Heidelberg Materials (previously known as HeidelbergCement) is a leading manufacturer and supplier of heavy building materials such as cement, concrete, and stone and rock materials to the building and construction sector, with 53,000 employees and operations worldwide. The Northern Europe region comprises eight countries in the Nordic and Baltic countries. Long-term sustainability at all levels is one of the pillars in the organization, both in terms of environmental impact and use of natural resources, and in terms of safety and health for their co-workers.
The Mission: To maximize the ROI on their IT investment
The local IT department in the Northern Europe region realized in connection with the rollout of Microsoft 365 within the company, that there was a need for further training and development. To maximize the investment, the employees first needed to be shown the benefits of the new tools and then be offered training on new digital ways of working with Microsoft 365. The group already provided a training program on a global level, but this was aimed at more dedicated users who looked to further deepen their understanding on their own accord. There was no form of education at a more local level, or in Swedish.
“Through experience, we know that local language is important if we really want to reach out and avoid creating unnecessary barriers for our users – especially for those who just want it ‘to work’, who do not enjoy learning the functionality as such”, explains Emma Sjöberg, Head of Communications Heidelberg Materials Northern Europe.
“We got in touch with Storyals and saw that with the help of their Storyals Lite product, we were able to effectively reach a large number of our employees who can then absorb the material when it suits them, when the need arises”, Emma continues.
Largely due to this focus on reaching all users in the region, early on and at a basic level, Heidelberg Materials succeeded in streamlining communication and improving collaboration among its co-workers, thus kick-starting the journey towards a healthy ROI on its IT investment.
Heidelberg Materials chose to work with Storyals Lite, giving users access to Storyals educational materials and courses. They started by holding introductory meetings via Teams, and then offered three webinars, each with a different focus, throughout the year, where Storyals’ productivity coaches showed examples of working methods and answered questions in real time. Each webinar attracted about 150 participants and the feedback afterwards shows that the content of the education was at a good level that made it easily accessible to most.
In addition to Storyals Lite, Heidelberg Materials also invested in a Training Program, including the so called “Digital Gym” - a forum in Teams where employees can ask questions and get answers and tips from Storyals’ productivity coaches.
"Several of our employees have now started working with OneDrive and SharePoint and see the benefits of this,” says Emma. “They are now very familiar with attaching links instead of static attachments in emails.”
Importance of appreciating different starting points
As in most workplaces, not everyone enjoys exploring new opportunities and ways of working. Emma suggests some may feel that all new technical tools add an extra workload and frustration, while others believe their work has become more fun and more creative. Hence, all team members have different starting points.
“It is important that those who train in this area have an understanding and appreciation for people’s behaviors and driving forces, that they communicate at a level that works for the masses,” she continues. “It is not possible to convince or persuade anyone to change their way of working from one day to the next, you risk the opposite effect, and scaring them away. Then the distance becomes larger and the threshold higher. I think that Storyals’ productivity coaches have put their education at a level that clearly ensures that we as a customer get our entire team onboard the digital journey.”
Finally, Emma Sjöberg is particularly pleased with how Storyals’ products remain relevant.
"Normally, an IT-related course will soon become old news, but I do not see that as a risk with Storyals’ courses. As the tools develop and the needs change, their products are continuously updated.”