The Prodigal Principle

April 12, 2018
by Jim Jarrett

ANCILE Employee Summit: Part 1

This past week, the entire ANCILE global employee base had the opportunity to come together in the beautiful Baltimore Harbor to reconnect, learn, and strategize about the future. One of my favorite parts of the summit is the opportunity to hear directly from our customers as they share their experiences, challenges, and wishlists for ANCILE uPerform.

employee summit baltimore

And what a customer panel we had! Food giant Cargill, advertising and marketing powerhouse IPG, and the iconic General Motors all shared their journey with uPerform. What’s interesting is the range of style of journey they’ve taken. While IPG’s use of uPerform has been fairly straightforward, both Cargill and GM could be seen as “Prodigal” – both stopped usage of uP for awhile. The “prodigal principle” experienced by both Cargill and GM, however, was that large, complex organizations like theirs (Cargill with 153,000 employees and GM with 225,000 employees) have very real challenges in creating, managing, and distributing software learning content. When faced with operating at such massive scale, they quickly (re)discover that ANCILE uPerform is uniquely positioned to address these challenges.

With employee bases this large and dispersed, in virtually every country of the world, the most obvious challenge is simply how to distribute content to users in a variety of formats and languages. Each of these customers is taking advantage of the uPerform features like instant translations (30+ languages), text-to-speech, and the end user portal to provide a destination for users to access relevant and up-to-date content. Sometimes this is directly in uPerform, while in other cases they are supplementing other document repositories (like SharePoint) or LMSs (like SuccessFactors).

Another common theme was usage of uPerform on multiple applications, sometimes even for non-traditional content. GM experienced an 80% savings in the creation of test scripts for HP PLM. IPG is using uPerform to roll out Fiori – SAP’s new GUI that extends to mobile phones and tablets – to 25,000 employees. Cargill is addressing the complexity in their new Salt initiative by using uPerform to create content, and is in the process of adding Context Sensitive Help (CSH) to SuccessFactors.

Sometimes, the Helpers Need Help, too

Furthermore, while these organizations understand that the freshness, relevance, and availability of content can significantly reduce help desk calls from users, they’re also beginning to use uPerform for their help desk agents themselves. Using uPerform, agents quickly access and share answers to “how do I…” questions. An interesting, and somewhat obscure, advantage enjoyed by uPerform content management capabilities is that documents are referenced by a URL that never changes, even when the underlying document is updated. This virtually eliminates the overhead of maintaining document locations over time, and makes it easy for the help desk (and anyone else!) to share documents without having to worry about whether the recipient will be accessing the most recent version.

We’d like to thank our panelists – Cargill’s Jennifer Cupp, Change, Communication and Education Manager and Marsha Henry, Global IT Change Management Leader, Angela Clemons, Global Training Manager for IPG, and GM’s Gerry Legault, Manager – SAP User Experience Team – for their invaluable insights, feedback, and time taken to address ANCILE’s employees.

Plus, we’re not done! Next, in Part 2, we’ll reflect on the insights provided by some of the software companies for whom we provide solutions and with whom we partner.

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