The employees App of MW-Anlagenbau & Drehteile Corporate Group
The fact that the MEA is versatile is also highly valued by the MW Anlagenbau & Drehteile corporate group. They successfully use the MEA as an employee app, above all to provide their employees with news or so that colleagues can exchange information with each other. In the following article, Mayer Wilmar reports on the project process and the introduction of their employee app.
The project from Mayer Wilmar’s point of view
In-house communication is a field in flux. As a company with medium-sized structures, we are proactively driving this transformation forward. With the changes brought about by the Corona pandemic, we at the MW Anlagenbau & Drehteile group of companies decided to introduce the employee app from plazz AG.
A total of 8 weeks passed from the project kickoff to the launch of the employee app. In cooperation with plazz AG, we divided the project into the following phases and defined the respective responsibilities within the company.
- Creation of the content concept: What kind of content, which areas and to what extent and regularity content will be provided. The HR lead and the communication department created a content framework without being too restrictive and worked exemplarily from the start of the concept with first real content.
- Creation of an interaction and feedback concept: just as important as the content itself seemed to us the proactive involvement of all employees – in the form of a public chat, questions and comments on individual contributions, but also classical structured queries.
- Interfaces and processes: The area that initially appeared to be very complex, almost like a black box, could however be defined and realized the fastest. Via a classic SAML Single Sign On integration, we were able to grant all employees access to the employee app system. The implementation of the interface by our IT, in coordination with plazz AG, was agreed and technically implemented in less than 4 days.
- Go Live Plan: In the Go Live Plan we have determined the best possible release strategy for our group. For reasons of simplicity and speed, we decided on publication via an internal company link. It was also essential to consult with the works council before the launch, where the following questions had to be clarified:
- Is the use of the app voluntary?
- Is the employee’s behavior or performance monitored by the app?
- Is access only possible via the employee’s own smartphone?
- Is there a differentiation between work and leisure?
- Does the app offer sufficient protection for personal data?
- The launch of the application for Apple devices, Android devices and as a web app took place only 8 weeks after our first project kickoff. It was important for us to have the support of our owner and CEO during the launch. Thus, we included a welcome and thank you video from the owner in a prominent place in the app. No less important, however, is the fact that employees are picked up and technical questions about the install process and use are answered in an FAQ. Last but not least, we also pointed out the handling of personal data and explained the data usage conditions. The app itself was not published in the public app stores. Links were provided for access/download via the company’s internal intranet.
Scope and function overview:
News: Daily company news in the app is a central component of our offer: From regular news to press reviews with external links. For this, employees from individual departments proactively report to the communications department, who have an account to the CMS and can thus independently post and publish content.
Chat: It’s use is intended for quick and easy exchange between employees and to support classic e-mail communication. The chat function is encrypted so that sensitive company data is not disclosed.
Pinboards: A company suggestion system to promote workflows, idea management and cooperation among employees.
Events: Invitations can be conveniently sent and accepted or declined with the help of a separate section in the app. The app has a calendar in which events can be entered and employees can receive reminders, if necessary. This is a useful and supportive function in relation to the various meetings that employees hold every day. The invitations are easily sent via push message so that they are read quickly.
Company figures: This section is available to managers. It graphically demonstrates how we are positioned in the market.
Room plans/locations: In this section of the app, new employees in particular are supported in orienting themselves. For example, with a clear map and a legend that explains individual locations in more detail.
Employee surveys: This is an important section of the app to ensure optimal employee satisfaction. Here, surveys are easily designed and sent simultaneously to the whole staff, or to a selected group of employees.
Crisis communication: This is intended to be used in emergencies for various crises, such as: accidents in the factory, fire on the premises, but also as a precaution in the event of a Corona outbreak. The advantage is the quick push message on every smartphone, which is particularly important in sudden and unpredictable situations.
Within just 4 weeks of launch, over 50% of the workforce were using the employee app. The numbers climbed to over 85% in the following 8 weeks. The simplicity and effectiveness of the employee app has encouraged us to further expand the offer and scope of the employee app.
The news and interaction section has had a very high activation rate from the start. But also in the surveys, a participation rate of over 50% was achieved. Overall, the digital offer has helped to demonstrate innovation to the employees and to live the openness and readiness for digital technologies in the company.
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