Home Group, a charity that provides not-for-profit housing to serve 200+ communities across the U.K, was not getting a return on investment for its market-competitive benefit programs.
The company’s 3,500 colleagues didn’t understand them, which resulted in low take-up and low appreciation - not a good combination. Something had to be done to communicate in a much more effective and engaging way.
No problem, right? Just throw some money into a communications campaign and you’ve solved it. Well, yes and no. As a charity in the social housing industry Home Group faced two challenges. The first was money — as in, the organization didn’t have a lot to spend on the communications, and the second was reach, as the majority of employees were out in the field supporting vulnerable adults in their communities. However, as Susan Coulson, Director of People, said,
If you think creatively and align with your strategy and social purpose, you can overcome these challenges.
And Home Group succeeded, seeing a 20% increase in perceptions of fairness and satisfaction with the employee reward offering, and a 216% increase in the overall take-up of benefits.
Home Group’s communication portal, named “Reward Scene,” is a street map-themed portal hosting benefit and recognition programs. It was designed to reflect the work in the community as well as weave in the fun side of Home Group’s culture. Divided into three zones — Benefits Boulevard, Hero Heights (Recognition) and Wellbeing Walk — the themed areas and street signs make it easy and fun for colleagues to navigate between their offerings.
According to Coulson,
We wanted a brand that colleagues could relate to, as well as making it easy to access by having no more than two clicks to access what you need.
Besides easy access, the other benefit of the portal was that it helped the organization’s remote workers feel less isolated. This award-winning communication strategy and approach shows the power of aligning communications with your purpose, creating a strong and lasting connection, and doing so in a very cost-effective way.