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Workplace from Facebook a ‘Happy Place’ for franchisees

Since opening its doors in Brisbane in 1989, The Coffee Club has become Australia’s largest home-grown café group. With 450 stores throughout 13 countries and upwards of 40 million dedicated customers walking through its doors each year, the company’s vision is to offer the most ‘connected cafe experience’ for its customers, and to be their ‘happy place’.

Craving Connection

In order to provide the best customer experience, The Coffee Club’s leadership knew they needed to connect and engage employees across the organization, from corporate employees to franchise partners and team members in store. But with franchises making up 97% of their network of stores, and a diverse, mostly frontline workforce, effective and timely communication has always been a challenge.  

The separation between Head Office and the frontline made it challenging to collect valuable feedback, collaborate between stores, showcase good work and champion subject-matter experts. With a better-connected culture, The Coffee Club could use insights from the frontline to deliver a best-in-class customer experience, but they needed a way to break down geographic and store-based silos so their people could share, grow and learn together. 

Craving Connection

In order to provide the best customer experience, The Coffee Club’s leadership knew they needed to connect and engage employees across the organization, from corporate employees to franchise partners and team members in store. But with franchises making up 97% of their network of stores, and a diverse, mostly frontline workforce, effective and timely communication has always been a challenge.  

The separation between Head Office and the frontline made it challenging to collect valuable feedback, collaborate between stores, showcase good work and champion subject-matter experts. With a better-connected culture, The Coffee Club could use insights from the frontline to deliver a best-in-class customer experience, but they needed a way to break down geographic and store-based silos so their people could share, grow and learn together. 

Digging into the data

An employee survey conducted before launching Workplace told The Coffee Club team that 47% of store staff sometimes or never received updates and information from head office, 41% did not feel at all connected to team members in other stores, and 73% felt somewhat or not at all connected to head office staff. Promisingly, 85% said they would like the opportunity to feel more connected with others in the business on a two-way communication platform.

Not only were Coffee Club employees crying out for better company communications, they also wanted the opportunity to make connections with other store members. 

At the same time, The Coffee Club was embarking on an expansion of their network as well as a full brand refresh for which they needed to understand the full customer experience. Engaging their franchise stakeholders in this process was critical to getting the best outcome. 

Digging into the data

An employee survey conducted before launching Workplace told The Coffee Club team that 47% of store staff sometimes or never received updates and information from head office, 41% did not feel at all connected to team members in other stores, and 73% felt somewhat or not at all connected to head office staff. Promisingly, 85% said they would like the opportunity to feel more connected with others in the business on a two-way communication platform.

Not only were Coffee Club employees crying out for better company communications, they also wanted the opportunity to make connections with other store members. 

At the same time, The Coffee Club was embarking on an expansion of their network as well as a full brand refresh for which they needed to understand the full customer experience. Engaging their franchise stakeholders in this process was critical to getting the best outcome. 

Delivering on the vision to stay connected through COVID

With a newly formed project team headed by Chief Operations Officer, Brian Finch and with members from across Internal Communications, Human Resources, Training and Operational Excellence, The Coffee Club assessed a number of different communication and collaboration tools. It became clear that Workplace was the platform that would help The Coffee Club deliver on their vision by bringing the pulse of the business to the forefront and giving frontline staff a way to engage meaningfully with the company’s leaders. 

“Our decision to work with Enablo to launch Workplace to our entire network was an easy one to make and was received with instant support from our CEO and senior leadership team.”

Brian Finch, Chief Operations Officer, Minor DKL (The Coffee Club).

Planning their launch to all users in March 2020, The Coffee Club faced major challenges with the onset of COVID-19 forcing dining restrictions, cafe closures, and large numbers of teams being furloughed. But, rather than hitting pause, The Coffee Club’s leadership saw that it was even more important to stay connected in these turbulent times, and forged ahead with their launch plans, rolling Workplace out to over 3,000 users across head office, franchise partners and store team members by the end of July.

Delivering on the vision to stay connected through COVID

With a newly formed project team headed by Chief Operations Officer, Brian Finch, and with members from across Internal Communications, Human Resources, Training and Operational Excellence, The Coffee Club assessed a number of different communication and collaboration tools. It became clear that Workplace was the platform that would help the Coffee Club deliver on their vision by bringing the pulse of the business to the forefront and giving frontline staff a way to engage meaningfully with the company’s leaders. 

“Our decision to work with Enablo to launch Workplace to our entire network was an easy one to make and was received with instant support from our CEO and senior leadership team.”

Brian Finch, Chief Operations Officer, Minor DKL (The Coffee Club).

Planning their launch to all users in March 2020, The Coffee Club faced major challenges with the onset of COVID-19 forcing dining restrictions, cafe closures, and large numbers of teams being furloughed. But, rather than hitting pause, The Coffee Club’s leadership saw that it was even more important to stay connected in these turbulent times, and forged ahead with their launch plans, rolling Workplace out to over 3,000 users across head office, franchise partners and store team members by the end of July.

%

of team members in store now receive updates

%

feel connected to team members in other stores

Overnight impact

The Coffee Club reached their onboarding target within three months and now have approximately 80% of their people active on Workplace. Of these users, around 75% are monthly active. 

A follow up employee survey conducted six months after the launch of Workplace has shown that 85% of team members in store now receive updates regularly, 77% feel connected to team members in other stores and 68% feel connected to staff in head office. 

CEO of Minor DKL, Nick Bryden says “Workplace has redefined the way we communicate and connect with our people and key partners.

“The positive effects that the platform has had on our network, at one of the most challenging times in its history, has been profound and we continue to see growth in engagement and connection each week.”

“We went from one-way communication through emails, an intranet and weekly newsletters to instant, two-way communication that was personal, easy and rewarding for all users. Workplace has also been an incredible tool to stay connected during a time of isolation.

“We are confident that our better informed, engaged, and well-connected community will deliver the best and ‘most connected’ experience in store for our customers,” says Nick. 

With an average of 65% of Franchisees watching Nick’s fortnightly streams, his CEO updates have been an invaluable tool to drive engagement with the business, brand and leadership team.

“The positive effects that [Workplace] has had on our network, at one of the most challenging times in its history, has been profound and we continue to see growth in engagement and connection each week.”

Nick Bryden
CEO, Minor DKL (The Coffee Club).

CEO of Minor DKL, Nick Bryden says “Workplace has redefined the way we communicate and connect with our people and key partners.

“The positive effects that the platform has had on our network, at one of the most challenging times in its history, has been profound and we continue to see growth in engagement and connection each week.”

“We went from one-way communication through emails, an intranet and weekly newsletters to instant, two-way communication that was personal, easy and rewarding for all users. Workplace has also been an incredible tool to stay connected during a time of isolation.

“We are confident that our better informed, engaged, and well-connected community will deliver the best and ‘most connected’ experience in store for our customers,” says Nick. 

With an average of 65% of Franchisees watching Nick’s fortnightly streams, his CEO updates have been an invaluable tool to drive engagement with the business, brand and leadership team.

“The positive effects that [Workplace] has had on our network, at one of the most challenging times in its history, has been profound and we continue to see growth in engagement and connection each week.”

Nick Bryden
CEO, Minor DKL (The Coffee Club).

As part of a wider brand refresh that coincided with COVID-19, The Coffee Club has used Workplace to test new product ideas and consult with stores on the new brand which has led to innovation across the network. 

Franchise owner of The Coffee Club Kippa-Ring in Brisbane, Anthony West says, “I work seven days a week, I could be working in the kitchen, mopping the floors or serving tables. Workplace makes it so easy to hear what’s going on across the network and to contribute, without having to break my routine. It’s so easy to use and it’s all there on my phone in my pocket.

“With Workplace, there is no corporate hierarchy, everyone is on the same level, whether that’s a trainee in the kitchen, a manager in Head Office, the CEO or a Director. Communication is direct and open, creating a level playing field which is incredibly positive and beneficial for culture. 

“When it comes to innovation, Workplace is great too. Everything we do in store is visual – whether that’s a promotion, a new menu, or product development. We can post the details on Workplace, accompanied by photos, links and documents and get people’s feedback,” Anthony says. 

Workplace has also been a place to celebrate wins and milestones such as store birthdays, give recognition and connect people over special interests such as through the ‘Kids of TCC’ group.  

As part of a wider brand refresh that coincided with COVID-19, The Coffee Club has used Workplace to test new product ideas and consult with stores on the new brand which has led to innovation across the network. 

Franchise owner of The Coffee Club Kippa-Ring, Brisbane, Anthony West says, “I work seven days a week, I could be working in the kitchen, mopping the floors or serving tables. Workplace makes it so easy to hear what’s going on across the network and to contribute, without having to break my routine. It’s so easy to use and it’s all there on my phone in my pocket.

“With Workplace, there is no corporate hierarchy, everyone is on the same level, whether that’s a trainee in the kitchen, a manager in Head Office, the CEO or a Director. Communication is direct and open, creating a level playing field which is incredibly positive and beneficial for culture. 

“When it comes to innovation, Workplace is great too. Everything we do in store is visual – whether that’s a promotion, a new menu, or product development. We can post the details on Workplace, accompanied by photos, links and documents and get people’s feedback.”

Workplace has also been a place to celebrate wins and milestones such as store birthdays, give recognition and connect people over special interests such as through the ‘Kids of TCC’ group.  

Just the beginning

The Coffee Club has big plans for embedding Workplace even further and expanding the use of the platform.

“One of our main objectives is to break down the barriers between head office and franchisees, so we’ll be encouraging more live streaming by our leadership team and more live streams directly from stores,” says Jessica Crokidas, Internal Communications, Minor DKL. 

“We’re also looking at how we can run our quarterly roadshows virtually on Workplace. THere’s some great features that we’re excited to leverage like groups, polls, crowdsourcing and livestreaming to engage everyone across both head office and franchisees in this event. This content will continue to live on Workplace to watch at a later date and refer back to,” says Jessica. 

The Coffee Club will also leverage Enablo’s Campaign bot to support their communications campaigns. 

The bot allows Workplace administrators to pre-load messages and calls to action into a central system and send these out via Workplace chat messages to the entire organisation, or targeted teams of people. 

“One of the things we’re looking to use the Campaign bot for is launching our new menus, which we do multiple times a year,” says Jessica. 

“With each launch, there’s a training component, a need to update Point of Sale systems and have stock and staff ready to go.

“With Campaign bot, we’ll be able to set everything up ahead of time and then it will look after itself. It’s also really useful for targeting particular teams, or areas who might need additional support,” says Jessica.

“With Workplace, there is no corporate hierarchy, everyone is on the same level, whether that’s a trainee in the kitchen, a manager in Head Office, the CEO or a Director. Communication is direct and open, creating a level playing field which is incredibly positive and beneficial for culture.”

– Anthony West
Franchise Owner, The Coffee Club Kippa-Ring

Just the beginning

The Coffee Club has big plans for embedding Workplace even further and expanding the use of the platform.

“One of our main objectives is to break down the barriers between head office and franchisees, so we’ll be encouraging more live streaming by our leadership team and more live streams directly from stores,” says Jessica Crokidas, Internal Communications, Minor DKL. 

“We’re also looking at how we can run our quarterly roadshows virtually on Workplace. THere’s some great features that we’re excited to leverage like groups, polls, crowdsourcing and livestreaming to engage everyone across both head office and franchisees in this event. This content will continue to live on Workplace to watch at a later date and refer back to,” says Jessica. 

The Coffee Club will also leverage Enablo’s Campaign bot to support their communications campaigns. 

The bot allows Workplace administrators to pre-load messages and calls to action into a central system and send these out via Workplace chat messages to the entire organisation, or targeted teams of people. 

“One of the things we’re looking to use the Campaign bot for is launching our new menus, which we do multiple times a year,” says Jessica. 

“With each launch, there’s a training component, a need to update Point of Sale systems and have stock and staff ready to go.

“With Campaign bot, we’ll be able to set everything up ahead of time and then it will look after itself. It’s also really useful for targeting particular teams, or areas who might need additional support,” says Jessica.

“With Workplace, there is no corporate hierarchy, everyone is on the same level, whether that’s a trainee in the kitchen, a manager in Head Office, the CEO or a Director. Communication is direct and open, creating a level playing field which is incredibly positive and beneficial for culture.”

– Anthony West
Franchise Owner, The Coffee Club Kippa-Ring

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