Since 2012, the Swedish Equestrian Federation has been looking for ways of working smarter and more efficiently, adopting modern technology and changing behaviors. The new digital workplace needed to be tailored around the changing needs of the organization, and Storyals’ adoption and learning solutions proved to be the perfect fit.
With 850 clubs spread across the country, and a total of 100 employees in the district and central offices, there was a clear need for training on how to use these new digital tools more effectively. The Swedish Equestrian Federation first started working with Microsoft Office back in 2015, using only the basic applications. The addition of Teams in Microsoft 365 was an important turning point just prior to the pandemic outbreak. This is when they found Storyals.
Story-based learning is a perfect fit
Bill Smith, responsible for IT and digitalization, found Storyals on YouTube and immediately knew that this type of story-based learning was a perfect fit for their organization.
Having story-based learning with real-life scenarios is suitable for our way of working. You can do it wherever, one module at a Time like building blocks. With staff already having full agendas, and in some cases also partial layoffs due to COVID, this flexible setup was the best fit for us, says Bill.
Currently, the Swedish Equestrian Federation is using two of Storyals’ services and products. One is Storyals LMS365 which includes a Learning Management System that enables the organization to create and publish its own courses directed to selected employees. The second is an added Training Program, giving them access to a "Digital Gym", offering employees a digital Teams forum where they can post questions directly to Storyals Productivity Experts and get answers and weekly productivity tips. The gym is run in Swedish to accommodate the employees and better serve them in their native language.
Well prepared for the rapid transformation
Despite the rapid transformation due to the pandemic, Bill Smith explains they were well prepared since they had already started using Teams and Microsoft 365 before the lockdown. "Luckily, we decided to go all in when it comes to Teams before the pandemic. So, we were ready when it happened. All the required infrastructure was in place, so the transition was rather quick. But we realized training would be key in this process", says Bill.
Elin Gustavson started her new job as a sustainability coordinator during the pandemic. It has been challenging to undertake a new role from home and with only a digital workplace she says. Still, she is very impressed by how well it went, and the potential of making the organization’s work more efficient thanks to Storyals’ training courses.
Bringing colleagues closer together
As of today, most of the 100 employees across the entire organization have completed selected Storyals’ courses. Both Bill and Elin agree that the internal collaboration across the organization has improved significantly, mostly thanks to the adoption of new ways of working.
Although working from home has its difficulties, Elin says that it has brought the colleagues closer within the geographically widespread organization. Teams has enabled the colleagues to have faster and more frequent contact with each other.
I think we all agree that we miss our social gatherings. We miss going to the office rather than staying at home all day. But I don’t think many would say that “we need to go back to the office to do a better job” or that “we need to wait until the pandemic ends before we can work properly.” Nobody is making these arguments and that is awesome, says Elin.
Work has become more efficient
Furthermore, the shift to digital tools has made the organization more efficient. Nowadays, they create more digital content which is more easily distributed than printed material.
“What I have noticed over time is that we are working more centralized and as a unit. We produce a lot more digital content compared to a few years ago, which naturally speeds up the process and keeps the information fresh”, says Bill. He has also noticed that people are digging deeper into their digital toolboxes and becoming more comfortable with the new ways of working.
"It makes me really excited to see when people catch on and realize that the change is not bad once they get used to it. They realize it enables them to work more efficiently and maybe even have a little fun at the same time", says Bill with a smile. He is currently thinking about creating a more specific curriculum in LMS365, tailored for various situations, such as courses for onboarding new employees.
Investing to reach their full potential
The digital transformation has been a giant leap so far, but there is still work to be done. A key success factor is making sure the employees have the time, motivation, and mandate to invest in learning more about their digital toolbox.
The support of management is key. So that we include all employees and improve as a group. With Storyals LMS365 and the Digital Gym, we lower the threshold to learning and make it more accessible for everyone, Bill explains.
What is nice with sports organizations like the Swedish Equestrian Federation is that people are very dedicated and competitive, so once they put their mind to it, they usually succeed.
“We understand the importance of education and believe our work with Storyals will increase efficiency and ultimately help us reach our goals”, says Bill. “Having story-based learning with real-life scenarios is suitable for our way of working. You can do it wherever, one module at a time – like building blocks! With the staff already having full agendas, and in some cases also partial layoffs due to COVID, this flexible setup was the best fit for us”, Bill concludes.