Case Studies – Growing Organizations
- ROI: Building Inclusive Cultures and Valuing Talent
- Creating a Service Center Par Excellence
- Urgent Care for Healthcare Organization’s Revolving Door
- Qualifying to Deliver Quality
- HR Efficiency for a Biotech
- Intervening In an Integration
ROI: Building Inclusive Cultures and Valuing Talent
A senior HR leader approached Innolect to help manage an escalating diversity issue in a division of a pharmaceutical company. The leader wanted to create a more inclusive work environment to increase employee engagement and retention.
Rather than offering the standard corporate diversity courses to a resistant and fatigued supervisory workforce, Innolect developed a highly interactive learning experience using an inclusiveness checklist, current film/television clips, and live testimonials to build a business case for involving and valuing talent. Supervisors examined their own behavior and explored how to think and behave in new ways.
Results: The supervisors pushed the organization to expand and offer the training to all levels of the organization. These same supervisors reported higher satisfaction scores from their employees and requested ongoing development opportunities to increase their diversity skills and capabilities.
Creating a Service Center Par Excellence
On the heels of a challenging merger, an international forest products company wanted to raise the performance of its account managers and launch a new service center. This company engaged Innolect to strengthen the level of service provided by key performers.
To create an unparalleled Service Center, Innolect developed a five-day customized training program delivered over six weeks to support the team through its challenging merger. Throughout the training and during the months after, we met with line managers to identify ways they could reinforce the training on the job. We also coached the managers individually to guide them through merger challenges, and supported the launch of the new Service Center.
Results: The grand opening of the new Service Center was a huge success with high ratings for learning new skills while having a good time — in the middle of a very chaotic merger. In spite of the unforeseen system glitches and many related problems caused by the merger, the company retained its customers — largely due to the partnership created between employees and customers.
Urgent Care for Healthcare Organization’s Revolving Door
A healthcare organization suffered a 24% turnover among employees during the first 180 days on the job. This statistic came at a tremendous expense for recruiting and training (estimated at 50% of annual salary), plus a disruption to workplace productivity. Innolect consultants:
- Created a three-tier retention initiative aimed at new hires;
- Helped train mentors who were assigned to every new employee;
- Developed a “3-3-3” project where each new employee was visited at 3 days, 3 weeks, and 3 months by an HR representative; during brief 10-minute encounters, questions and concerns were addressed and support was provided; and
- Created a mandatory 60-day feedback/evaluation for all employees with an abbreviated form.
Results: After three years, turnover among this group was reduced to a remarkable 11%.
Qualifying to Deliver Quality
Many companies aspire to become “world class.” Some engage the expertise and make the multi-year commitment to do so. In the midst of an economic downturn, a mid-size manufacturing company set upon what first seemed inconceivable. The goal was to sustain profits during the downturn, enter new markets, and launch a long-term initiative to be “world class.” The company’s leadership engaged Innolect consultants to strategize, facilitate and collaborate with several departments and internal Organizational Development staff. The initiative had four key transformational components:
- Make fundamental yet dramatic changes in the structure and system to reduce complexity;
- Move the culture to an emphasis on customer service and quality; and
- Utilize Baldrige and California Quality Awards as standards.
Results: The company won a Silver-level California Quality Award and a national Malcolm Baldrige Quality Award. The company sustained profits, achieved new market penetration during a weak economy, and positioned itself for future growth.
HR Efficiency for a Biotech
Businesses often play “systems” catch-up. A company grows and organizational mechanisms like HR systems are reconfigured to keep pace. One successful Biotech firm decided to reconfigure and refine — before the need arose.
This medium-sized Biotech research firm was poised for major growth, but internal systems were not aligned to accommodate the growth. The HR system had been cobbled together and was already outmoded. The question the Director of Administration put to Innolect consultants was: “What should we do to re-engineer our HR policies and procedures to accommodate growth?”
The first step was an extensive HR audit. The audit included assessing current HR policies, procedures and processes — from a legal and regulatory standpoint and a “best practices” perspective. The audit confirmed that current approaches resulted in duplications and gaps, and the situation would deteriorate in a high-growth environment.
To design a future HR system, Innolect consultants set a goal of reducing complexity — adding depth and breadth to the HR system while improving effectiveness and efficiency. This included:
- A new organizational chart
- Job descriptions
- Career ladders
- Performance measurements
- Employee policies/procedures
- Documentation system
Results: The Director of Administration reported greater leadership and employee satisfaction, and described the new system as making it “easier for the growing company to quickly fill roles with qualified candidates.”
Intervening In an Integration
Most mergers/acquisitions fail to achieve the goals originally set. An effective integration is one that is conducted in a disciplined, “planful” way and focused on both technical and cultural transformation. The right outside facilitation can save an integration. The Vice President, Business Development for a Telecommunications company faced two dilemmas.
Short-term, his team was struggling with the merger/acquisition of another company. Long-term, the VP worried that a failed integration risked total failure of the company. The VP engaged Innolect as senior design and facilitation consultants to rescue the integration process.
The goal was to achieve greater connectivity between the integration team’s work and the strategies and goals of the merger/acquisition and future business plan. Working with the VP and his team, Innolect consultants introduced a new level of strategic thinking and discipline into the integration including:
- A new merger/acquisition process map;
- Clarification of individual and team roles and responsibilities;
- Cross-functional problem-solving tools; and
- Leadership coaching.
Results: Integration leaders and team members became more focused, with clearer accountabilities. In-fighting diminished. Improvements included reductions in development cycle times and service delivery costs.