- An app created four years ago through a partnership between Haagen-Dazs and Design Center proved to be a problem-solver for the ice cream chain, reports the Star Tribune. Facing dismal communication between employees and the corporate office, low worker engagement, and workflow inefficiencies, the Minneapolis-based ice cream chain partnered with Design Center in 2012. Specializing in efficiency tools for companies, Design Center created an internal app, HDScoops, for Haagen-Dazs.
- HDScoops offers training for employees, a feed and live chat that employees in every Haagen-Dazs store can view and post to, a scheduling and timekeeping function, and news from the corporate office. Late last year, the store and Design Center introduced a game called Snap Learning that teaches employees best practices for working at Haagen-Dazs and allows them to earn points to buy digital accessories, according to the Tribune.
- Since HDScoops' release, engagement at the franchises rose by 15 points in subsequent employee surveys, and customer services scores rose by 10%.
Haagen-Dazs surveyed employees in their stores to determine where lapses and deficiencies were; by asking employees for feedback, the company was able to target problems it needed to address. It was also able to provide a tool in a format employees were most likely to use — notably, a mobile-accessible one.
HR Dive cites development as one of the top 10 trends that will shape HR this year. Employers can use Haagen-Dazs' case as a study in how to develop employees with tech tools that are both instructive and fun to use. Development rates high among employee preferences in surveys, and a lack of it is often what drives workers to leave their current jobs for opportunities elsewhere. Engagement and retention thrive in workplaces that value and promote development.
Communication continues to draw complaints from workers about their organizations, and much of this goes back to managers and their managing style. But with today's tools and multiple platforms for connecting, managers have more opportunities to check in with their direct reports. The test for employers still confronting age-old communication problems is to be open to innovation and begin the move towards digitization — or risk being left behind.