Child & Family Resources initiates new intranet project during pandemic

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About Child & Family Resources

Child & Family Resources Inc. (CFR) is a community based, non-profit, human services organization serving communities across Arizona. Services include home visitations for pregnant and parenting families, access to quality childcare, support for high quality childcare providers, substance abuse prevention, sexual health education, and support for parents of youth.

CFR reaches an average of 45,000 Arizonans across 15 counties per year and has 230 dedicated employees who are reflective of the communities they serve. They are proud to provide high quality, culturally responsive, and trauma informed services.

COVID-19 pushes team to prioritize new intranet launch

Originally, CFR had a basic intranet solution that utilized Microsoft Access for data storage. In May 2017, they became an Intranet Connections customer, but organizational challenges prevented them from implementing their new intranet.

Along came the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2020. While updating their internal communications system and platforms had been part of their strategic plan for some time, COVID-19 gave the CFR team the push to make it happen.

We were looking for something that was user friendly, used recent technology, and was customizable by our small internal communications team. So far, the product has met our needs and the availability of the support team at IC has helped us to meet our goals.

– Margaret Palmer, Performance and Quality Improvement Director

Launching the new intranet project

IC invited CFR to launch their new intranet project through a process called the Tailored Experience in September 2020. CFR immediately saw the value in partnering with IC’s in-house experts to help manage their timeline and tasks, handle change during a pandemic, and even work on initiatives they had not considered when originally planning their project.

Mandate & governance documents

CFR started their process by working on their mandate and governance documents. It was very important to the whole team to establish responsibilities and get clarity around the mandate of the intranet. The team also understood the importance of having leadership buy-in, and for that they brought in their Vice President of HR—their Chief Administrative Officer—to a few meetings in the role of executive sponsor.

Based on CFR’s time availability and needs, it was decided that their intranet project would have two phases. Phase one would be focused on documents and user experience while phase two would be focused on forms.

Phase one: documents & user experience

In phase one, IC and CFR focused on the best way to manage documents and make them accessible to the right users within the new intranet. Another important piece for CFR was a centralized organizational calendar. They wanted to make sure all employees had access to everything that was happening in the organization.

Lastly, CFR focused on the home page layout based on the best practices included in their Internal Communications Audit Report and the meetings they had with IC’s Communications Specialist, Erin Raimondo. The CFR team was very diligent when choosing colors, widgets, and the overall layout.

Before the launch of phase one, which took place at the end of November 2020, CFR also worked with IC’s Communications Specialist to develop a communication plan.

I think that our phase one roll out of the intranet would not have been as robust as it was without the one-on-one support. The regular meetings helped us to problem solve things and allowed us to advance more rapidly than we would have otherwise. As a result, our phase one roll out had about 90% of the material we envisioned hosting on the platform.

– Margaret Palmer, Performance and Quality Improvement Director

Phase two: forms

CFR is currently working on phase two of the project to organize all of their forms within their intranet in line with internal communications best practices.

Through a series of meetings, emails, and trainings, we relied on the experts at IC Thrive to guide us in creating an internal communications tool that is inviting, easily modifiable, and houses all the forms, documents, and news that staff at the organization need to have access to in order to feel supported in doing their jobs.

– Margaret Palmer, Performance and Quality Improvement Director

IC’s Tailored Experience

The Tailored Experience is a proven process developed by IC based on our methodology. When IC goes through the Tailored Experience with a customer, we have the following goals:

1. Measure and improve internal communications

2. Continuous improvement of internal communications

3. Empower internal communications to act strategically

4. Bring metrics, reporting, and data analytics to internal communications

5. Give internal communicators a seat at the leadership table

Because our 7 Principles are a “tailored” process there is no script; the IC team—our Communications Specialist and Customer Success Manager—meets with the customer’s team and works on their needs every week for about 12 weeks. The Tailored Experience also includes milestones and check-in points along the way to keep the journey on track.

The process starts with an Internal Communications Audit, conducted by the Communications Specialist. After the audit a report is drafted, which includes a General Score that is used as a baseline for that organization to measure growth. From that point on, the two teams meet weekly and work both on internal communications concepts and on IC’s software solution.

For our intranet softwarecustomers, we have observed some trends:

1. Faster launch: on average, Tailored Experience customers launch their intranet sites 75% faster than customers without (12 weeks vs. 52 weeks).

2. Communication tied to business goals: the Tailored Experience creates a way to bring your communication plan alive within your organization, allowing you to measure the impact communication has on achieving your goals.

3. Increase engagement in the project: on average, Tailored Experience customers have 3.6 people involved in the project. Customers without the Tailored Experience have, on average, only 1 person involved in the project.

You can see how our Tailored Experience process works in the infographic below:

Having the dedicated time to consult with the experts at IC helped us to stay on track with our timeline, while also breaking down the phases of development into smaller pieces that were more manageable. We also enjoyed the friendly professionalism of the IC team as well as their technical knowledge and patience!

– Margaret Palmer, Performance and Quality Improvement Director

Learn more about IC’s intranet software & the Tailored Experience

Interested in learning more? Book a demo now and discover how IC’s intranet software combined with the Tailored Experience can set your organization up for success.