ANZ embarks on a social journey that leads to Yammer
Published Feb 11 2019 12:26 PM 11.2K Views

Australia New Zealand Banking Group (ANZ) was founded in 1835 and is the seventh largest company in Australia and the largest bank in New Zealand. With over 46,000 employees spread broadly throughout Australia and Asia, the ANZ communications team acted on a renewed desire to increase connection and engagement between their people.

Finding the right tool
ANZ had quickly outgrown their first social enterprise tool. They had learned valuable lessons about what employees needed and wanted and what had to be done to meet strict security and infrastructure requirements. After visiting with both Facebook and Microsoft, the team narrowed their search down to a head-to-head between Workplace by Facebook and Yammer, part of Office 365.

“It was pretty tempting… it felt like Facebook, looked like Facebook, and it was a great tool to use. We really liked it. But we wanted to make sure we explored all our options. I must admit, we were a little distracted by the shiny new tool.”
Alethea Reid, Head of Digital, Social and Technology Communications, ANZ


“Our team was split down the middle. Some of us assumed Workplace would be easier to use because it’s Facebook. The other assumption was Yammer was going to be far better at integration.” 
Alethea Reid, Head of Digital, Social and Technology Communications, ANZ


Not wanting to be swayed by the in-person demos and instinctual assumptions, the team took a human-centered design approach to selecting the right platform.


ANZ employees span four different generations and the assumption was tool preference would also be split down the middle. But after conducting deep-dive interviews, company-wide surveys, and third party-run user experience testing, Yammer came out as the clear winner over Workplace.


The same approach was used to gain a better understanding of insights and best practices that would drive employee engagement. A few of the “nuggets of truth” that came from their discovery were that a company-wide social environment could reduce the risk associated with employees using external social platforms for work purposes. It was important to employees to keep personal and work social engagement separate and Yammer felt more “work-y.” Employees wanted a place that was authentic and safe; a place that felt uniquely ANZ. In addition to these nuggets, the Yammer experience provided functionality and features their employees needed such as being mobile friendly, easy to use, and integrated into their other workflows and systems.


With the user experience at the center of ANZs decision making, vendor relationships and cost were removed from the decision making process. But a nice upside for ANZ - who have recently signed an Office 365 licensing agreement with Microsoft - they already owned Yammer. This allowed for funds that would have been spent on paying Workplace licensing fees being invested in a business development manager, four community managers and a robust change management approach.


The rollout
Lessons learned from past experiences combined with insights derived from a deep and thorough research process, plus great support from partner Engage², the team approached the Yammer launch with confidence and excitement. An example of how insights helped drive the launch was feedback from employees that they didn’t want managers telling them they had to use the tool. The approach was instead organic and purposeful. Yammer buttons were strategically placed throughout the intranet. Embedded links to active Yammer conversations were naturally seeded in existing employee communications. And value-driven invitations were extended to join communities of interest. Following a soft-launch to 22,000 employees in Australia adoption grew to nearly 40% within the first two weeks of making Yammer available.


ANZ Yammer.png


It was important to ensure the introduction of Yammer reflected the user-centric approach the team had utilized in their research. The visual campaign used to welcome employees was fresh, clean and, most importantly, human. Employees were encouraged to “find their voice”, be themselves, ask honest questions and be an active part of other’s solutions. Helpful tips such as short and sweet, ditch the corporate speak, swap stories and don’t spam drove the communications strategy. The community managers adding personal and proactive touch to network engagement. Coaching services were offered to leaders and executives to ensure communities were rich in content. Even the swag giveaways, such as t-shirts, phone wallets and power banks, were designed to reinforce the message of connection and community.


Soon after the launch, stories unfolded celebrating the impact of ANZs new social collaboration hub. Translation support for a customer was quickly found thanks to a Yammer post. Connection between branches was fast and fluid. Customer facing workers were able to connect directly with senior leaders. The CIO jumped in on a conversation that led to a speedy resolution to a seemingly complex technology problem.


While still in the early stages of adoption, ANZ is successfully using Yammer to connect their people and amplify company culture. ANZ believes Yammer can be a catalyst to help introduce and manage future change within the company as open and honest connection becomes a ubiquitous form of communication. Evidence of this can be found in the social groups on Yammer—they are really important to the ANZ culture as they facilitate community and communities are a key component in driving change.


“We realise social groups on Yammer are really important. Social builds community and communities drive change.”
Dan Haynes, Business Improvement Lead, Social Collaboration, ANZ


Hear more from the ANZ team in their session at Ignite 2018.

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