Joe Park, Chief Digital Architect and VP of Associate Digital Experience at Walmart, took to the Flow 2018 stage to share how Walmart is empowering associates with technologies like Workplace to build connections and communities.
When the largest private employer in the world makes a technology decision that could affect 2.3 million associates you’d be right to expect due diligence.
But what’s interesting about the Workplace deployment at Walmart says Joe Park, is how the familiarity of the Workplace platform helped make the decision easier.
“Workplace gave us a common platform, a common language”
“Workplace gave us a common platform, a common language,” Joe told his fellow panelists and the Flow 2018 audience. “Facebook invested 12 years into user experience R&D and we get to simply turn it on and all five generations of associates know how to use it.”
Ease of adoption
This meant Walmart could spend less time on the operational challenges, training and the customization that companies normally need to establish new technology in their complex organizations.
The result was quick adoption and development of strong working communities between the people using Workplace.
“We spent more time, liking and loving, crying and laughing,” Joe explains, “instead of having to figure out how to use the tool which can be a barrier. For us, that’s been terrific.”
“We spent more time, liking and loving, crying and laughing. For us, that’s been terrific.”
Empowering people with technology
Walmart believes in the idea of tech-empowered people. For Joe and his team, that means embracing technology to empower associates to better serve customers ‘with a human touch’. Using Workplace is helping Walmart to retain that focus.
“There’s a lot of great technologies out there today,” Joe says. “But if you lose sight of what it means to actually use it and what it takes – it won’t work.”
The immediacy of Workplace overcomes this obstacle. And it’s also helping new starters to build an immediate affinity with the global company culture.
“If I think about what’s come out of Workplace, my favorite is when new associates come in and are able to see the history and the evolution of the Workplace groups we have. That persistent memory helps them feel a part of the culture from day one. That’s a really neat thing to see.”
“That persistent memory helps them feel a part of the culture from day one”
It’s not just new starters that benefit. Tenured associates – people who have been in the Walmart family for 25 or 30 years – use Workplace groups to share their experiences and expertise.
Workplace Groups are collaboration spaces where work gets done. Assign tasks, share feedback, tag colleagues and post updates. Create as many groups as you need – all with secure file sharing and unlimited storage.
Posted by Workplace by Facebook on Thursday, September 27, 2018
“It’s become the norm. It’s lost its novelty,” Joe suggests. “For us, that’s when we know the platform is working. When it’s not a one-off win but rather an everyday occurrence.”
Using Workplace to improve processes
As the Workplace deployment continues through the organization, Joe and his team are turning their attention to using Workplace to streamline processes.
“I wouldn’t give all credit to the platform, but we’ve seen a 60% drop in informational requests.”
“We took a look at our data and saw on a yearly basis we have hundreds of thousands of requests to our helpdesk,” Joe explains. The result of this analysis was to launch a new chatbot (in beta) for technology and HR requests.
“It’s really made an improvement. I wouldn’t give all credit to the platform, but we’ve seen a 60% drop in informational requests.”
“For us, Workplace has gone beyond communication. It’s actually helping us solve problems.”
The effect of this is considerable. People are using Workplace to ask each other questions and provide even better solutions.
“We’ve created product management groups and we’re crowd-sourcing all the help. For us, Workplace has gone beyond communication. It’s actually helping us solve problems.”
With big thanks to Joe Park, Walmart