The employee app of AWO Saarland was honored as one of the best employee apps. It was nominated in the “Mobile Intranet” category and ultimately took 2nd place behind the employee app of Tübingen University Hospital.
Since COVID-19 at the latest, a social intranet is no longer something that passes for a unique selling point. But the approach behind “AWO – Gut zu Wissen” is.
Even before the pandemic and the associated wave of home offices in Germany, AWO Saarland was already facing the challenges that can now be felt everywhere.
Most of the approximately 5,200 employees and 15,000 members do not have the classic desktop workstation. Instead, people are on the move: in home care, in child, youth and family welfare facilities, in care for the elderly or in integration assistance. The pandemic has also shifted more administrative staff to the home office.
Enabling open communication in all directions, i.e. not just the flow of information from top to bottom, but also across all areas and, above all, enabling interaction with each other and developing ideas together, these were the reasons for the new “Gut zu Wissen” intranet plus app, for all smartphones, whether official or private.
AWO Saarland, a provider of social assistance services with around 310 facilities in Saarland, started the project with this claim together with NEOCOSMO and its PIIPE Workplace platform. The goal was an intranet by and for employees, in line with the motto “Less I and a little more we”. In the project, which already started in 2019, special emphasis was placed on ensuring that the solution was not only designed to be visually appealing for everyone, but also that the sensitive topic of data protection was not neglected.
The sophisticated rights management of “Gut zu Wissen” makes it possible to reconcile target group-specific communication and data protection. Information can only be accessed by the appropriate groups and is invisible to all other users. In so-called groups, employees can exchange information asynchronously and develop ideas together.
A special feature of the AWO is above all the topic of video: Around 30% of internal communication takes place via video, be it messages from the management to the employees on how to deal with COVID-19 or explanatory videos. “With the ‘AWO Gut zu Wissen’ app, we fortunately already had a tool at hand for the Corona crisis to reach our employees. Since they mainly work with people on the move, we were able to provide them with up-to-date knowledge on how to deal with COVID-19 in a digital way and enter into a dialog with them,” says Jürgen Nieser, managing director of AWO Saarland.
All of this was made possible without a fixed project structure: Instead of rigid project plans, work was done in agile sprints with evaluation rounds in each project phase, including direct feedback from employees. In this way, user behavior could be recorded immediately and adjustments made, which resulted in an enormous saving of resources in the course of the project and increased acceptance of the solution.
After two years of use and further development, the app has become well established and will continue to support communication within AWO Saarland for a long time to come.