Accelerate connectivity across 40 offices
Ivie & Associates (Ivie) is a marketing services company with a unique business model. They locate their marketing teams right at client sites. In the last year, they expanded from the southwest United States, to a truly global organization. Their need for better communication and an inclusive company culture was intense.
Fourth time’s a charm - after multiple unsuccessful attempts to find an intranet that would work for their team, Ivie discovered Jostle's unique approach. Ivie’s Jostle® intranet quickly engaged their team, providing a central hub to reinforce cultural values, and share expertise, successes, and resources. Ivie can now deliver a consistent brand experience across their many locations, improving collaboration and engagement company-wide.
Ivie & Associates
- Size & Locations:
40 offices across the USA & Asia
Marketing & advertising services
Jodi Marsh, SVP Communications and Digital Marketing
J. Ackley, Vice President, Technology Services
70% weekly 85% monthly
Who is Ivie & Associates?
Ivie is a marketing and advertising services firm. But unlike many services firms, Ivie creates deep partnerships with its customers, embedding its staff right into client offices. Ivie employees work directly on-site with their clients to effectively deliver marketing, advertising, digital, and communications services.
Ivie’s head office is in Texas. Over the last 21 years they have expanded to over 40 on-site locations throughout the United States and China. That adds an additional level of complexity to how Ivie manages its brand and culture. As embedded employees engage with clients, they also need to be a core part of, and very connected to, the greater Ivie team. How do they keep all of these people feeling part of Ivie and benefiting from one another’s creativity and insight?
Challenge: Engaging employees worldwide
Why is internal communications so vital to Ivie? It’s not just about making people feel good. In the fast paced, creative world of marketing it is vital that employees inspire and learn from one another. Embedding team members in client sites brings a lot of value to customers. Their competitive advantage is the accelerated learning that comes from that customer interaction. However, it also intensifies the need for and the challenges to building a sense of teamwork across all 40 sites.
Ivie needed an intranet that would encourage their team to stay engaged with one another and the company as a whole, while working day to day at client sites. Now Ivie is helping customers succeed more quickly and easier than before – thanks in part to their Jostle intranet.
“Culture is very important to our company.”Jodi Marsh
Senior Vice President, Communications and Digital Marketing
“Becoming part of the context and conversation of our clients is what makes our team so effective. At the same time, when the client has a new or unique need, our employees can use their new intranet to tap into the insight and expertise of all of Ivie to rapidly deliver,” explains Jodi.
Ivie holds quarterly Town Hall-style company meetings that get people excited and engaged. But that’s only four times a year. They wanted that same energy and excitement every day, and needed to find a way to sustain that enthusiasm. They also wanted a way to share urgent announcements in real time, such as technology outages or upgrades.
“Our communications department used to create all of our content. We’d write and write and write and search for content, and then e-mail people. Now we have content authors dispersed across the company that are constantly populating and updating information. So it has taken the sole burden off the comms team while actually increasing content quality,” said Jodi. “It’s pretty amazing because you can even see which stories resonate better,” adds J. Ackley, Vice President, Technology Services.
Jostle’s intranet software works where others hadn’t
The Jostle platform was not Ivie’s first attempt at an intranet. In fact, they had already gone through several iterations, including a well-known Jostle competitor and two home-grown solutions. Each of these attempts shared a critical problem – few people used them.
“Compared to the last couple of systems that we used, the attach rate with the Jostle intranet has just been through the roof.”J. Ackley
Vice President, Technology Services
When they tried the competitor’s “enterprise social” approach, they ran into problems with personal chatter (recipe trading was a hit). The overall noise caused by the social feeds effectively blocked any focused, effective communications. Moreover, they found that their work processes and ways of interacting didn’t fit with the competitor’s framework, forcing unnecessary changes to how they did things. That made it hard to adopt.
Instead of bridging silos they ended up creating new ones. “We found that [our prior intranet] lead us into being more siloed and that we couldn’t make it reflect our workflows” said J. “It wasn’t user-friendly. People just didn’t like how it looked. You had way too many clicks to get to something. And the feeds were just too noisy with a few people jabbering about stuff that wasn’t important to many.”
It is not just leadership who think that this fourth attempt is working. Their Jostle intranet employee participation rates prove it. They are steady at over 70% participation weekly and 87% monthly. Why did this happen? Usability certainly played a role, as did the mobile apps.
“The mobile app has been a real help. People are using that as their employee directory, plus they use it to check in throughout the day. We make it a simple hub for everything in the company, including other technologies we use,” added J.
Google Apps integration
Ivie is a heavy user of Google Docs, so Google Apps integration was a high priority for them. Google integration with the Jostle intranet provides convenient Single Sign On and tight integration with Google Docs. Since Ivie is bringing on new staff very rapidly, the Integration has added real value. It’s very simple to add new users.
The Jostle platform LIBRARY is fully integrated with Google Drive, making it much easier to surface and find key information. For many of their staff “the LIBRARY is a better presentation of information for our users, and they can find the right documents more easily than in the Google UI,” says J. The integration was easy, “we had it integrated in about a week or less” added J. The integration also includes a one-click launch of a Google Hangout for quick, face-to-face discussions.
The business impact: Learning & participation
Ivie believes that culture is key to building and sustaining both their creativity and service quality. It’s how they learn fast and build a work environment where people feel connected to each other and to the company.
Culture and community service are clearly important to Ivie employees and management. They support one another in challenges for charity. They compete for most interesting team-building events across various locations. Though they work in many places, they are also one big team that likes to work together and help each other reach goals personally and professionally.
“We notice that with our community and culture-focused content, the views go through the roof,” says J.
There’s been some great cross-site learning too. An example: Ivie has not one, but two NFL client projects. One Ivie team helped the first football team run a smashingly successful charity event. The Jostle intranet helped the Ivie employees working with the second NFL team find and build upon the work of the first team to raise the bar even higher with less effort. The clients (and their charities) won.
Another simple but powerful new routine is around welcoming new hires. Ivie is growing so fast and they were determined not to become a large faceless corporation where people had no human connection with one another. Now every time a person is hired, they post a picture and a Q&A with them as a NEWS article. It gives people a chance to say ‘hi’ and discover shared hobbies and interests. It gets people connected into the team very quickly.
Ivie’s new intranet provides a central hub, which allows for the sharing of expertise and resources. It enables everyone to share their successes and reinforce cultural values. The ability to do this has helped Ivie deliver a consistent and elevated brand experience across their many locations and marketing disciplines.
About Jostle Corporation
Jostle is the creator of a new kind of intranet that is designed to help leaders engage their workforce. Its elegance and relevance yield exceptional participation rates – exceeding five times industry standards. Jostle’s intranet is turnkey, cloud-based, and requires no IT resources. For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org or visit us online at www.jostle.me.