StaffConnect, the leading provider of mobile employee engagement solutions, today announced that the Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB)is implementing the StaffConnect employee engagement platform to replace email as its primary channel for internal communication for frontline NHS workers in North Wales. Using StaffConnect, the organisation can better share information, success stories, care standards, employee recognition and more, among a diverse workforce of 17,000 dispersed employees working in multiple communities and 38 different hospitals, healthcare centres and offices. The solution is being rolled out in a phased approach across its distributed locations, with the core communications team spending time in each location to launch the platform and get instant feedback from as many employees as possible.
The publically funded organisation provides healthcare to more than 760,000 people, valuing the key principle that good healthcare should be available to all, regardless of wealth. BCUHB is constantly looking for ways to improve the essential services it provides and leverage new technology in the workplace.
Research carried out by the health board’s communications team found that staff who have limited access to email, or even a computer, found it difficult to access essential news and information from the organisation.
In 2017, the BCUHB conducted an internal survey among 1,400 employees to solicit feedback about how they wanted to receive communications at work. While the responses collected digitally indicated that email was the preferred method, the feedback received through face-to-face meetings revealed that many staff did not have access to the organisation’s digital resources. Furthermore, many employees, such as nurses, had little opportunity to monitor emails, as patient care is their top priority.
The survey also identified a positive response to the option of having a mobile platform to better reach a large number of non-desk employees. BCUHB was looking for a solution capable of reaching its entire workforce and not dependent on staff having access to a computer or company network during their normal working day to be able to access it. To meet its requirements the solution had to be mobile and offer access to communications both from home and through a personal device.
“Historically, information and company updates have mainly been shared through a weekly newsletter via email, to all staff,” said Aaron Haley, Communications Officer, BCUHB. “While that works for our desk-based staff, we know that there’s a big contingency of our workforce who just can’t find the time to get on to a computer as part of their working day. We wanted the new internal communications tool to be completely voluntary, and we wanted to demonstrate our commitment to improving internal communications with a platform that meets the needs of all our employees, regardless of their role or location.”
We had an ambition to develop an app which could securely house messages currently being shared on our email and intranet, and found that StaffConnect ticked all of the boxes.”
In January 2019, BCUHB began implementing the StaffConnect solution to community workers and district hospitals as part of a phased roll out across the six North Wales counties of Anglesey, Gwynedd, Conwy, Denbighshire, Flintshire, and Wrexham.
Approximately 2,500 community-based employees were added in each of the Health Board’s three area divisions, before reaching out to more than 4,500 employees at each of the hospital’s three main hospital sites.
BCUHB is using the StaffConnect platform to encourage employee recognition by integrating existing internal recognition as well as encouraging more informal peer-to-peer recognition. The platform is also providing a way for hospitals and wards to share information around care standards, as well as service notices.
Staff had previously expressed difficulties in finding a way of sharing information and notices with different groups of staff in an equal way. With StaffConnect, they now have a platform that enables this critical exchange of information, regardless of where they work.
User adoption is rapidly growing, with more than 3,700 members of staff registering to access the platform over the first four weeks. StaffConnect’s Customer Success program has played a vital role helping BCUHB develop community and a content strategy for building out the platform.
“We are extremely pleased with how well the implementation of StaffConnect’s platform is going and have received very positive feedback from employees,” said Aaron Haley, Communications Officer. “We know our people but StaffConnect’s Customer Success program provides an outside perspective on best practices for content and communication, which has been really helpful and valuable to us. We’re also encouraging staff to offer their input on how to do things better and how they see the platform working for them. I am highly enthusiastic about this two-way communications approach that will have a positive impact on NHS staff and workforce culture.”
“With a large, field-based workforce and, in many cases, limited access to email, BCUHB represents how StaffConnect is able to add huge value to organisations with large numbers of deskless workers. Seeing first-hand how our platform is able to unify communications so that everyone can receive and share information equally is a really powerful testimony to how BCUHB is using new technology to improve the employee experience,” said Geraldine Osman, CMO, StaffConnect.
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