With a broad pool of talent and resources spread across several geographical locations, Corix was encountering challenges with communication and collaboration between teams, especially after new hires, mergers and acquisitions. There was no shortage of staff experience or information to meet customer needs, but connecting them in a timely fashion was proving to be difficult with their existing systems.
Their existing corporate intranet was managed by central webmasters, and contained only information from head office. It was clear that they needed to overhaul their information sharing system to be much more efficient and inclusive of the entire organization. They had been using email and file sharing, but information was often repeated "just in case"– a practice that wasted everyone's time while desensitizing them to the information.
To address these issues, Corix knew they needed a more efficient way to share information and collaborate between locations and to ensure that whichever solution they chose would be scalable to accommodate the company's rapid growth. They also wanted to find a reliable partner to guide them through the setup, deployment and adoption of the new system in a way that would impact business as little as possible.
As Microsoft users to begin with, Corix decided that SharePoint would be a great solution to their problems. It could grow with the company as needed, and could integrate with existing systems rather than being a standalone app.
When choosing a partner to customize and implement SharePoint, Corix wanted to go with an organization that shared their business philosophies and found that Softlanding was a natural choice.
"Corix is a nimble, market-focused organization and we needed a partner that matched," said Carol Wozney, Vice President and CIO, Information Technology Services. "Softlanding fit well with the Corix approach. I felt the two organizations were like-minded."
SharePoint implementation at Corix followed the proven successful Softlanding approach: Envisioning, Planning, Building, Stabilization & Deployment, and Support. In order to drive value for individuals and the organization, the team canvassed all business lines to find out what they needed and what information should be shared across all departments.
Because the new system would be populated with information on a volunteer basis, the team needed to demonstrate the value in this process. To do so, they launched the "People Finder" project, which required employees to add their information under the assumption that the more everyone knew about their coworkers, the more everyone would benefit. All information would be used strictly for business purposes.
During this process, work began on the company's new intranet, which was initially populated with existing information from the old intranet. Softlanding created publishing sites, so each department at Corix could gain visibility across the organization, distribute workloads more efficiently, and update their own content according to corporate guidelines. The intranet was also built on the SharePoint platform to ensure a cohesive system.
Voluntary adoption was a slow and steady process, but soon Corix staff began to realize the benefits of the new system and adoption rates increased. They enjoyed the balance of corporate governance and the self-serve features. Throughout the process, Softlanding was there to address any issues and offer support to ensure the new system's success.
The benefits of the new SharePoint system were numerous, from better use of resources to improved communication efficiency and organizational performance.
"Search has been a major benefit," says Wozney. "Just having search features within SharePoint allows staff to find content and update it in seconds. In the past, we didn't have that, so content got stale. It was too difficult and time consuming."
This feature even demonstrated its value in a real emergency situation where engineers needed to use a machine with controls and manuals in Japanese. They put out a request for someone who could read Japanese, and within an hour, they had a translation and the safety issue was resolved.
Other benefits included reduction of load on mail servers, since people could reference content via links rather than sending attachments. Corix also noted that the integration of "People Finder" and the new intranet made the onboarding process much easier and the company much better equipped to handle its rapid growth.