fulfill their mission.

So I’m very excited to welcome Jasmine Davis and Lisa Hayden to the program. So thank you all for being here. And I know we were going to try to get through the intros very quickly because you have such great examples and a great story to share with us today. So let’s go ahead and start. And can you tell everyone who may not be familiar with Extreme Networks a little bit about the company and what you do?

Lisa Hayden:

So thanks for having us today, Kyla, and to SocialChorus, we’re very excited to be here today. So my name is Lisa and I am the social media manager at Extreme. An Extreme Networks is a networking company. We are actually heavily involved in cloud networking right now. So networking for those of you who might not be familiar, you want to think about the WiFi you have in your homes. We sell that same technology to businesses and to enterprises. We deal with fortune 500 companies, schools, universities, hospitals, as well as stadiums and sports venues. We’re the official WiFi solutions provider of both the NFL and the MLB. So we do work with very large clients who need to provide that same type of networking experience you have in your home at the enterprise level.

We are a global company. We have over 3000 employees and contractors around the globe and we’ve been in business for over 25 years now. And E360 has really helped us to reach all of those employees and contractors globally. And I’ll turn it over to Jasmine to introduce herself as well. The second half of the comms team here for E360.

Jasmine Davis:

Thank you, Lisa. And thank you, Kyla and SocialChorus for the opportunity and the space to share Extreme’s comm story. We’re really excited to be here. So my role under the corporate comms umbrella as internal communications manager is to keep our 3000 plus global employees informed with all the latest and greatest happenings from around the company. And to ensure that our employees are engaged, they’re our advocates and making sure that we enhance our company culture and keeping that top of mind.

And we’re able to achieve this by partnering with members of our executive team and various departments from around the company using our internal app, which we affectionately called E360, but it’s Extreme 360, the longer version. And like Lisa said, I helped to co-manage the application, as well as our internal intranet site, the source. I also host and manage a lot of our internal events like employee town halls, department all hands, educational webinars, newsletters, you name it. That’s what I do. So I’m really excited to be here. Thank you.

Kyla Turner:

Good to have you and Lisa, tell us a little bit more about what you do in your role.

Lisa Hayden:

So in my role in addition to helping Jasmine with E360, I also oversee all of Extremes corporate social media handles, and I work with the field teams on their regional social handles. And I also work very closely with Jasmine on some communications initiatives around culture. We work a lot with our diversity and inclusion council to write external blog posts, featuring them and talking about the great things that we’re doing internally and to share those externally.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. So you both have the some of the internal and a lot of the culture. I love to hear that. So to introduce myself, my name is Kyla Turner. I am the strategic advisor for SocialChorus, and I love being here. And I love hearing these stories because in my background, as a communication professional, I was actually a customer of SocialChorus before joining the team. So when I was with Love’s Travel Stops, we also implemented a new platform, Loves Now, for our communications. And I got to see firsthand how it not only transformed our internal comms, but our entire culture as well, just as you’re going to hear today from Extreme Networks. I love sharing these stories and let’s go ahead and just get started. Oh, wait. Before we get started, do you have to give you a couple of housekeeping notes.

We would love to hear your questions. So if you would please put those in the chat, I’m going to be monitoring those. We also have some screenshots. I’m going to be jumping back and forth, but if I see some good questions in there and we come to a stopping point, I would love to stop and ask some questions as we go. If we don’t get to them, we will save some for the end and also do a Q&A then. Also, if you hear a great quote or a good example, you’re going to hear a lot of them feel free to post to your social media networks. It’s #tune2021. Okay. So let’s jump in and I love to start at the beginning and we say you were there kind of at the beginning, tell us the story of that moment when Extreme Networks knew their internal comms needed a new solution.

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah. So my first week was actually the first week where they launched E360 internally for all employees. And I remember being there and we were talking about why the company was investing in this. And it was because over the past several months before the launch of the internal app, they had run some testing on emails. They had put tags on the emails, going out to employees from the executives and all company-wide communications.

And the results were not, they were not good. And that did not make the communications team or the executives happy when they were hearing that only 20 to 30% of the employees were opening their emails. They were not happy because they know they were sending those emails because they applied to all employees company-wide. It was a communication that everyone needed to know and be engaged with. And the employees were just not opening it. They were getting too many emails, too many things were going out. Any emails that weren’t even just coming from the executive team, they were coming from different departments.

So they needed both a tool to help ensure those company-wide updates were seen. And then to cut down on the number of global emails that were just going around from different departments. So that’s when they looked at socialChorus and then we had a sales kickoff event and they decided to roll this tool out first to the sales and marketing teams, because at that point in time, our sales organization was the largest department at Extreme. So it made sense to get that buy-in from those two teams first, and then the adoption from there just grew once those two teams were active, engaged, we rolled it out to the subsequent departments.

And over the next two years, we really saw adoption increase. Jasmine will go into it later in the presentation, but that’s how we become more successful, just growing it into different departments with some structure behind it.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. And what a great process to start with sales and marketing and kind of get everyone engaged and then continue rolling out to your organization. It’s that good? It’s a good way to do it. And now let’s see, let’s jump into, it has now been a few years later and your program has definitely grown just as you’re talking, it’s matured, it’s transformed. In fact, let me share a screen because you have some amazing numbers here, but I want to make sure everyone sees. So this is where you are now. I mean, look at these numbers and it’s just been in a few years’ time. Right? So how is your program working now?

Lisa Hayden:

Now, I mean, if you look at these numbers, I just mentioned 20 to 30% of people were opening those company-wide emails. And now on a monthly basis, actually daily basis, daily and weekly, we’re seeing 90% of employees in the application. And then when we investigate those certain posts that are for company-wide updates. So we’re doing a post instead of an email, the engagement rate and open rates on those posts are phenomenal. They’re upwards of 70 and 80%. And for a company update where just five years ago, it was around 20 to 30%. It’s an extreme increase that our team is very happy that we’ve gotten those numbers up and they’ve seen it in the culture wise too. Our employees are more engaged because they are seeing the information they’re more engaged and they’re more effective because they have the tools that they need in front of them.

And one of the things that I will stop sharing this, I want to talk about your leadership because when we’ve talked before, we’ve really talked about how your leaders drove engagement. I always wonder, okay, those are incredible numbers. How did you get there? And was it a leadership push or was it you all just really doing some amazing content creation? What was the push that got you to these types of numbers?

So I think it was the leaders seeing those numbers originally, where it was very low from the number of employees company-wide opening those emails. Our E-team is competitive. They want people to be engaging with their content. They want to get the numbers up as high as possible. They’re just very driven to get the numbers through the roof. So they were very quick to help us. They’ve always been extremely supportive. I know Jasmine would say the same thing. And one thing that we do with them is that we’ve shown them that video sometimes works better with our employee base.

So the executives have all come on board and they will record selfie videos for us even if they’re on the road, they’re not in their home office, they’re traveling somewhere, they’ll pull out their phone in an airport or in an Uber and they’ll record a two minute update so that we can send that to employees rather than a one-page email to employees because it’s more engaging. And we see that our employees react better to it in that the number of video views is higher than email open rates.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah, I think, and we see a screen. Let me see, I have a screen for your leadership videos. I know this is something I had heard about E360 years ago, and this was one of the things that was really setting you apart is that your leadership was so engaged and that they didn’t mind doing these videos. And again, we’re showing some examples of your leadership and the videos that they do and the numbers are getting from it. How did they know to do this? Or how did you get them so involved that they felt comfortable enough to shoot some videos on? I know they were just doing it on the fly, like you said, in the back of Uber’s or at the airport, or how were you able to get them that level of comfort and that level of involvement?

Lisa Hayden:

I think it’s two parts, it’s one the data. So having the data to show, and then two it’s working with them. So we don’t write scripts for them. We’ll just send them a couple of bullet points. And once we send them the bullet points they might ask us a question if they just need to clarify something. And then once we have a quick conversation with them, they’ll go and record it. And we always tell them like, less keep it short because people don’t want to watch a video for longer than two or three minutes. So it just really working together to pinpoint them. And then once they’ve gotten more comfortable, now it’s really less involvement from the comms team. We just send them the ask and they’re able to do it since we’ve really honed in on showing them that data. And then how easy it can be to record them.

Kyla Turner:

So we already have a question coming in, and this is a good one. Vanessa asks are the executive videos reviewed before they’re released?

Jasmine Davis:

Absolutely. Of course, most of the time they’re making the videos but they do review them. And not only do we have the videos, but we also have it accompanied with a brief message as well. Because we’ve done some research internally. And though most of our employees enjoy the videos from our executive team. Some preferred the reading part as well, or you can just never know where they’ll be at the time and they might not be able to hear the video. But yes, to answer that question, they absolutely do review the videos as well as the brief messages. Like Lisa said, we just try to keep things very brief and succinct.

A couple of our core values is candor and transparency, which are my two favorite values at Extreme Networks. And each executive team member truly believes in that. And you can see that in some of what you’re seeing on the screen now. We’re constantly being told don’t be afraid to reach out to an E-team member because again, the transparency and the candor piece, but each of our executives have a very unique way that they do videos. Katy, our chief administrative and sustainability officer. She even hosts a weekly Katy’s corners series. So all of our E-team members are definitely on board with video, and it’s such a powerful tool that we definitely leverage at extreme.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. And I love, I feel like that’s where you get the flash when you get your leadership on camera and they’re talking and they’re using their own words, but I also want to go back to can one of you speak to, I know that having the data, the analytics and the insights was huge for your leaders as well. And that was another thing that pushed them to do these videos and get so involved. Can you speak to what you were able to show them with the data and how they use that?

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah, so with the data going back to different content types. We were just trying out all kinds of content types. In the beginning, we were doing long form articles, short form links. We were trying to link back to our internet site because our internet site is where we would host documents that would live for a long time. Any 360 was sort of the way where we would notify people of new updates and then they would click into that link and go to our internet page.

So we would try different content types. And then with the video, once we got that going, we just started looking at the data right away. And we were talking to our CEO. We were like, “Ed, this video got this many views compared to this email that we sent out last week.” And then just showing him that data. That really helped get him on board because he was probably hesitant at the beginning to do it because he was also very busy at the time. This is four or five years ago when there wasn’t a pandemic going on and there was traveling all the time. You’re on a different flight every other week, going to a new customer location or a new office to meet with employees.

So we also didn’t have a lot of time and to be on a call with someone, giving you bullet points that wasn’t always happening. It would most of the time be us sending him bullet points and maybe he was recording the video at nighttime. So it was really having to have those calls in advance and have like bi-weekly calls or monthly calls with the executive team when we were getting this, going to get them more comfortable at the beginning. So that now where we are today, it’s more mature and we don’t have to be that hands-on because now everyone’s on the same page with how it should operate.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. And we have a lot of good questions coming in about that. Sheena asks, are there any other ways that your executives engage besides video? These videos are great. How else do they engage?

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah, so they are also getting very heavily engaged. They’re going into the posts, they’re liking the posts, they’re commenting on employee submissions. So we get a lot of employees sharing things that are happening in their offices, or now when they’re working remotely, they’re sharing updates or screenshots of Zoom team meetings, and the executives will go on and they’ll comment on them, or we have a press release go out and they go in and they do comment there and tell employees why it’s so important. And they really go in, we have a shout outs channel actually that Jasmine launched as well. So the executives and any employees they’ll go to that shout outs channel, and then they will create one post and it shouts out a specific employee or team about a great accomplishment that they just had.

Kyla Turner:

Oh, that’s great to hear. I love to hear that they’re engaging in this way. And I’m glad you mentioned comments because there’s another leadership video question in here. Do you enable comments? Do you enable your employees to ask questions during these videos and either one of you can answer and was that hard for your leaders to wrap their heads around? I know that’s a question we get often is that can be scary. It’s just open it up for anyone to comment or ask. How did you handle that governance?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, so we definitely have the comments open. Again, we’re all about transparency and candor and we want to have people express themselves in the comment section. So it’s very rare that we ever turn off the comments for anything. We want people to share what their thoughts are and if they don’t want to share, that’s completely fine. But we do get a lot of engagement in the comment section and as Lisa said, it is it’s imperative that our E-team would show up on E360 in terms of utilizing the platform because that means like, hey, it’s not just the employees using it. It’s our E-team, our E-staff and using it as well. So comments are always encouraged and don’t be afraid to turn those things off. I’ll say that.

Kyla Turner:

I agree. I think that goes along with transparency. You’re right. Go ahead, Lisa.

Jasmine Davis:

I was going to say, I understand where those questions are coming from because we were hesitant. I was especially hesitant when we were first talking about opening up comments when SocialChorus first launched it because we were like, “We don’t know what people are going to say,” but then it came back to, transparency is one of our core values. We want to be transparent.

And then the other thing was another core value is ownership. So if an employee is going to write something on E360, their name is attached to that comment. So HR will see it right away if it’s not something appropriate. So that wasn’t something we were really too concerned about because we knew even if something went up, we would be able to take it down quickly and then report it if anything like that had happened. And that has never happened to us. So it was always just one of those concerns. It’s a possibility, but it’s never happened and we don’t think that it would happen.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. And I feel like tying it back to your core values is a great way to show the importance of your leaders kind of walking the talk and living out your core values. I see a question in here and it’s one that I remember getting at Loves. What if you don’t have an engaged set of leaders or if your highest executives aren’t engaged or don’t want to do videos, was there anything that you were doing to help pull them in or still get across the importance of that visibility?

Lisa Hayden:

I would say besides video we have our E360 first approach. So that goes back to getting more departments and more leaders on E360 originally. After the first year with the program, we came out with it in the comms team, as well as our CEO and our COO. We would go and say post it at E360. And we called it out at E360 first approach because we want employees to remember that news breaks first on E360. A company-wide update, a company video, it’s going to drop first on E360. And that’s the place that’s the central place for everyone to go to if you’re looking for timely information or a new announcement or update that has just come out.

So by doing that, we got into the executives minds that if they had an update that they wanted all employees to see or an entire department to see, they should post it at E360 first, whether or not it’s a video. Like our HR team, for example, they have a monthly newsletter that goes out that highlights all of the employees who have anniversaries that month. And they were originally just doing an outlook email and it would go out at different times of the month. It wasn’t on a regular cadence, but now we’re putting it in E360. It’s a new format that’s engaging for employees to click into. And then employees who are spotlighted that month, our head of HR also will ask them to tell their story.

So now included in that article update is a couple of different stories firsthand from the employees who were spotlighted that month. And it’s not an email, it’s still a text update, but it’s on the application and it’s easier to engage with. And then we can still include it in email newsletters that we send from the application.

Kyla Turner:

I love that. I love that E360 first approach in that priority. How did you get that across? I feel like that is always an initiative that we’re looking at as internal communicators of, we want our employees to hear at first and we want to have this information be a primary source. how did you get the entire company to adopt that principle in that priority?

Lisa Hayden:

So also during these past five years, Extreme has acquired four different companies in that same span. So it was really important before we went on this acquisition spree to get our employees who were at the legacy extreme company to really be full fledged advocates for the platform, because we were going to be bringing on thousands of new employees from these different organizations. And Jasmine can speak to this because she actually came from one of the acquired companies. When they come on board, things change, processes are new. It’s not the same as it was at the previous company because everything is changing in migrating to these new platforms.

So we really wanted our extreme employees to be advocates for the new employees coming on board so that when they asked the former extreme employees, how do I find this information? They had it in their minds, oh, E360 first. Go to E360 first. And this is where you’ll find information. And then if you don’t find it there, reach out to the comms team or reach out to HR to find that information.

And in addition to just using word of mouth and getting the executives to talk about it during company-wide all hands. we also had banners in the major office locations that would say E360 first, and we would have directions on how to download E360 and how to use it. And they were just big banners in the lunchroom.

So it was sort of everywhere you went, you saw both in the opposite. And then on our intranet site, we had ads for it. So people were seeing it everywhere. They went.

Kyla Turner:

That’s fantastic. And you’re proving my point that sometimes I feel like the old school ways of doing things, the banners, the posters are still effective once we’re all kind of getting back into the office.

Lisa Hayden:

It’s [inaudible 00:24:31] but then, yeah.

Kyla Turner:

I love all of those different ways. And Jasmine, I love that we’re talking now about reaching your employees and all the different ways that you’re doing it. So let’s talk about how you are connecting them to that information, the specific information they need to do their jobs and the information that they need. What are some of the things that you’ve started doing as you’ve kind of started leading this platform?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, sure. So when I first came on board and as Lisa said, I was a part of an acquisition. So the very first thing I saw when I went into the San Jose office was a banner for E360. And I was told that, “Hey, this is the platform that we use to communicate with our internal audiences. And this is what you’ll be helping them manage.” So I had to drink the Kool-Aid pretty quickly. One of my first tasks was to make sure that my teammates from my previous company were all onboarded. So as I was onboarding and learning more about the company, I had the task to make sure that my teammates from the previous company were onboarding seamlessly to Extreme Networks as well.

So one of the first things I took on at Extreme Networks was I studied the platform, saw the content type, saw what was the functionalities. And I saw that there was an email newsletter. So I started a weekly Roundup, which takes on the most important pieces of content during the week. And I put it all in one place in the weekly Roundup when we’d send those out every Friday. So it could be the breaking news, like Lisa mentioned, any kind of announcements any sales enablement tools, or it alerts new partnerships, customer wins. We just wrapped up a national pet day for some social advocacy. So people can kind of actually see those.

So the newsletter has been a big hit, and I do get emails from time to time from our employees that say, “Hey, this is very helpful. Sometimes I can’t get in the platform every day, but at least I know the top things that are going on around the company.” So it really warms my heart to know that people are engaged and that they feel a part in that they’re getting the most important information that they need also to as Lisa mentioned, we do use the E360 platform and I did see a question come in.

We use the mobile app as well as the desktop version. But we also use our intranet site called the source. And that is a SharePoint based platform. That’s where the content really lives. And we’ve actually added E360 amplifiers to the home page in the different departmental site. So we have specific channels that might… Yep, that’s it right there. So we might have different channels. So sales enablement on the source site, they’ll have their specific feed in there versus our executive corner, which I’ll have our executive channel feed.

So we break the news on E360, but if the content needs to live a lot longer, it’s on the source site. So what you’re seeing right now at the top left-hand corner is our E360 desktop. We just launched our quick links and they have been a huge game changer for us. So we are bringing more people into the platform, which is exactly what we want. So what we did was we pulled our employees, worked with it to see, which are the top places that our employees are going and how can we bring them into each E360?

So as you can see the top left-hand side, if you can see it, it’s the source again, that’s our intranet site. That’s where our content lives a lot longer than we have my app. So that’s your app directory. So people can actually click on that and go where they need to go. Spark is our sales enablement site. So sales team, we’re pulling them in there. And then at the very end. We change that on a weekly basis. So if there’s something like in a mandatory all-employee training, we’ll put that up there. Right now we’re running a company store sell. So that’s up there right now. We’re also going to be hosting a day of giving. So that last one, we use that to change out what’s going on around the company. So people can [crosstalk 00:28:55].

Kyla Turner:

I love the thought that you’re changing these out. We have so many customers who think you go with the four at the top and then they need to stay. And I know, and I like how you have three that do. And so you do kind of get that, that habit going, that behavior, but I like how you’re reserving one to switch out for whatever is going on and what you’re trying to direct your employees to do.

Jasmine Davis:

Absolutely. And as you can see, and just as an example, so the last one on the right is the company store sell right below that image on the right side, next to the lady. You can actually see the owner on our intranet homepage, the source, we have corporate store. So when they click on that and E360, it takes them to that homepage where they can then click and go where they need to go. So again, we’re trying to bring people to the platform and then have them go out wherever they need to go.

Another example of the feeds is actually in there as well. Katy, again she does a Katy’s Corner Series. So as you can see, that’s the feed that goes in there and the subsequent posts, and then over to the left is our Weekly Roundup newsletter. Again goes out every Friday to our global employee base. And we use a newsletter feature. We use the one where there’s like a featured post and then the subsequent post are right below that. So that’s just an example of us leveraging the newsletter. And right there, we were promoting our brand new office of the CTO podcasts. So that that’s how we keep our employees informed and engaged as much as possible.

Kyla Turner:

You’re doing quite a bit. I love this. And one of the things that we haven’t talked about yet is content bundling, which to me was a whole new turn. Tell me what you’re doing when you talk about content bundling.

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah. So it’s one of my personal favorites just because I live in the newsletter world. So for example, we just launched our major league baseball and Extreme Networks partnerships. So we worked with our marketing team to identify all the assets that they had available. That way we can ensure that our internal teams knew exactly what was going to come out before the press release, just making sure our internal teams were well-informed before the release goes out. So each post is culminated inside the newsletter. So one post would be the MLB Extreme Lockup as well as a video. Again, as you all know, by now, we love video at Extreme Networks. So on the left-hand side, you’d see our Chief Operating Officer, Norman Rice and our Chief Marketing Officer Wes Durow. They did a quick video, basically explaining more about the partnership, the intricacies and why we should all be excited for such a great team effort and accomplishment that we’re able to partner with the MLB.

So that is a content piece, email signatures, press release. Once that comes out, what we’re communicating to our partners and customer base, all of that is culminated into one newsletter. So it’s literally a one-stop shop where you can reference all the pieces of content and that’s how we bundle everything. So that is how we do that. And to get the word out there, of course we do emails, but we also leverage our mobile push notifications as well, which might bring them right back to whatever piece of content we want.

So the example up there at the right hand side, we were announcing our major league baseball partnership. So not only did we hit them up via email, we gave them a gentle mobile push notification. So they can directly view the video and see all and hear the excitement directly from Norman and Wes.

Kyla Turner:

I love this bundle. I love seeing this all because I think that everyone needs layers. That’s how you get a message to stick. And I think there’s so many good layers in here. So are you putting all of this within your platform? You have video, you have newsletter, you have press release, you have outreach via email plus the notification. So all of this lives within E360?

Jasmine Davis:

All of it lives via E360. And for this particular messaging we did because we do have partnerships, not only with the MLB, but the NFL, but we do have an extreme game day channel. So a lot of that content lived there, but we made it an auto follow channel. So all of our employees are accessing the content. And again, we do leverage our intranet site. So there is a dedicated site just for our MLB partnership. And they can reference all of the materials there as well. So each of those content pieces direct them right back to the internet site. Again, we break the news, give them everything, they could reference it on E360, but then if they need to really, really dig down and see the resource later on, then it’s definitely on the internet.

Kyla Turner:

I love hearing that. And this is something I have to ask you because I know you’re measuring all of these things and we sometimes see some trepidation from different companies of saying, we don’t want to send out too many push notifications. We don’t want to bother our employees. And I heard you refer to it as it’s a gentle notification. I will say one of the things we learned at Love’s was our employees wanted work push notifications, but it was actually something they asked for. They said, we’re going to miss it. We’re very busy doing our jobs. So they actually asked us to send out more so that they wouldn’t miss the big pieces that we were trying to push out. Do you see something similar? What is your insights in your reporting telling you on that?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, so we don’t over abuse the mobile push notification, and we have the same exact theory for emails as well. That’s why we always try to leverage or tell people like, “Hey, come to E360 check it two minutes a day.” You’ll get all the information that you need. So we do have people that definitely prefer email versus mobile. We have the metrics for that. Sometimes it’s a little bit, half and half on that, but we also just make sure the content shows up in different areas for them as well to leverage.

So again, on the intranet site, E360 push notifications. As Lisa mentioned, if it’s on a banker somewhere, we will do that too. And pre-pandemic, we were actually also leveraging Zoom as well to let people know what’s going on. But in terms of the yearn for mobile push notifications, I think we’re at a really good place where people aren’t feeling like they’re being bugged or being annoyed by them. But Lisa, if you have anything else to add.

Lisa Hayden:

No, I think you captured it perfectly. Jasmine. Another thing too with push notifications is that we do work with all of our program managers at extreme who are contributing content to E360 and we make sure that they sync with us before they schedule a push notification or something that way too many aren’t going out on the same day or at the same time. There’s some spacing between major posts like that.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. Now you have all this good news to share and you bundled it and put it together. So well, there’s a question that came in do you allow for sharing and social advocacy with your news? Is that a priority with the new platform?

Lisa Hayden:

Yes. So we do post all of our press releases, all of our blogs and any resources on our website to E360 and then we’ll also publish social campaigns and we’ll tweak them for employees to share, and we will schedule them to certain channels on E360 so that employees are able to go in and share, but not all content is shareable. Of course, like the selfie videos are internal only, but anything external, like a press release, we do make shareable and we include a default post if an employee would like to use that, or they’re always welcome to write their own social post as well.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. I have another question up here. It says, did you have trouble getting people to proactively contribute content? So now we’re talking about user generated content and are you allowing it, how much are you allowing and are you promoting it to come in and get that continuous content from your employees?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, yeah. Oh, I’ll take this one, Lisa, and then you can definitely add more color to that. So we do have content contributors for each channel and they help to generate our content for those different channels. Now, in terms of our end users, we did have people that were shy to share. Then you have people that are really, really excited to share. And we have been doing a lot of different campaigns internally not only to increase advocacy and kind of like that social hope we’ll get together filling now that we’re in the virtual world, but that has also helped to make people a little bit more comfortable to use the platform.

So for example, we did a throwback Thursday with sports like people were able to share their special sports photos. We gave them a prize each week for whoever submitted and that got people’s feet wet to use the image feature or to get in there and make a post.

So I feel like even though we had like an MO in terms of getting more engaged, I think it definitely helped people get their feet wet. So usually people, when they do it once they want to do it again and again and again. So that definitely helps to build the advocacy piece with getting people on board. Now we did just recently start E360 office hours throughout the month of April. And we do that just to make sure that our employees know that they have the opportunity to have one-on-one with myself or Lisa to go over the platform and to answer any questions that they might have in terms of usage. I get into usage and then of course my mind goes crazy and I’m like, “Well, what do you do?”

Well, then we’d start discussing content strategy so I can bring them back to the platform so they could share more about what they’ve got going on. We also host team Extreme EDU webinars, which each month we host a different webinar that covers a different department and each quarter Lisa and I and Lauren Peresada, she’s our account manager at SocialChorus. We host a webinars to let people know what’s the latest and greatest in the world of E360 in terms of maybe the image posts went from one to 10. So it’s kind of an Instagram feel as well as a quick link. So we definitely keep them abreast on what’s going on with E360 and Lisa I’ll let you add anything if you have anything else.

Lisa Hayden:

I was going to say another thing that we didn’t dive into yet was something that did help with increasing adoption early on. We used to do these analytics dashboards for our executive team and we would show them, because we would pull the data into E360 to see which employees are active. What department are they in? What type of jobs are they? Are they individual contributors managers or are they contractors?

And then from that data, we would present it to our CEO and our COO who really wanted to know they were very engaged and they would then use that in the executive meetings. And they’d be like, “Oh, this department is lower.” And then they would talk with that E-team member. And then it was that E-team member’s job to get their team more engaged. And then it would come from the top down that E-team member would then go and work with their vice presidents who would then cascade it down.

And they would encourage the VPs to go in there and publish because when you see your VPs and your direct managers in there, engaging with the platform and sharing updates, it makes you want to go in and share updates as well. So I think that is something that helped us out originally. But now I’m doing these campaigns like throwback Thursday, and we’re doing another one to celebrate Extreme’s 25th anniversary. We’re asking employees to share throwback photos from their time at Extreme. If there was an event they attended maybe last year or maybe it was 20 years ago and they have a photo of it, we want employees to share those fun photos from the past, and that’s going to be a new channel on E360 for employees to submit to.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. Yeah. So I like that you kind of brought us back to the data and to what your executives are really looking at. I like that kind of competitive piece they’ve got in there too about your whys. Why aren’t you up here at this level of contribution and engagement and really kind of looking at the different teams and departments for that too.

Lisa Hayden:

We could see you, one thing that the sales did specifically because sales has quotas, was that we took the data for sales employees specifically, and then compared it to the quota attainment for two quarters. And we saw that the employees that were meeting or exceeding their quotas were also the most engaged sales employees on a E360. So that helped a lot as well, because then that helped the sales team really get more of the sales employees, onboarded. And then it also translated to the other departments going back to what our CEO and COO always tell us the more engaged the employees are, the more effective they’re going to be. And we had that evidence with sales. So really convincing the other departments. We want you to be active on this because we want the employees to be more effective. We want them to be engaged.

Kyla Turner:

That’s really what it all comes down to. I’m so glad that you said that you kind of led us into this last slide. I know we’re in our last couple of minutes. In conclusion you all produce some really great takeaways for everyone in the audience. Anything else that you’d like to say as we wrap up? Anything else that we should walk away with? I love these conclusion pieces and these three takeaways.

Jasmine Davis:

So really quickly our CEO always tells us that data is the new currency and we use that to help advance our customers and partners in terms of leveraging their data. And we also use that same concept internally. So we have similar data points like everyone else, like country of origin, department who your manager is and who you report up to. And we use those different data pieces to target our audiences, as well as making sure we’re curating the content that really matters to them. So I would definitely say don’t be shy to leverage those data points and really read up and research where your employees are most interested, because I definitely will tell you that does tell a story. The data does tell a story and you can help to enhance that story with data.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah. So very last thing. I know we’re getting ready to go, but I had to pop up this last screen. As you say, if you’re looking at the data and you’re really providing the information that your employees need and want, and you’re meeting them where they are through all of your different the ways that you’re doing that, those were great examples and you’ve received a great response from it. So had to share this slide of that has to feel good. And I’m excited for where you’re going to take this next.

Jasmine Davis:

We are too. And it’s really great to hear from our employees. These are their words, not ours. So you can see for yourself the power of leveraging data to optimize your comms. And I wish everyone the best of luck that was on the call today with that.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah. Thank you so much. Yeah, go ahead, Lisa. [inaudible 00:45:12].

Lisa Hayden:

It’s definitely very important now in this remote world that we live in being able to connect with each other. So these campaigns we’re doing with throwback Thursday and just getting employees to submit what their work from home setup looks like. It really helps enhance that culture where you’re not able to do those large gatherings right now. So I don’t think it’s ever been more important to be able to have a tool, to communicate and help engage your employees.

Kyla Turner:

I agree. And it’s wonderful how you are really prioritizing your employees and their voices and amplifying those. So thank you so much. I know we’re at time. Thank you both for being here. I can’t wait to talk with you more about this and to our audience. Thank you so much for being engaged and being here for the past 45 minutes, we are going to provide a recording of this session and we’re going to follow up on your questions that we didn’t get to as well. But thank you all again. And let’s see, what do we have next? We have a quick 15 minute break and then we have our afternoon keynote coming up to you. So thanks for being with us today. And we will see you all soon.

 

Video Transcript

Kyla Turner:

So I think it’s about that time. I think let’s go ahead and kick it off. All right. Well, welcome to our session. New ways to amplify engagement with Extreme Networks. And sorry, I can’t help it. I have to tell you we’re going to be taking it to the extreme and I am super excited because no one I’ve seen in recent times has optimized their communications and amplified their engagement better than Extreme Networks and their E360 program.

Leaders are brought in, their employees are engaged and they’re hungry for more. And they are reaching nearly everyone in their organization. They are on fire and they have two outstanding comms professionals leading the way. They have the vision. They have the discipline. They know how to get people on board to fulfill their mission.

So I’m very excited to welcome Jasmine Davis and Lisa Hayden to the program. So thank you all for being here. And I know we were going to try to get through the intros very quickly because you have such great examples and a great story to share with us today. So let’s go ahead and start. And can you tell everyone who may not be familiar with Extreme Networks a little bit about the company and what you do?

Lisa Hayden:

So thanks for having us today, Kyla, and to SocialChorus, we’re very excited to be here today. So my name is Lisa and I am the social media manager at Extreme. An Extreme Networks is a networking company. We are actually heavily involved in cloud networking right now. So networking for those of you who might not be familiar, you want to think about the WiFi you have in your homes. We sell that same technology to businesses and to enterprises. We deal with fortune 500 companies, schools, universities, hospitals, as well as stadiums and sports venues. We’re the official WiFi solutions provider of both the NFL and the MLB. So we do work with very large clients who need to provide that same type of networking experience you have in your home at the enterprise level.

We are a global company. We have over 3000 employees and contractors around the globe and we’ve been in business for over 25 years now. And E360 has really helped us to reach all of those employees and contractors globally. And I’ll turn it over to Jasmine to introduce herself as well. The second half of the comms team here for E360.

Jasmine Davis:

Thank you, Lisa. And thank you, Kyla and SocialChorus for the opportunity and the space to share Extreme’s comm story. We’re really excited to be here. So my role under the corporate comms umbrella as internal communications manager is to keep our 3000 plus global employees informed with all the latest and greatest happenings from around the company. And to ensure that our employees are engaged, they’re our advocates and making sure that we enhance our company culture and keeping that top of mind.

And we’re able to achieve this by partnering with members of our executive team and various departments from around the company using our internal app, which we affectionately called E360, but it’s Extreme 360, the longer version. And like Lisa said, I helped to co-manage the application, as well as our internal intranet site, the source. I also host and manage a lot of our internal events like employee town halls, department all hands, educational webinars, newsletters, you name it. That’s what I do. So I’m really excited to be here. Thank you.

Kyla Turner:

Good to have you and Lisa, tell us a little bit more about what you do in your role.

Lisa Hayden:

So in my role in addition to helping Jasmine with E360, I also oversee all of Extremes corporate social media handles, and I work with the field teams on their regional social handles. And I also work very closely with Jasmine on some communications initiatives around culture. We work a lot with our diversity and inclusion council to write external blog posts, featuring them and talking about the great things that we’re doing internally and to share those externally.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. So you both have the some of the internal and a lot of the culture. I love to hear that. So to introduce myself, my name is Kyla Turner. I am the strategic advisor for SocialChorus, and I love being here. And I love hearing these stories because in my background, as a communication professional, I was actually a customer of SocialChorus before joining the team. So when I was with Love’s Travel Stops, we also implemented a new platform, Loves Now, for our communications. And I got to see firsthand how it not only transformed our internal comms, but our entire culture as well, just as you’re going to hear today from Extreme Networks. I love sharing these stories and let’s go ahead and just get started. Oh, wait. Before we get started, do you have to give you a couple of housekeeping notes.

We would love to hear your questions. So if you would please put those in the chat, I’m going to be monitoring those. We also have some screenshots. I’m going to be jumping back and forth, but if I see some good questions in there and we come to a stopping point, I would love to stop and ask some questions as we go. If we don’t get to them, we will save some for the end and also do a Q&A then. Also, if you hear a great quote or a good example, you’re going to hear a lot of them feel free to post to your social media networks. It’s #tune2021. Okay. So let’s jump in and I love to start at the beginning and we say you were there kind of at the beginning, tell us the story of that moment when Extreme Networks knew their internal comms needed a new solution.

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah. So my first week was actually the first week where they launched E360 internally for all employees. And I remember being there and we were talking about why the company was investing in this. And it was because over the past several months before the launch of the internal app, they had run some testing on emails. They had put tags on the emails, going out to employees from the executives and all company-wide communications.

And the results were not, they were not good. And that did not make the communications team or the executives happy when they were hearing that only 20 to 30% of the employees were opening their emails. They were not happy because they know they were sending those emails because they applied to all employees company-wide. It was a communication that everyone needed to know and be engaged with. And the employees were just not opening it. They were getting too many emails, too many things were going out. Any emails that weren’t even just coming from the executive team, they were coming from different departments.

So they needed both a tool to help ensure those company-wide updates were seen. And then to cut down on the number of global emails that were just going around from different departments. So that’s when they looked at socialChorus and then we had a sales kickoff event and they decided to roll this tool out first to the sales and marketing teams, because at that point in time, our sales organization was the largest department at Extreme. So it made sense to get that buy-in from those two teams first, and then the adoption from there just grew once those two teams were active, engaged, we rolled it out to the subsequent departments.

And over the next two years, we really saw adoption increase. Jasmine will go into it later in the presentation, but that’s how we become more successful, just growing it into different departments with some structure behind it.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. And what a great process to start with sales and marketing and kind of get everyone engaged and then continue rolling out to your organization. It’s that good? It’s a good way to do it. And now let’s see, let’s jump into, it has now been a few years later and your program has definitely grown just as you’re talking, it’s matured, it’s transformed. In fact, let me share a screen because you have some amazing numbers here, but I want to make sure everyone sees. So this is where you are now. I mean, look at these numbers and it’s just been in a few years’ time. Right? So how is your program working now?

Lisa Hayden:

Now, I mean, if you look at these numbers, I just mentioned 20 to 30% of people were opening those company-wide emails. And now on a monthly basis, actually daily basis, daily and weekly, we’re seeing 90% of employees in the application. And then when we investigate those certain posts that are for company-wide updates. So we’re doing a post instead of an email, the engagement rate and open rates on those posts are phenomenal. They’re upwards of 70 and 80%. And for a company update where just five years ago, it was around 20 to 30%. It’s an extreme increase that our team is very happy that we’ve gotten those numbers up and they’ve seen it in the culture wise too. Our employees are more engaged because they are seeing the information they’re more engaged and they’re more effective because they have the tools that they need in front of them.

And one of the things that I will stop sharing this, I want to talk about your leadership because when we’ve talked before, we’ve really talked about how your leaders drove engagement. I always wonder, okay, those are incredible numbers. How did you get there? And was it a leadership push or was it you all just really doing some amazing content creation? What was the push that got you to these types of numbers?

So I think it was the leaders seeing those numbers originally, where it was very low from the number of employees company-wide opening those emails. Our E-team is competitive. They want people to be engaging with their content. They want to get the numbers up as high as possible. They’re just very driven to get the numbers through the roof. So they were very quick to help us. They’ve always been extremely supportive. I know Jasmine would say the same thing. And one thing that we do with them is that we’ve shown them that video sometimes works better with our employee base.

So the executives have all come on board and they will record selfie videos for us even if they’re on the road, they’re not in their home office, they’re traveling somewhere, they’ll pull out their phone in an airport or in an Uber and they’ll record a two minute update so that we can send that to employees rather than a one-page email to employees because it’s more engaging. And we see that our employees react better to it in that the number of video views is higher than email open rates.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah, I think, and we see a screen. Let me see, I have a screen for your leadership videos. I know this is something I had heard about E360 years ago, and this was one of the things that was really setting you apart is that your leadership was so engaged and that they didn’t mind doing these videos. And again, we’re showing some examples of your leadership and the videos that they do and the numbers are getting from it. How did they know to do this? Or how did you get them so involved that they felt comfortable enough to shoot some videos on? I know they were just doing it on the fly, like you said, in the back of Uber’s or at the airport, or how were you able to get them that level of comfort and that level of involvement?

Lisa Hayden:

I think it’s two parts, it’s one the data. So having the data to show, and then two it’s working with them. So we don’t write scripts for them. We’ll just send them a couple of bullet points. And once we send them the bullet points they might ask us a question if they just need to clarify something. And then once we have a quick conversation with them, they’ll go and record it. And we always tell them like, less keep it short because people don’t want to watch a video for longer than two or three minutes. So it just really working together to pinpoint them. And then once they’ve gotten more comfortable, now it’s really less involvement from the comms team. We just send them the ask and they’re able to do it since we’ve really honed in on showing them that data. And then how easy it can be to record them.

Kyla Turner:

So we already have a question coming in, and this is a good one. Vanessa asks are the executive videos reviewed before they’re released?

Jasmine Davis:

Absolutely. Of course, most of the time they’re making the videos but they do review them. And not only do we have the videos, but we also have it accompanied with a brief message as well. Because we’ve done some research internally. And though most of our employees enjoy the videos from our executive team. Some preferred the reading part as well, or you can just never know where they’ll be at the time and they might not be able to hear the video. But yes, to answer that question, they absolutely do review the videos as well as the brief messages. Like Lisa said, we just try to keep things very brief and succinct.

A couple of our core values is candor and transparency, which are my two favorite values at Extreme Networks. And each executive team member truly believes in that. And you can see that in some of what you’re seeing on the screen now. We’re constantly being told don’t be afraid to reach out to an E-team member because again, the transparency and the candor piece, but each of our executives have a very unique way that they do videos. Katy, our chief administrative and sustainability officer. She even hosts a weekly Katy’s corners series. So all of our E-team members are definitely on board with video, and it’s such a powerful tool that we definitely leverage at extreme.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. And I love, I feel like that’s where you get the flash when you get your leadership on camera and they’re talking and they’re using their own words, but I also want to go back to can one of you speak to, I know that having the data, the analytics and the insights was huge for your leaders as well. And that was another thing that pushed them to do these videos and get so involved. Can you speak to what you were able to show them with the data and how they use that?

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah, so with the data going back to different content types. We were just trying out all kinds of content types. In the beginning, we were doing long form articles, short form links. We were trying to link back to our internet site because our internet site is where we would host documents that would live for a long time. Any 360 was sort of the way where we would notify people of new updates and then they would click into that link and go to our internet page.

So we would try different content types. And then with the video, once we got that going, we just started looking at the data right away. And we were talking to our CEO. We were like, “Ed, this video got this many views compared to this email that we sent out last week.” And then just showing him that data. That really helped get him on board because he was probably hesitant at the beginning to do it because he was also very busy at the time. This is four or five years ago when there wasn’t a pandemic going on and there was traveling all the time. You’re on a different flight every other week, going to a new customer location or a new office to meet with employees.

So we also didn’t have a lot of time and to be on a call with someone, giving you bullet points that wasn’t always happening. It would most of the time be us sending him bullet points and maybe he was recording the video at nighttime. So it was really having to have those calls in advance and have like bi-weekly calls or monthly calls with the executive team when we were getting this, going to get them more comfortable at the beginning. So that now where we are today, it’s more mature and we don’t have to be that hands-on because now everyone’s on the same page with how it should operate.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. And we have a lot of good questions coming in about that. Sheena asks, are there any other ways that your executives engage besides video? These videos are great. How else do they engage?

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah, so they are also getting very heavily engaged. They’re going into the posts, they’re liking the posts, they’re commenting on employee submissions. So we get a lot of employees sharing things that are happening in their offices, or now when they’re working remotely, they’re sharing updates or screenshots of Zoom team meetings, and the executives will go on and they’ll comment on them, or we have a press release go out and they go in and they do comment there and tell employees why it’s so important. And they really go in, we have a shout outs channel actually that Jasmine launched as well. So the executives and any employees they’ll go to that shout outs channel, and then they will create one post and it shouts out a specific employee or team about a great accomplishment that they just had.

Kyla Turner:

Oh, that’s great to hear. I love to hear that they’re engaging in this way. And I’m glad you mentioned comments because there’s another leadership video question in here. Do you enable comments? Do you enable your employees to ask questions during these videos and either one of you can answer and was that hard for your leaders to wrap their heads around? I know that’s a question we get often is that can be scary. It’s just open it up for anyone to comment or ask. How did you handle that governance?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, so we definitely have the comments open. Again, we’re all about transparency and candor and we want to have people express themselves in the comment section. So it’s very rare that we ever turn off the comments for anything. We want people to share what their thoughts are and if they don’t want to share, that’s completely fine. But we do get a lot of engagement in the comment section and as Lisa said, it is it’s imperative that our E-team would show up on E360 in terms of utilizing the platform because that means like, hey, it’s not just the employees using it. It’s our E-team, our E-staff and using it as well. So comments are always encouraged and don’t be afraid to turn those things off. I’ll say that.

Kyla Turner:

I agree. I think that goes along with transparency. You’re right. Go ahead, Lisa.

Jasmine Davis:

I was going to say, I understand where those questions are coming from because we were hesitant. I was especially hesitant when we were first talking about opening up comments when SocialChorus first launched it because we were like, “We don’t know what people are going to say,” but then it came back to, transparency is one of our core values. We want to be transparent.

And then the other thing was another core value is ownership. So if an employee is going to write something on E360, their name is attached to that comment. So HR will see it right away if it’s not something appropriate. So that wasn’t something we were really too concerned about because we knew even if something went up, we would be able to take it down quickly and then report it if anything like that had happened. And that has never happened to us. So it was always just one of those concerns. It’s a possibility, but it’s never happened and we don’t think that it would happen.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. And I feel like tying it back to your core values is a great way to show the importance of your leaders kind of walking the talk and living out your core values. I see a question in here and it’s one that I remember getting at Loves. What if you don’t have an engaged set of leaders or if your highest executives aren’t engaged or don’t want to do videos, was there anything that you were doing to help pull them in or still get across the importance of that visibility?

Lisa Hayden:

I would say besides video we have our E360 first approach. So that goes back to getting more departments and more leaders on E360 originally. After the first year with the program, we came out with it in the comms team, as well as our CEO and our COO. We would go and say post it at E360. And we called it out at E360 first approach because we want employees to remember that news breaks first on E360. A company-wide update, a company video, it’s going to drop first on E360. And that’s the place that’s the central place for everyone to go to if you’re looking for timely information or a new announcement or update that has just come out.

So by doing that, we got into the executives minds that if they had an update that they wanted all employees to see or an entire department to see, they should post it at E360 first, whether or not it’s a video. Like our HR team, for example, they have a monthly newsletter that goes out that highlights all of the employees who have anniversaries that month. And they were originally just doing an outlook email and it would go out at different times of the month. It wasn’t on a regular cadence, but now we’re putting it in E360. It’s a new format that’s engaging for employees to click into. And then employees who are spotlighted that month, our head of HR also will ask them to tell their story.

So now included in that article update is a couple of different stories firsthand from the employees who were spotlighted that month. And it’s not an email, it’s still a text update, but it’s on the application and it’s easier to engage with. And then we can still include it in email newsletters that we send from the application.

Kyla Turner:

I love that. I love that E360 first approach in that priority. How did you get that across? I feel like that is always an initiative that we’re looking at as internal communicators of, we want our employees to hear at first and we want to have this information be a primary source. how did you get the entire company to adopt that principle in that priority?

Lisa Hayden:

So also during these past five years, Extreme has acquired four different companies in that same span. So it was really important before we went on this acquisition spree to get our employees who were at the legacy extreme company to really be full fledged advocates for the platform, because we were going to be bringing on thousands of new employees from these different organizations. And Jasmine can speak to this because she actually came from one of the acquired companies. When they come on board, things change, processes are new. It’s not the same as it was at the previous company because everything is changing in migrating to these new platforms.

So we really wanted our extreme employees to be advocates for the new employees coming on board so that when they asked the former extreme employees, how do I find this information? They had it in their minds, oh, E360 first. Go to E360 first. And this is where you’ll find information. And then if you don’t find it there, reach out to the comms team or reach out to HR to find that information.

And in addition to just using word of mouth and getting the executives to talk about it during company-wide all hands. we also had banners in the major office locations that would say E360 first, and we would have directions on how to download E360 and how to use it. And they were just big banners in the lunchroom.

So it was sort of everywhere you went, you saw both in the opposite. And then on our intranet site, we had ads for it. So people were seeing it everywhere. They went.

Kyla Turner:

That’s fantastic. And you’re proving my point that sometimes I feel like the old school ways of doing things, the banners, the posters are still effective once we’re all kind of getting back into the office.

Lisa Hayden:

It’s [inaudible 00:24:31] but then, yeah.

Kyla Turner:

I love all of those different ways. And Jasmine, I love that we’re talking now about reaching your employees and all the different ways that you’re doing it. So let’s talk about how you are connecting them to that information, the specific information they need to do their jobs and the information that they need. What are some of the things that you’ve started doing as you’ve kind of started leading this platform?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, sure. So when I first came on board and as Lisa said, I was a part of an acquisition. So the very first thing I saw when I went into the San Jose office was a banner for E360. And I was told that, “Hey, this is the platform that we use to communicate with our internal audiences. And this is what you’ll be helping them manage.” So I had to drink the Kool-Aid pretty quickly. One of my first tasks was to make sure that my teammates from my previous company were all onboarded. So as I was onboarding and learning more about the company, I had the task to make sure that my teammates from the previous company were onboarding seamlessly to Extreme Networks as well.

So one of the first things I took on at Extreme Networks was I studied the platform, saw the content type, saw what was the functionalities. And I saw that there was an email newsletter. So I started a weekly Roundup, which takes on the most important pieces of content during the week. And I put it all in one place in the weekly Roundup when we’d send those out every Friday. So it could be the breaking news, like Lisa mentioned, any kind of announcements any sales enablement tools, or it alerts new partnerships, customer wins. We just wrapped up a national pet day for some social advocacy. So people can kind of actually see those.

So the newsletter has been a big hit, and I do get emails from time to time from our employees that say, “Hey, this is very helpful. Sometimes I can’t get in the platform every day, but at least I know the top things that are going on around the company.” So it really warms my heart to know that people are engaged and that they feel a part in that they’re getting the most important information that they need also to as Lisa mentioned, we do use the E360 platform and I did see a question come in.

We use the mobile app as well as the desktop version. But we also use our intranet site called the source. And that is a SharePoint based platform. That’s where the content really lives. And we’ve actually added E360 amplifiers to the home page in the different departmental site. So we have specific channels that might… Yep, that’s it right there. So we might have different channels. So sales enablement on the source site, they’ll have their specific feed in there versus our executive corner, which I’ll have our executive channel feed.

So we break the news on E360, but if the content needs to live a lot longer, it’s on the source site. So what you’re seeing right now at the top left-hand corner is our E360 desktop. We just launched our quick links and they have been a huge game changer for us. So we are bringing more people into the platform, which is exactly what we want. So what we did was we pulled our employees, worked with it to see, which are the top places that our employees are going and how can we bring them into each E360?

So as you can see the top left-hand side, if you can see it, it’s the source again, that’s our intranet site. That’s where our content lives a lot longer than we have my app. So that’s your app directory. So people can actually click on that and go where they need to go. Spark is our sales enablement site. So sales team, we’re pulling them in there. And then at the very end. We change that on a weekly basis. So if there’s something like in a mandatory all-employee training, we’ll put that up there. Right now we’re running a company store sell. So that’s up there right now. We’re also going to be hosting a day of giving. So that last one, we use that to change out what’s going on around the company. So people can [crosstalk 00:28:55].

Kyla Turner:

I love the thought that you’re changing these out. We have so many customers who think you go with the four at the top and then they need to stay. And I know, and I like how you have three that do. And so you do kind of get that, that habit going, that behavior, but I like how you’re reserving one to switch out for whatever is going on and what you’re trying to direct your employees to do.

Jasmine Davis:

Absolutely. And as you can see, and just as an example, so the last one on the right is the company store sell right below that image on the right side, next to the lady. You can actually see the owner on our intranet homepage, the source, we have corporate store. So when they click on that and E360, it takes them to that homepage where they can then click and go where they need to go. So again, we’re trying to bring people to the platform and then have them go out wherever they need to go.

Another example of the feeds is actually in there as well. Katy, again she does a Katy’s Corner Series. So as you can see, that’s the feed that goes in there and the subsequent posts, and then over to the left is our Weekly Roundup newsletter. Again goes out every Friday to our global employee base. And we use a newsletter feature. We use the one where there’s like a featured post and then the subsequent post are right below that. So that’s just an example of us leveraging the newsletter. And right there, we were promoting our brand new office of the CTO podcasts. So that that’s how we keep our employees informed and engaged as much as possible.

Kyla Turner:

You’re doing quite a bit. I love this. And one of the things that we haven’t talked about yet is content bundling, which to me was a whole new turn. Tell me what you’re doing when you talk about content bundling.

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah. So it’s one of my personal favorites just because I live in the newsletter world. So for example, we just launched our major league baseball and Extreme Networks partnerships. So we worked with our marketing team to identify all the assets that they had available. That way we can ensure that our internal teams knew exactly what was going to come out before the press release, just making sure our internal teams were well-informed before the release goes out. So each post is culminated inside the newsletter. So one post would be the MLB Extreme Lockup as well as a video. Again, as you all know, by now, we love video at Extreme Networks. So on the left-hand side, you’d see our Chief Operating Officer, Norman Rice and our Chief Marketing Officer Wes Durow. They did a quick video, basically explaining more about the partnership, the intricacies and why we should all be excited for such a great team effort and accomplishment that we’re able to partner with the MLB.

So that is a content piece, email signatures, press release. Once that comes out, what we’re communicating to our partners and customer base, all of that is culminated into one newsletter. So it’s literally a one-stop shop where you can reference all the pieces of content and that’s how we bundle everything. So that is how we do that. And to get the word out there, of course we do emails, but we also leverage our mobile push notifications as well, which might bring them right back to whatever piece of content we want.

So the example up there at the right hand side, we were announcing our major league baseball partnership. So not only did we hit them up via email, we gave them a gentle mobile push notification. So they can directly view the video and see all and hear the excitement directly from Norman and Wes.

Kyla Turner:

I love this bundle. I love seeing this all because I think that everyone needs layers. That’s how you get a message to stick. And I think there’s so many good layers in here. So are you putting all of this within your platform? You have video, you have newsletter, you have press release, you have outreach via email plus the notification. So all of this lives within E360?

Jasmine Davis:

All of it lives via E360. And for this particular messaging we did because we do have partnerships, not only with the MLB, but the NFL, but we do have an extreme game day channel. So a lot of that content lived there, but we made it an auto follow channel. So all of our employees are accessing the content. And again, we do leverage our intranet site. So there is a dedicated site just for our MLB partnership. And they can reference all of the materials there as well. So each of those content pieces direct them right back to the internet site. Again, we break the news, give them everything, they could reference it on E360, but then if they need to really, really dig down and see the resource later on, then it’s definitely on the internet.

Kyla Turner:

I love hearing that. And this is something I have to ask you because I know you’re measuring all of these things and we sometimes see some trepidation from different companies of saying, we don’t want to send out too many push notifications. We don’t want to bother our employees. And I heard you refer to it as it’s a gentle notification. I will say one of the things we learned at Love’s was our employees wanted work push notifications, but it was actually something they asked for. They said, we’re going to miss it. We’re very busy doing our jobs. So they actually asked us to send out more so that they wouldn’t miss the big pieces that we were trying to push out. Do you see something similar? What is your insights in your reporting telling you on that?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, so we don’t over abuse the mobile push notification, and we have the same exact theory for emails as well. That’s why we always try to leverage or tell people like, “Hey, come to E360 check it two minutes a day.” You’ll get all the information that you need. So we do have people that definitely prefer email versus mobile. We have the metrics for that. Sometimes it’s a little bit, half and half on that, but we also just make sure the content shows up in different areas for them as well to leverage.

So again, on the intranet site, E360 push notifications. As Lisa mentioned, if it’s on a banker somewhere, we will do that too. And pre-pandemic, we were actually also leveraging Zoom as well to let people know what’s going on. But in terms of the yearn for mobile push notifications, I think we’re at a really good place where people aren’t feeling like they’re being bugged or being annoyed by them. But Lisa, if you have anything else to add.

Lisa Hayden:

No, I think you captured it perfectly. Jasmine. Another thing too with push notifications is that we do work with all of our program managers at extreme who are contributing content to E360 and we make sure that they sync with us before they schedule a push notification or something that way too many aren’t going out on the same day or at the same time. There’s some spacing between major posts like that.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. Now you have all this good news to share and you bundled it and put it together. So well, there’s a question that came in do you allow for sharing and social advocacy with your news? Is that a priority with the new platform?

Lisa Hayden:

Yes. So we do post all of our press releases, all of our blogs and any resources on our website to E360 and then we’ll also publish social campaigns and we’ll tweak them for employees to share, and we will schedule them to certain channels on E360 so that employees are able to go in and share, but not all content is shareable. Of course, like the selfie videos are internal only, but anything external, like a press release, we do make shareable and we include a default post if an employee would like to use that, or they’re always welcome to write their own social post as well.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. I have another question up here. It says, did you have trouble getting people to proactively contribute content? So now we’re talking about user generated content and are you allowing it, how much are you allowing and are you promoting it to come in and get that continuous content from your employees?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, yeah. Oh, I’ll take this one, Lisa, and then you can definitely add more color to that. So we do have content contributors for each channel and they help to generate our content for those different channels. Now, in terms of our end users, we did have people that were shy to share. Then you have people that are really, really excited to share. And we have been doing a lot of different campaigns internally not only to increase advocacy and kind of like that social hope we’ll get together filling now that we’re in the virtual world, but that has also helped to make people a little bit more comfortable to use the platform.

So for example, we did a throwback Thursday with sports like people were able to share their special sports photos. We gave them a prize each week for whoever submitted and that got people’s feet wet to use the image feature or to get in there and make a post.

So I feel like even though we had like an MO in terms of getting more engaged, I think it definitely helped people get their feet wet. So usually people, when they do it once they want to do it again and again and again. So that definitely helps to build the advocacy piece with getting people on board. Now we did just recently start E360 office hours throughout the month of April. And we do that just to make sure that our employees know that they have the opportunity to have one-on-one with myself or Lisa to go over the platform and to answer any questions that they might have in terms of usage. I get into usage and then of course my mind goes crazy and I’m like, “Well, what do you do?”

Well, then we’d start discussing content strategy so I can bring them back to the platform so they could share more about what they’ve got going on. We also host team Extreme EDU webinars, which each month we host a different webinar that covers a different department and each quarter Lisa and I and Lauren Peresada, she’s our account manager at SocialChorus. We host a webinars to let people know what’s the latest and greatest in the world of E360 in terms of maybe the image posts went from one to 10. So it’s kind of an Instagram feel as well as a quick link. So we definitely keep them abreast on what’s going on with E360 and Lisa I’ll let you add anything if you have anything else.

Lisa Hayden:

I was going to say another thing that we didn’t dive into yet was something that did help with increasing adoption early on. We used to do these analytics dashboards for our executive team and we would show them, because we would pull the data into E360 to see which employees are active. What department are they in? What type of jobs are they? Are they individual contributors managers or are they contractors?

And then from that data, we would present it to our CEO and our COO who really wanted to know they were very engaged and they would then use that in the executive meetings. And they’d be like, “Oh, this department is lower.” And then they would talk with that E-team member. And then it was that E-team member’s job to get their team more engaged. And then it would come from the top down that E-team member would then go and work with their vice presidents who would then cascade it down.

And they would encourage the VPs to go in there and publish because when you see your VPs and your direct managers in there, engaging with the platform and sharing updates, it makes you want to go in and share updates as well. So I think that is something that helped us out originally. But now I’m doing these campaigns like throwback Thursday, and we’re doing another one to celebrate Extreme’s 25th anniversary. We’re asking employees to share throwback photos from their time at Extreme. If there was an event they attended maybe last year or maybe it was 20 years ago and they have a photo of it, we want employees to share those fun photos from the past, and that’s going to be a new channel on E360 for employees to submit to.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. Yeah. So I like that you kind of brought us back to the data and to what your executives are really looking at. I like that kind of competitive piece they’ve got in there too about your whys. Why aren’t you up here at this level of contribution and engagement and really kind of looking at the different teams and departments for that too.

Lisa Hayden:

We could see you, one thing that the sales did specifically because sales has quotas, was that we took the data for sales employees specifically, and then compared it to the quota attainment for two quarters. And we saw that the employees that were meeting or exceeding their quotas were also the most engaged sales employees on a E360. So that helped a lot as well, because then that helped the sales team really get more of the sales employees, onboarded. And then it also translated to the other departments going back to what our CEO and COO always tell us the more engaged the employees are, the more effective they’re going to be. And we had that evidence with sales. So really convincing the other departments. We want you to be active on this because we want the employees to be more effective. We want them to be engaged.

Kyla Turner:

That’s really what it all comes down to. I’m so glad that you said that you kind of led us into this last slide. I know we’re in our last couple of minutes. In conclusion you all produce some really great takeaways for everyone in the audience. Anything else that you’d like to say as we wrap up? Anything else that we should walk away with? I love these conclusion pieces and these three takeaways.

Jasmine Davis:

So really quickly our CEO always tells us that data is the new currency and we use that to help advance our customers and partners in terms of leveraging their data. And we also use that same concept internally. So we have similar data points like everyone else, like country of origin, department who your manager is and who you report up to. And we use those different data pieces to target our audiences, as well as making sure we’re curating the content that really matters to them. So I would definitely say don’t be shy to leverage those data points and really read up and research where your employees are most interested, because I definitely will tell you that does tell a story. The data does tell a story and you can help to enhance that story with data.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah. So very last thing. I know we’re getting ready to go, but I had to pop up this last screen. As you say, if you’re looking at the data and you’re really providing the information that your employees need and want, and you’re meeting them where they are through all of your different the ways that you’re doing that, those were great examples and you’ve received a great response from it. So had to share this slide of that has to feel good. And I’m excited for where you’re going to take this next.

Jasmine Davis:

We are too. And it’s really great to hear from our employees. These are their words, not ours. So you can see for yourself the power of leveraging data to optimize your comms. And I wish everyone the best of luck that was on the call today with that.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah. Thank you so much. Yeah, go ahead, Lisa. [inaudible 00:45:12].

Lisa Hayden:

It’s definitely very important now in this remote world that we live in being able to connect with each other. So these campaigns we’re doing with throwback Thursday and just getting employees to submit what their work from home setup looks like. It really helps enhance that culture where you’re not able to do those large gatherings right now. So I don’t think it’s ever been more important to be able to have a tool, to communicate and help engage your employees.

Kyla Turner:

I agree. And it’s wonderful how you are really prioritizing your employees and their voices and amplifying those. So thank you so much. I know we’re at time. Thank you both for being here. I can’t wait to talk with you more about this and to our audience. Thank you so much for being engaged and being here for the past 45 minutes, we are going to provide a recording of this session and we’re going to follow up on your questions that we didn’t get to as well. But thank you all again. And let’s see, what do we have next? We have a quick 15 minute break and then we have our afternoon keynote coming up to you. So thanks for being with us today. And we will see you all soon.

 

Expand Transcript

Video Transcript

Kyla Turner:

So I think it’s about that time. I think let’s go ahead and kick it off. All right. Well, welcome to our session. New ways to amplify engagement with Extreme Networks. And sorry, I can’t help it. I have to tell you we’re going to be taking it to the extreme and I am super excited because no one I’ve seen in recent times has optimized their communications and amplified their engagement better than Extreme Networks and their E360 program.

Leaders are brought in, their employees are engaged and they’re hungry for more. And they are reaching nearly everyone in their organization. They are on fire and they have two outstanding comms professionals leading the way. They have the vision. They have the discipline. They know how to get people on board to fulfill their mission.

So I’m very excited to welcome Jasmine Davis and Lisa Hayden to the program. So thank you all for being here. And I know we were going to try to get through the intros very quickly because you have such great examples and a great story to share with us today. So let’s go ahead and start. And can you tell everyone who may not be familiar with Extreme Networks a little bit about the company and what you do?

Lisa Hayden:

So thanks for having us today, Kyla, and to SocialChorus, we’re very excited to be here today. So my name is Lisa and I am the social media manager at Extreme. An Extreme Networks is a networking company. We are actually heavily involved in cloud networking right now. So networking for those of you who might not be familiar, you want to think about the WiFi you have in your homes. We sell that same technology to businesses and to enterprises. We deal with fortune 500 companies, schools, universities, hospitals, as well as stadiums and sports venues. We’re the official WiFi solutions provider of both the NFL and the MLB. So we do work with very large clients who need to provide that same type of networking experience you have in your home at the enterprise level.

We are a global company. We have over 3000 employees and contractors around the globe and we’ve been in business for over 25 years now. And E360 has really helped us to reach all of those employees and contractors globally. And I’ll turn it over to Jasmine to introduce herself as well. The second half of the comms team here for E360.

Jasmine Davis:

Thank you, Lisa. And thank you, Kyla and SocialChorus for the opportunity and the space to share Extreme’s comm story. We’re really excited to be here. So my role under the corporate comms umbrella as internal communications manager is to keep our 3000 plus global employees informed with all the latest and greatest happenings from around the company. And to ensure that our employees are engaged, they’re our advocates and making sure that we enhance our company culture and keeping that top of mind.

And we’re able to achieve this by partnering with members of our executive team and various departments from around the company using our internal app, which we affectionately called E360, but it’s Extreme 360, the longer version. And like Lisa said, I helped to co-manage the application, as well as our internal intranet site, the source. I also host and manage a lot of our internal events like employee town halls, department all hands, educational webinars, newsletters, you name it. That’s what I do. So I’m really excited to be here. Thank you.

Kyla Turner:

Good to have you and Lisa, tell us a little bit more about what you do in your role.

Lisa Hayden:

So in my role in addition to helping Jasmine with E360, I also oversee all of Extremes corporate social media handles, and I work with the field teams on their regional social handles. And I also work very closely with Jasmine on some communications initiatives around culture. We work a lot with our diversity and inclusion council to write external blog posts, featuring them and talking about the great things that we’re doing internally and to share those externally.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. So you both have the some of the internal and a lot of the culture. I love to hear that. So to introduce myself, my name is Kyla Turner. I am the strategic advisor for SocialChorus, and I love being here. And I love hearing these stories because in my background, as a communication professional, I was actually a customer of SocialChorus before joining the team. So when I was with Love’s Travel Stops, we also implemented a new platform, Loves Now, for our communications. And I got to see firsthand how it not only transformed our internal comms, but our entire culture as well, just as you’re going to hear today from Extreme Networks. I love sharing these stories and let’s go ahead and just get started. Oh, wait. Before we get started, do you have to give you a couple of housekeeping notes.

We would love to hear your questions. So if you would please put those in the chat, I’m going to be monitoring those. We also have some screenshots. I’m going to be jumping back and forth, but if I see some good questions in there and we come to a stopping point, I would love to stop and ask some questions as we go. If we don’t get to them, we will save some for the end and also do a Q&A then. Also, if you hear a great quote or a good example, you’re going to hear a lot of them feel free to post to your social media networks. It’s #tune2021. Okay. So let’s jump in and I love to start at the beginning and we say you were there kind of at the beginning, tell us the story of that moment when Extreme Networks knew their internal comms needed a new solution.

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah. So my first week was actually the first week where they launched E360 internally for all employees. And I remember being there and we were talking about why the company was investing in this. And it was because over the past several months before the launch of the internal app, they had run some testing on emails. They had put tags on the emails, going out to employees from the executives and all company-wide communications.

And the results were not, they were not good. And that did not make the communications team or the executives happy when they were hearing that only 20 to 30% of the employees were opening their emails. They were not happy because they know they were sending those emails because they applied to all employees company-wide. It was a communication that everyone needed to know and be engaged with. And the employees were just not opening it. They were getting too many emails, too many things were going out. Any emails that weren’t even just coming from the executive team, they were coming from different departments.

So they needed both a tool to help ensure those company-wide updates were seen. And then to cut down on the number of global emails that were just going around from different departments. So that’s when they looked at socialChorus and then we had a sales kickoff event and they decided to roll this tool out first to the sales and marketing teams, because at that point in time, our sales organization was the largest department at Extreme. So it made sense to get that buy-in from those two teams first, and then the adoption from there just grew once those two teams were active, engaged, we rolled it out to the subsequent departments.

And over the next two years, we really saw adoption increase. Jasmine will go into it later in the presentation, but that’s how we become more successful, just growing it into different departments with some structure behind it.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. And what a great process to start with sales and marketing and kind of get everyone engaged and then continue rolling out to your organization. It’s that good? It’s a good way to do it. And now let’s see, let’s jump into, it has now been a few years later and your program has definitely grown just as you’re talking, it’s matured, it’s transformed. In fact, let me share a screen because you have some amazing numbers here, but I want to make sure everyone sees. So this is where you are now. I mean, look at these numbers and it’s just been in a few years’ time. Right? So how is your program working now?

Lisa Hayden:

Now, I mean, if you look at these numbers, I just mentioned 20 to 30% of people were opening those company-wide emails. And now on a monthly basis, actually daily basis, daily and weekly, we’re seeing 90% of employees in the application. And then when we investigate those certain posts that are for company-wide updates. So we’re doing a post instead of an email, the engagement rate and open rates on those posts are phenomenal. They’re upwards of 70 and 80%. And for a company update where just five years ago, it was around 20 to 30%. It’s an extreme increase that our team is very happy that we’ve gotten those numbers up and they’ve seen it in the culture wise too. Our employees are more engaged because they are seeing the information they’re more engaged and they’re more effective because they have the tools that they need in front of them.

And one of the things that I will stop sharing this, I want to talk about your leadership because when we’ve talked before, we’ve really talked about how your leaders drove engagement. I always wonder, okay, those are incredible numbers. How did you get there? And was it a leadership push or was it you all just really doing some amazing content creation? What was the push that got you to these types of numbers?

So I think it was the leaders seeing those numbers originally, where it was very low from the number of employees company-wide opening those emails. Our E-team is competitive. They want people to be engaging with their content. They want to get the numbers up as high as possible. They’re just very driven to get the numbers through the roof. So they were very quick to help us. They’ve always been extremely supportive. I know Jasmine would say the same thing. And one thing that we do with them is that we’ve shown them that video sometimes works better with our employee base.

So the executives have all come on board and they will record selfie videos for us even if they’re on the road, they’re not in their home office, they’re traveling somewhere, they’ll pull out their phone in an airport or in an Uber and they’ll record a two minute update so that we can send that to employees rather than a one-page email to employees because it’s more engaging. And we see that our employees react better to it in that the number of video views is higher than email open rates.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah, I think, and we see a screen. Let me see, I have a screen for your leadership videos. I know this is something I had heard about E360 years ago, and this was one of the things that was really setting you apart is that your leadership was so engaged and that they didn’t mind doing these videos. And again, we’re showing some examples of your leadership and the videos that they do and the numbers are getting from it. How did they know to do this? Or how did you get them so involved that they felt comfortable enough to shoot some videos on? I know they were just doing it on the fly, like you said, in the back of Uber’s or at the airport, or how were you able to get them that level of comfort and that level of involvement?

Lisa Hayden:

I think it’s two parts, it’s one the data. So having the data to show, and then two it’s working with them. So we don’t write scripts for them. We’ll just send them a couple of bullet points. And once we send them the bullet points they might ask us a question if they just need to clarify something. And then once we have a quick conversation with them, they’ll go and record it. And we always tell them like, less keep it short because people don’t want to watch a video for longer than two or three minutes. So it just really working together to pinpoint them. And then once they’ve gotten more comfortable, now it’s really less involvement from the comms team. We just send them the ask and they’re able to do it since we’ve really honed in on showing them that data. And then how easy it can be to record them.

Kyla Turner:

So we already have a question coming in, and this is a good one. Vanessa asks are the executive videos reviewed before they’re released?

Jasmine Davis:

Absolutely. Of course, most of the time they’re making the videos but they do review them. And not only do we have the videos, but we also have it accompanied with a brief message as well. Because we’ve done some research internally. And though most of our employees enjoy the videos from our executive team. Some preferred the reading part as well, or you can just never know where they’ll be at the time and they might not be able to hear the video. But yes, to answer that question, they absolutely do review the videos as well as the brief messages. Like Lisa said, we just try to keep things very brief and succinct.

A couple of our core values is candor and transparency, which are my two favorite values at Extreme Networks. And each executive team member truly believes in that. And you can see that in some of what you’re seeing on the screen now. We’re constantly being told don’t be afraid to reach out to an E-team member because again, the transparency and the candor piece, but each of our executives have a very unique way that they do videos. Katy, our chief administrative and sustainability officer. She even hosts a weekly Katy’s corners series. So all of our E-team members are definitely on board with video, and it’s such a powerful tool that we definitely leverage at extreme.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. And I love, I feel like that’s where you get the flash when you get your leadership on camera and they’re talking and they’re using their own words, but I also want to go back to can one of you speak to, I know that having the data, the analytics and the insights was huge for your leaders as well. And that was another thing that pushed them to do these videos and get so involved. Can you speak to what you were able to show them with the data and how they use that?

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah, so with the data going back to different content types. We were just trying out all kinds of content types. In the beginning, we were doing long form articles, short form links. We were trying to link back to our internet site because our internet site is where we would host documents that would live for a long time. Any 360 was sort of the way where we would notify people of new updates and then they would click into that link and go to our internet page.

So we would try different content types. And then with the video, once we got that going, we just started looking at the data right away. And we were talking to our CEO. We were like, “Ed, this video got this many views compared to this email that we sent out last week.” And then just showing him that data. That really helped get him on board because he was probably hesitant at the beginning to do it because he was also very busy at the time. This is four or five years ago when there wasn’t a pandemic going on and there was traveling all the time. You’re on a different flight every other week, going to a new customer location or a new office to meet with employees.

So we also didn’t have a lot of time and to be on a call with someone, giving you bullet points that wasn’t always happening. It would most of the time be us sending him bullet points and maybe he was recording the video at nighttime. So it was really having to have those calls in advance and have like bi-weekly calls or monthly calls with the executive team when we were getting this, going to get them more comfortable at the beginning. So that now where we are today, it’s more mature and we don’t have to be that hands-on because now everyone’s on the same page with how it should operate.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. And we have a lot of good questions coming in about that. Sheena asks, are there any other ways that your executives engage besides video? These videos are great. How else do they engage?

Lisa Hayden:

Yeah, so they are also getting very heavily engaged. They’re going into the posts, they’re liking the posts, they’re commenting on employee submissions. So we get a lot of employees sharing things that are happening in their offices, or now when they’re working remotely, they’re sharing updates or screenshots of Zoom team meetings, and the executives will go on and they’ll comment on them, or we have a press release go out and they go in and they do comment there and tell employees why it’s so important. And they really go in, we have a shout outs channel actually that Jasmine launched as well. So the executives and any employees they’ll go to that shout outs channel, and then they will create one post and it shouts out a specific employee or team about a great accomplishment that they just had.

Kyla Turner:

Oh, that’s great to hear. I love to hear that they’re engaging in this way. And I’m glad you mentioned comments because there’s another leadership video question in here. Do you enable comments? Do you enable your employees to ask questions during these videos and either one of you can answer and was that hard for your leaders to wrap their heads around? I know that’s a question we get often is that can be scary. It’s just open it up for anyone to comment or ask. How did you handle that governance?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, so we definitely have the comments open. Again, we’re all about transparency and candor and we want to have people express themselves in the comment section. So it’s very rare that we ever turn off the comments for anything. We want people to share what their thoughts are and if they don’t want to share, that’s completely fine. But we do get a lot of engagement in the comment section and as Lisa said, it is it’s imperative that our E-team would show up on E360 in terms of utilizing the platform because that means like, hey, it’s not just the employees using it. It’s our E-team, our E-staff and using it as well. So comments are always encouraged and don’t be afraid to turn those things off. I’ll say that.

Kyla Turner:

I agree. I think that goes along with transparency. You’re right. Go ahead, Lisa.

Jasmine Davis:

I was going to say, I understand where those questions are coming from because we were hesitant. I was especially hesitant when we were first talking about opening up comments when SocialChorus first launched it because we were like, “We don’t know what people are going to say,” but then it came back to, transparency is one of our core values. We want to be transparent.

And then the other thing was another core value is ownership. So if an employee is going to write something on E360, their name is attached to that comment. So HR will see it right away if it’s not something appropriate. So that wasn’t something we were really too concerned about because we knew even if something went up, we would be able to take it down quickly and then report it if anything like that had happened. And that has never happened to us. So it was always just one of those concerns. It’s a possibility, but it’s never happened and we don’t think that it would happen.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. And I feel like tying it back to your core values is a great way to show the importance of your leaders kind of walking the talk and living out your core values. I see a question in here and it’s one that I remember getting at Loves. What if you don’t have an engaged set of leaders or if your highest executives aren’t engaged or don’t want to do videos, was there anything that you were doing to help pull them in or still get across the importance of that visibility?

Lisa Hayden:

I would say besides video we have our E360 first approach. So that goes back to getting more departments and more leaders on E360 originally. After the first year with the program, we came out with it in the comms team, as well as our CEO and our COO. We would go and say post it at E360. And we called it out at E360 first approach because we want employees to remember that news breaks first on E360. A company-wide update, a company video, it’s going to drop first on E360. And that’s the place that’s the central place for everyone to go to if you’re looking for timely information or a new announcement or update that has just come out.

So by doing that, we got into the executives minds that if they had an update that they wanted all employees to see or an entire department to see, they should post it at E360 first, whether or not it’s a video. Like our HR team, for example, they have a monthly newsletter that goes out that highlights all of the employees who have anniversaries that month. And they were originally just doing an outlook email and it would go out at different times of the month. It wasn’t on a regular cadence, but now we’re putting it in E360. It’s a new format that’s engaging for employees to click into. And then employees who are spotlighted that month, our head of HR also will ask them to tell their story.

So now included in that article update is a couple of different stories firsthand from the employees who were spotlighted that month. And it’s not an email, it’s still a text update, but it’s on the application and it’s easier to engage with. And then we can still include it in email newsletters that we send from the application.

Kyla Turner:

I love that. I love that E360 first approach in that priority. How did you get that across? I feel like that is always an initiative that we’re looking at as internal communicators of, we want our employees to hear at first and we want to have this information be a primary source. how did you get the entire company to adopt that principle in that priority?

Lisa Hayden:

So also during these past five years, Extreme has acquired four different companies in that same span. So it was really important before we went on this acquisition spree to get our employees who were at the legacy extreme company to really be full fledged advocates for the platform, because we were going to be bringing on thousands of new employees from these different organizations. And Jasmine can speak to this because she actually came from one of the acquired companies. When they come on board, things change, processes are new. It’s not the same as it was at the previous company because everything is changing in migrating to these new platforms.

So we really wanted our extreme employees to be advocates for the new employees coming on board so that when they asked the former extreme employees, how do I find this information? They had it in their minds, oh, E360 first. Go to E360 first. And this is where you’ll find information. And then if you don’t find it there, reach out to the comms team or reach out to HR to find that information.

And in addition to just using word of mouth and getting the executives to talk about it during company-wide all hands. we also had banners in the major office locations that would say E360 first, and we would have directions on how to download E360 and how to use it. And they were just big banners in the lunchroom.

So it was sort of everywhere you went, you saw both in the opposite. And then on our intranet site, we had ads for it. So people were seeing it everywhere. They went.

Kyla Turner:

That’s fantastic. And you’re proving my point that sometimes I feel like the old school ways of doing things, the banners, the posters are still effective once we’re all kind of getting back into the office.

Lisa Hayden:

It’s [inaudible 00:24:31] but then, yeah.

Kyla Turner:

I love all of those different ways. And Jasmine, I love that we’re talking now about reaching your employees and all the different ways that you’re doing it. So let’s talk about how you are connecting them to that information, the specific information they need to do their jobs and the information that they need. What are some of the things that you’ve started doing as you’ve kind of started leading this platform?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, sure. So when I first came on board and as Lisa said, I was a part of an acquisition. So the very first thing I saw when I went into the San Jose office was a banner for E360. And I was told that, “Hey, this is the platform that we use to communicate with our internal audiences. And this is what you’ll be helping them manage.” So I had to drink the Kool-Aid pretty quickly. One of my first tasks was to make sure that my teammates from my previous company were all onboarded. So as I was onboarding and learning more about the company, I had the task to make sure that my teammates from the previous company were onboarding seamlessly to Extreme Networks as well.

So one of the first things I took on at Extreme Networks was I studied the platform, saw the content type, saw what was the functionalities. And I saw that there was an email newsletter. So I started a weekly Roundup, which takes on the most important pieces of content during the week. And I put it all in one place in the weekly Roundup when we’d send those out every Friday. So it could be the breaking news, like Lisa mentioned, any kind of announcements any sales enablement tools, or it alerts new partnerships, customer wins. We just wrapped up a national pet day for some social advocacy. So people can kind of actually see those.

So the newsletter has been a big hit, and I do get emails from time to time from our employees that say, “Hey, this is very helpful. Sometimes I can’t get in the platform every day, but at least I know the top things that are going on around the company.” So it really warms my heart to know that people are engaged and that they feel a part in that they’re getting the most important information that they need also to as Lisa mentioned, we do use the E360 platform and I did see a question come in.

We use the mobile app as well as the desktop version. But we also use our intranet site called the source. And that is a SharePoint based platform. That’s where the content really lives. And we’ve actually added E360 amplifiers to the home page in the different departmental site. So we have specific channels that might… Yep, that’s it right there. So we might have different channels. So sales enablement on the source site, they’ll have their specific feed in there versus our executive corner, which I’ll have our executive channel feed.

So we break the news on E360, but if the content needs to live a lot longer, it’s on the source site. So what you’re seeing right now at the top left-hand corner is our E360 desktop. We just launched our quick links and they have been a huge game changer for us. So we are bringing more people into the platform, which is exactly what we want. So what we did was we pulled our employees, worked with it to see, which are the top places that our employees are going and how can we bring them into each E360?

So as you can see the top left-hand side, if you can see it, it’s the source again, that’s our intranet site. That’s where our content lives a lot longer than we have my app. So that’s your app directory. So people can actually click on that and go where they need to go. Spark is our sales enablement site. So sales team, we’re pulling them in there. And then at the very end. We change that on a weekly basis. So if there’s something like in a mandatory all-employee training, we’ll put that up there. Right now we’re running a company store sell. So that’s up there right now. We’re also going to be hosting a day of giving. So that last one, we use that to change out what’s going on around the company. So people can [crosstalk 00:28:55].

Kyla Turner:

I love the thought that you’re changing these out. We have so many customers who think you go with the four at the top and then they need to stay. And I know, and I like how you have three that do. And so you do kind of get that, that habit going, that behavior, but I like how you’re reserving one to switch out for whatever is going on and what you’re trying to direct your employees to do.

Jasmine Davis:

Absolutely. And as you can see, and just as an example, so the last one on the right is the company store sell right below that image on the right side, next to the lady. You can actually see the owner on our intranet homepage, the source, we have corporate store. So when they click on that and E360, it takes them to that homepage where they can then click and go where they need to go. So again, we’re trying to bring people to the platform and then have them go out wherever they need to go.

Another example of the feeds is actually in there as well. Katy, again she does a Katy’s Corner Series. So as you can see, that’s the feed that goes in there and the subsequent posts, and then over to the left is our Weekly Roundup newsletter. Again goes out every Friday to our global employee base. And we use a newsletter feature. We use the one where there’s like a featured post and then the subsequent post are right below that. So that’s just an example of us leveraging the newsletter. And right there, we were promoting our brand new office of the CTO podcasts. So that that’s how we keep our employees informed and engaged as much as possible.

Kyla Turner:

You’re doing quite a bit. I love this. And one of the things that we haven’t talked about yet is content bundling, which to me was a whole new turn. Tell me what you’re doing when you talk about content bundling.

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah. So it’s one of my personal favorites just because I live in the newsletter world. So for example, we just launched our major league baseball and Extreme Networks partnerships. So we worked with our marketing team to identify all the assets that they had available. That way we can ensure that our internal teams knew exactly what was going to come out before the press release, just making sure our internal teams were well-informed before the release goes out. So each post is culminated inside the newsletter. So one post would be the MLB Extreme Lockup as well as a video. Again, as you all know, by now, we love video at Extreme Networks. So on the left-hand side, you’d see our Chief Operating Officer, Norman Rice and our Chief Marketing Officer Wes Durow. They did a quick video, basically explaining more about the partnership, the intricacies and why we should all be excited for such a great team effort and accomplishment that we’re able to partner with the MLB.

So that is a content piece, email signatures, press release. Once that comes out, what we’re communicating to our partners and customer base, all of that is culminated into one newsletter. So it’s literally a one-stop shop where you can reference all the pieces of content and that’s how we bundle everything. So that is how we do that. And to get the word out there, of course we do emails, but we also leverage our mobile push notifications as well, which might bring them right back to whatever piece of content we want.

So the example up there at the right hand side, we were announcing our major league baseball partnership. So not only did we hit them up via email, we gave them a gentle mobile push notification. So they can directly view the video and see all and hear the excitement directly from Norman and Wes.

Kyla Turner:

I love this bundle. I love seeing this all because I think that everyone needs layers. That’s how you get a message to stick. And I think there’s so many good layers in here. So are you putting all of this within your platform? You have video, you have newsletter, you have press release, you have outreach via email plus the notification. So all of this lives within E360?

Jasmine Davis:

All of it lives via E360. And for this particular messaging we did because we do have partnerships, not only with the MLB, but the NFL, but we do have an extreme game day channel. So a lot of that content lived there, but we made it an auto follow channel. So all of our employees are accessing the content. And again, we do leverage our intranet site. So there is a dedicated site just for our MLB partnership. And they can reference all of the materials there as well. So each of those content pieces direct them right back to the internet site. Again, we break the news, give them everything, they could reference it on E360, but then if they need to really, really dig down and see the resource later on, then it’s definitely on the internet.

Kyla Turner:

I love hearing that. And this is something I have to ask you because I know you’re measuring all of these things and we sometimes see some trepidation from different companies of saying, we don’t want to send out too many push notifications. We don’t want to bother our employees. And I heard you refer to it as it’s a gentle notification. I will say one of the things we learned at Love’s was our employees wanted work push notifications, but it was actually something they asked for. They said, we’re going to miss it. We’re very busy doing our jobs. So they actually asked us to send out more so that they wouldn’t miss the big pieces that we were trying to push out. Do you see something similar? What is your insights in your reporting telling you on that?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, so we don’t over abuse the mobile push notification, and we have the same exact theory for emails as well. That’s why we always try to leverage or tell people like, “Hey, come to E360 check it two minutes a day.” You’ll get all the information that you need. So we do have people that definitely prefer email versus mobile. We have the metrics for that. Sometimes it’s a little bit, half and half on that, but we also just make sure the content shows up in different areas for them as well to leverage.

So again, on the intranet site, E360 push notifications. As Lisa mentioned, if it’s on a banker somewhere, we will do that too. And pre-pandemic, we were actually also leveraging Zoom as well to let people know what’s going on. But in terms of the yearn for mobile push notifications, I think we’re at a really good place where people aren’t feeling like they’re being bugged or being annoyed by them. But Lisa, if you have anything else to add.

Lisa Hayden:

No, I think you captured it perfectly. Jasmine. Another thing too with push notifications is that we do work with all of our program managers at extreme who are contributing content to E360 and we make sure that they sync with us before they schedule a push notification or something that way too many aren’t going out on the same day or at the same time. There’s some spacing between major posts like that.

Kyla Turner:

That’s great. Now you have all this good news to share and you bundled it and put it together. So well, there’s a question that came in do you allow for sharing and social advocacy with your news? Is that a priority with the new platform?

Lisa Hayden:

Yes. So we do post all of our press releases, all of our blogs and any resources on our website to E360 and then we’ll also publish social campaigns and we’ll tweak them for employees to share, and we will schedule them to certain channels on E360 so that employees are able to go in and share, but not all content is shareable. Of course, like the selfie videos are internal only, but anything external, like a press release, we do make shareable and we include a default post if an employee would like to use that, or they’re always welcome to write their own social post as well.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. I have another question up here. It says, did you have trouble getting people to proactively contribute content? So now we’re talking about user generated content and are you allowing it, how much are you allowing and are you promoting it to come in and get that continuous content from your employees?

Jasmine Davis:

Yeah, yeah. Oh, I’ll take this one, Lisa, and then you can definitely add more color to that. So we do have content contributors for each channel and they help to generate our content for those different channels. Now, in terms of our end users, we did have people that were shy to share. Then you have people that are really, really excited to share. And we have been doing a lot of different campaigns internally not only to increase advocacy and kind of like that social hope we’ll get together filling now that we’re in the virtual world, but that has also helped to make people a little bit more comfortable to use the platform.

So for example, we did a throwback Thursday with sports like people were able to share their special sports photos. We gave them a prize each week for whoever submitted and that got people’s feet wet to use the image feature or to get in there and make a post.

So I feel like even though we had like an MO in terms of getting more engaged, I think it definitely helped people get their feet wet. So usually people, when they do it once they want to do it again and again and again. So that definitely helps to build the advocacy piece with getting people on board. Now we did just recently start E360 office hours throughout the month of April. And we do that just to make sure that our employees know that they have the opportunity to have one-on-one with myself or Lisa to go over the platform and to answer any questions that they might have in terms of usage. I get into usage and then of course my mind goes crazy and I’m like, “Well, what do you do?”

Well, then we’d start discussing content strategy so I can bring them back to the platform so they could share more about what they’ve got going on. We also host team Extreme EDU webinars, which each month we host a different webinar that covers a different department and each quarter Lisa and I and Lauren Peresada, she’s our account manager at SocialChorus. We host a webinars to let people know what’s the latest and greatest in the world of E360 in terms of maybe the image posts went from one to 10. So it’s kind of an Instagram feel as well as a quick link. So we definitely keep them abreast on what’s going on with E360 and Lisa I’ll let you add anything if you have anything else.

Lisa Hayden:

I was going to say another thing that we didn’t dive into yet was something that did help with increasing adoption early on. We used to do these analytics dashboards for our executive team and we would show them, because we would pull the data into E360 to see which employees are active. What department are they in? What type of jobs are they? Are they individual contributors managers or are they contractors?

And then from that data, we would present it to our CEO and our COO who really wanted to know they were very engaged and they would then use that in the executive meetings. And they’d be like, “Oh, this department is lower.” And then they would talk with that E-team member. And then it was that E-team member’s job to get their team more engaged. And then it would come from the top down that E-team member would then go and work with their vice presidents who would then cascade it down.

And they would encourage the VPs to go in there and publish because when you see your VPs and your direct managers in there, engaging with the platform and sharing updates, it makes you want to go in and share updates as well. So I think that is something that helped us out originally. But now I’m doing these campaigns like throwback Thursday, and we’re doing another one to celebrate Extreme’s 25th anniversary. We’re asking employees to share throwback photos from their time at Extreme. If there was an event they attended maybe last year or maybe it was 20 years ago and they have a photo of it, we want employees to share those fun photos from the past, and that’s going to be a new channel on E360 for employees to submit to.

Kyla Turner:

That’s good to hear. Yeah. So I like that you kind of brought us back to the data and to what your executives are really looking at. I like that kind of competitive piece they’ve got in there too about your whys. Why aren’t you up here at this level of contribution and engagement and really kind of looking at the different teams and departments for that too.

Lisa Hayden:

We could see you, one thing that the sales did specifically because sales has quotas, was that we took the data for sales employees specifically, and then compared it to the quota attainment for two quarters. And we saw that the employees that were meeting or exceeding their quotas were also the most engaged sales employees on a E360. So that helped a lot as well, because then that helped the sales team really get more of the sales employees, onboarded. And then it also translated to the other departments going back to what our CEO and COO always tell us the more engaged the employees are, the more effective they’re going to be. And we had that evidence with sales. So really convincing the other departments. We want you to be active on this because we want the employees to be more effective. We want them to be engaged.

Kyla Turner:

That’s really what it all comes down to. I’m so glad that you said that you kind of led us into this last slide. I know we’re in our last couple of minutes. In conclusion you all produce some really great takeaways for everyone in the audience. Anything else that you’d like to say as we wrap up? Anything else that we should walk away with? I love these conclusion pieces and these three takeaways.

Jasmine Davis:

So really quickly our CEO always tells us that data is the new currency and we use that to help advance our customers and partners in terms of leveraging their data. And we also use that same concept internally. So we have similar data points like everyone else, like country of origin, department who your manager is and who you report up to. And we use those different data pieces to target our audiences, as well as making sure we’re curating the content that really matters to them. So I would definitely say don’t be shy to leverage those data points and really read up and research where your employees are most interested, because I definitely will tell you that does tell a story. The data does tell a story and you can help to enhance that story with data.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah. So very last thing. I know we’re getting ready to go, but I had to pop up this last screen. As you say, if you’re looking at the data and you’re really providing the information that your employees need and want, and you’re meeting them where they are through all of your different the ways that you’re doing that, those were great examples and you’ve received a great response from it. So had to share this slide of that has to feel good. And I’m excited for where you’re going to take this next.

Jasmine Davis:

We are too. And it’s really great to hear from our employees. These are their words, not ours. So you can see for yourself the power of leveraging data to optimize your comms. And I wish everyone the best of luck that was on the call today with that.

Kyla Turner:

Yeah. Thank you so much. Yeah, go ahead, Lisa. [inaudible 00:45:12].

Lisa Hayden:

It’s definitely very important now in this remote world that we live in being able to connect with each other. So these campaigns we’re doing with throwback Thursday and just getting employees to submit what their work from home setup looks like. It really helps enhance that culture where you’re not able to do those large gatherings right now. So I don’t think it’s ever been more important to be able to have a tool, to communicate and help engage your employees.

Kyla Turner:

I agree. And it’s wonderful how you are really prioritizing your employees and their voices and amplifying those. So thank you so much. I know we’re at time. Thank you both for being here. I can’t wait to talk with you more about this and to our audience. Thank you so much for being engaged and being here for the past 45 minutes, we are going to provide a recording of this session and we’re going to follow up on your questions that we didn’t get to as well. But thank you all again. And let’s see, what do we have next? We have a quick 15 minute break and then we have our afternoon keynote coming up to you. So thanks for being with us today. And we will see you all soon.

 

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