Standard Life Aberdeen plc is a global financial services business which manages pensions, annuities, long-term savings and insurance.
Founded in 1825, it is one of Scotland’s most successful companies, with headquarters in Edinburgh and offices around the world. The business brought in CompanyNet to satisfy their need for a new global corporate intranet.
In an organisation of 8,000 staff, the biggest challenge was to find a way to let users find, share and use content without being overwhelmed by it. We undertook a staff survey, to which 25 per cent of staff responded. This highlighted the huge level of demand for us to find solutions to the problems that were dogging their existing intranet, and validated the need for a better one. Staff members were experiencing challenges with the existing intranet, including a great deal of poorly-structured and outdated content, confusing navigation, and a search engine which did not return satisfying results. As a result, staff were abandoning the existing intranet, rather than viewing it as a useful source of corporate information.
We created an intranet, which became known as ‘Stan’, as part of delivering a wider digital workplace that would enable Standard Life to better communicate across teams, departments and locations. Our extensive experience of designing, building and deploying intranets came to the fore in delivering Stan. The first step was to undertake a large-scale card sort exercise with Standard Life staff in order to design an information architecture that met their expectations. Then, we used our Kira intranet platform to accelerate the solution to a point where we could quickly start customising and building bespoke features required by Standard Life. We placed social features at the heart of the intranet, including user-generated newsfeeds to complement more traditional intranet features such as corporate news. This enables staff to leave useful comments on pages, immediately share information with their colleagues, and hold ad hoc online discussions to quickly resolve issues.
“CompanyNet were very accommodating and keen to learn about the way we operate, and what they needed to do to help us get to the point of delivery …
They worked very hard to understand our requirements. They’ve got good insight into intranets, and extensive SharePoint experience; both of those were invaluable as we went through the project.”— Allan Tanner, Senior Digital Manager, Standard Life
Stan was immediately more accessible than its predecessors, not only on the company’s desktop PCs, but for the first time across mobile devices such as phones and tablets. The Standard Life team created a thorough communications plan for introducing and launching the site to their colleagues. This included the creation of promotional materials, in-office advertising, workshops and training sessions to ensure the smooth transition to the new intranet. The intranet was launched to Standard Life’s offices around the world in February 2016. The work of Standard Life and CompanyNet paid off, with uptake of the new site exceeding expectations – three million page hits in the first two months since launch, or an average of 10 pages visited by every staff member every day.
“We’ve found it a really good relationship to have, and we’re delighted with the outcome.”— Greig Rutherford, Global Communications Senior Manager, Standard Life