The pandemic allowed some businesses – and their staff in particular – to shine, and British-based premium lifestyle brand Joules has been a clear winner. The company managed to increase employee engagement during the pandemic, which is no small feat.
We’re delighted that Fuse played a significant role in helping this increase in engagement. Through the combined strengths of an enthusiastic, hard-working Joules team and the Fuse platform, the company has made some truly remarkable achievements that are demonstrably driving growth.
Want to hear how Joules did it? Read on and we'll give you the inside scoop, and if you’d like to know more, the Joules case study on our website will give you all the juicy details.
Employee Engagement and the Measurable Impact on Company Performance
Joules is a great case study for illustrating just how important employee engagement is when it comes to driving revenue, profit and business growth. We know: the term ‘employee engagement’ may sound like a fad, but the fact is that the pandemic has taught companies a lot about the relationship between employee engagement, remote work and company performance.
It’s a threat that’s very real and already lurking. According to a poll of over 2,000 employers and employees from all around the world and published in theHarvard Business Review, as many as two-thirds of employees who work remotely are not engaged in their work. The poll also discovered that employees who work outside of the office are less likely to remain with their companies over the long haul.
It’s a real risk to business performance, but as Joules has proven, it’s not unmanageable. You can increase employee engagement even amongst a remote team. Doing it via a learning platform may not seem the most obvious way to do it. But as Joules has proven, the Fuse platform increased both employee engagement and business performance so much during the pandemic that the company was even able to drop a few of its other platforms.
building culture and community + better business results
In selecting Fuse as its learning platform, Joules had many key goals. The company wanted to support a wider sense of community across the Joules network by connecting colleagues around the world and providing a safe space for them to communicate and share stories. It also wanted to better understand the individual learning needs of its employees through measurable analytics that could tie learning to business performance. What it didn’t realise was just how effectively Fuse would help it to achieve its first goal, and how this would automatically improve business performance.
Covid became a real catalyst for learner engagement. At the beginning of 2020, 27% of all Joules employees were actively using Fuse, but by June 2020, 81% of employees were using it.
Lockdown had forced most of the workforce to go completely remote, and Joules employees immediately saw the value of Fuse as not just a source of the product portfolio information they needed to do their jobs, but also a platform for community support and that much-needed employee connection we all missed during lockdown.
How do we know employees were more engaged with Fuse? Here’s what HR Director Lyn Warren had to say:
“We created a lot of wellbeing content to support people and provide tips on how to stay physically and mentally well. We then started to see a big uptick in user-generated content with people posting their own updates about fitness, upcycling projects, and volunteer work. That was very uplifting and I got the sense it was really helping to reduce the anxiety that people were feeling due to the pandemic.”
The proof in the pudding? At a time when most of its workforce was furloughed, Joules actually managed to increase employee engagement, moving from a Best Companies 1 star rating up to 3 stars. Impressive!
Don’t think that employee engagement has the power to affect the bottom line? Here are two great examples:
Beverage giant Molson Coors found that highly engaged employees were five times less likely than non-engaged employees to have safety incidents. It also found engaged employees seven times less likely to have a lost-time safety incident. By improving employee engagement, the company saved $1,721,760 in safety costs in one year.
Construction equipment maker Caterpillar's increased employee engagement resulted in $8.8 million annual savings from decreased attrition, absenteeism and overtime in one European manufacturing facility, and a $2 million increase in profit plus a 34% increase in highly satisfied customers in a start-up plant.
Unexpected Cost Savings and Surprise Support
Lyn also explained that Fuse serves additional business needs beyond learning as well - so much so in fact that the company was able to retire its document management system and move all documents to Fuse where they could more easily be shared.
The Fuse platform also became a critical tool for those employees who were not furloughed, and who had to navigate the shift to remote working. Many of these employees had to reskill and upskill, and Fuse was integral to facilitating this learning.
From a practical point of view, Fuse provided IT support, such as getting remote workers set up with Microsoft teams. It also became a hub for risk assessment and training for the social distance regulations employees had to become familiar with post lockdown. Managers were able to watch videos demonstrating what store layouts should look like so that they were well prepared for store re-openings.
What Joules proved during the pandemic is an important lesson to us all: no one could have prepared for such a disruptive event of mass proportions, but regardless of the nature of the disruption, employee engagement must be protected at all times in order to ensure company performance is not affected. Many employees will choose to continue to work remotely at least some of the time going forward, and companies need to foster engagement if they are to keep their talent, and keep their talent happy.
What Joules has shown us is that a collaborative environment where employees can share learning experiences can also promote engagement amongst employees. We’re delighted that Lyn and her team have found the platform to be such a motivator and we look forward to following Joules on its journey as it rolls out Fuse to new recruits to facilitate its onboarding process.