Project Date: 2001 – 2003
Project Type: Corporate Rebranding
Though internal communications is often seen as an HR-driven, reactive communications discipline, when applied strategically, it is an effective tool to generate excitement among employees and inform them about business goals and initiatives. As internet service became free and America Online (AOL) was passing its peak, membership was rapidly declining and call center employee attrition was climbing. Leadership was looking to improve the employee experience to retain talent and inspire employees to work harder to retain members.
A custom strategy was developed to keep a steady stream of consistent and powerful messages and information flowing to call center employees through newsletters, a leading-edge online portal, posters, flyers, paycheck stuffers, small weekly and large annual events, and an innovative audio/visual system that started as a pilot program in the Albuquerque call center. The A/V system was high tech at the time and rotated business messaging, sales statistics, team metrics, call center announcements and new AOL advertising. The pilot program was expanded to other AOL call centers because of its success.
In addition to the A/V system and the other communications vehicles, executive leadership conducted a series of roadshows in the call centers and was trained to effectively deliver key messages to call center staff and generate excitement for new AOL programs.
The internal communications program improved morale and sales at the call center level:
- Dramatic improvement in member retention
Double-digit gain in less than a year
- Increase employee retention
Double-digit drop in employee attrition
- Successful pilot program
Audio/visual program that conveyed critical business messaging and information was successfully piloted in Albuquerque and rolled out to other call centers
- Training executives
Executive leadership was trained to effectively deliver key messages to call center staff