How Ricoh’s HR Team Reduced Admin and Improved Agility with Peakon

How Ricoh’s HR Team Reduced Admin and Improved Agility with Peakon
Ricoh Australia started with fax machines in 1967; today they empower some of Australia’s largest corporations and government departments with a world-class range of workplace technology, managed business services and IT solutions. One of the reasons Ricoh Australia has been so successful is because they have an intimate understanding of how technology impacts the way people work. They are always looking for new ways of improving productivity and innovation in order to stay competitive. Ricoh’s HR team – known internally as People & Purpose – applies the same approach to their people strategy. They have become pacesetters for adopting new technology and solutions that “make work life better” for people throughout their business. In the past it would take 3 or 4 months to process the results of an engagement survey and share them with the rest of the business. Employees felt their feedback was going nowhere, managers had very little to act on, and the HR team was stuck in an endless cycle. Mark Deayton, CHRO at Ricoh Australia, explains why he decided to replace their previous provider, how the platform enables his team to work in a more agile way, and what results they have been able to achieve as a result of using Peakon.

Key results

  • Ricoh’s HR team eliminated at least 100 hours of admin that would usually be spent on data analysis, workshop preparation, creating presentations, and writing internal communications for each survey round.
  • Since introducing Peakon in May 2019, Ricoh’s Communication engagement driver has increased from 6.2 to 7.3 – moving them from the bottom 25% of industry peers to the top 25%. These improvements happened as the result of ~16,000 employee comments.
  • Ricoh’s Recognition driver score improved from 6.4 to 7.3 after introducing a new recognition program in April 2019. This is even more significant when you look at the eNPS (Employee Net Promoter Score) for Recognition – which increased from -18 to +14 in the same timeframe.

Mark’s Story

In search of an agile engagement solution

Before joining Ricoh, I’d worked for organisations that were using Aon Hewitt and Gallup. One of my ongoing frustrations with those tools, whether we were using them annually or on a more regular basis, was the fact that there’s a lot of work to be done in between every survey. To use an Australian phrase, it felt like we were painting the Sydney Harbour Bridge. By the time you crunched all the data and put it into a format that could be shared with your employees and managers, it was time for the next survey.
[Using Peakon] means we can survey more often, provide more feedback to our people, and act on the results without a delay of 3 or 4 months.
When I joined Ricoh I encountered the same scenario with our previous provider. It took us 3 or 4 months to get all of our data into a format that could be analysed and presented to the rest of the business. That’s when I decided to see what else was out there. When I came across Peakon, it made me realise that the big names corporates have been using for a couple of decades are not the only products out there. We’re a print company — that’s our legacy — but people are printing less so our traditional industry is being disrupted. We’re going through so much change that having all of the analysis done in real time by the Peakon platform means we can survey more often, provide more feedback to our people, and act on the results without a delay of 3 or 4 months.

Solving problems through two-way conversations

A game changer for us was the ability to have two-way feedback. In the past, employees would complain because they were telling us the same things over and over again, without any way of knowing if we were listening, let alone acting on their feedback. This is a common view expressed about engagement surveys in general. Peakon gave us a way to not only capture and automatically analyse feedback from our employees, but also respond to them — whether it was a simple “We’re working on it”, or the person’s manager being able to explain the actions being taken. Now when we launch new initiatives or make specific changes, we also point out that what we’re doing is in direct response to the feedback submitted in Peakon. There’s a link there, which validates an engagement survey in the eyes of employees as something that helps them improve their experience – rather than just being a tick-box exercise. The fact that people feel we’re listening has been a real driver of engagement.

Validating new initiatives with employee feedback

Around the same time that we moved from our previous provider to Peakon, we launched a new recognition program. Our scores for the recognition driver in Peakon improved instantly, and people were commenting to say how much they appreciated the new platform. That not only vindicated the choice of platform, it validated the feedback from Peakon as a way to measure and track the success of our initiatives. Another area we’ve been able to improve is communication. In the beginning our scores were very low, and we had received specific feedback related to our Intranet and the need for more visibility from senior leaders. After rolling out a series of new communication initiatives, not only have we seen the scores improve for our communication sub-driver, the specific feedback we’ve received from people in the comments has allowed us to fine tune what we’re doing.