How do you architect a site for employees with unique requirements?
“We are pleased that our ambitious goals for our employee experience have been delivered in partnership with AddIn365. Using AddIn365 products and services alongside our internal capabilities, we have been able to take advantage of Viva Connections and bot capabilities, to deliver a highly personalised user experience.“
Agrii is an organisation that is part of the food production supply chain, providing agronomy services, technology, and strategic advice to farmers in the UK. Agrii combines excellence and innovation with the latest research and development to ensure their customers can meet today’s farming challenges with knowledge and confidence. Their intelligence and data are relied upon by over 20,000 British farmers, representing some 40% of UK arable agricultural output.
Agrii have two core audiences; central teams and frontline workers. Central team members work in business functions such as HR, Finance, Marketing and IT. They work in a hybrid model, between home and office. Most frontline workers at Agrii are agronomists. An agronomist acts as the go-between for farmers and crop researchers. They are concerned with the health of crops used to produce food. Spending most of their time in fields, agronomists review research and use this knowledge to help recommend solutions to farmers, to help their growing operation.
With such a reliance on their advice, and a weight of responsibility to keep farms profitable and the environment protected; Agrii’s agronomists must get their recommendations to farmers right.
Agrii wanted to deliver a new digital employee experience on Microsoft 365. Agrii were looking for:
- A fresh employee experience that would bring the Agrii brand to life.
- An approach to make content more findable. In particular, a mobile experience that would support the agronomists out in the fields, with relevant content that supports their work.
- Price certainty and a speedy delivery approach.
Additionally, Agrii needed to migrate their content from SharePoint 2013 to SharePoint Online.
Agrii wanted to use SaaS products for Microsoft 365 to deliver on their goals, from a partner that could also provide services to support their implementation. Agrii selected AddIn365.
Arable farmers in the UK are serviced by Agrii
British farmers rely on Agrii data and intelligence
A fresh employee experience
Agrii have a strong and recognisable brand that has been developed to distinctively represent Agrii and the way the organisation works. Research and development lie at the heart of Agrii’s values, where being innovative, results based, trustworthy and progressive, define Agrii’s culture.
It was essential to Agrii that the new digital employee experience built on SharePoint would be brand aligned. The consistent use of the Agrii identity helps the brand to be recognisable, which in turn holds Agrii’s leading position in the marketplace.
Agrii invested in AddIn365’s Creative and Page Kit product, an add-in for SharePoint Modern. The Creative and Page Kit delivers components that showcase brand, within SharePoint Modern. This investment has allowed for the delivery of a brand-rich user interface.
AddIn365’s design team produced a look and feel for the new site that brings the best out of the Agrii brand, SharePoint Modern and AddIn365’s Creative and Page Kit.
Making content more findable
Agrii’s core requirement was to make the content within Microsoft 365 more findable. With more than 100,000 technical documents available to agronomists and a complex cataloguing model for technical information, delivering easy to locate content was crucial.
“We selected AddIn365 as our employee experience partner because we were able to see what we were going to get before investing; AddIn365 products and employee experiences were all demonstrated to us. The AddIn365 services approach is also fixed price, so we were clear on our investment, upfront.“
A task-based information architecture
AddIn365 designed an information architecture for Agrii that focuses on helping employees to complete the tasks they are trying to do. This was to ensure the new digital employee experience would be as useful and as intuitive to employees as possible.
AddIn365 provided content hubs for:
- The employee value proposition: wellbeing, career pathways, benefits
- Locations: regions, depots, offices and site management information
- Colleague updates: seasonal news, industry news, supplier news, strategic news
Context driven experiences
Agronomists spend their time in fields with farmers, advising and making recommendations on plans and interventions suitable for the environment. Agrii wanted to support their agronomists in accessing the data they need in the moment, to support their client recommendations.
Following a discovery phase with the agronomists, it emerged that each agronomist likes to work differently; their method of collating crop, soil and product information varies. Agrii’s people, specialised and market leading, have developed their own unique value-adding ways of liaising with and supporting their customers with the most up-to-date intelligence. It was therefore essential that the new experience could be tailored, personalised, and offer digital satisfaction to all employees as individuals, rather than being seen as having generic role based needs.
AddIn365 provided a solution for agronomists in delivering a context template. The context template allows for data to be collated in a free form, so that agronomists can bring information together in a context that makes sense to them. This innovative solution has meant that the project team have been able to provide a single solution that will work for all agronomists, without one-to-one consultation and solution delivery.
A personalised mobile experience: Viva Connections dashboard
The Viva Connections mobile app makes it easy for employees to access data, connect with their colleagues, and utilise the tools they need seamlessly.
AddIn365 advised Agrii to make use of the Viva Connections mobile experience, which allows access to the digital employee experience from one mobile app; the SharePoint sites experience, a fully personalised feed for news and community activity, alongside a tailored dashboard that provides rapid access to job-related tasks.
A specialist in implementing Viva Connections dashboards, AddIn365 built an agronomist dashboard experience, tailored to each employee. The dashboard consists of cards that engage viewers with existing Teams apps, third-party apps, custom solutions, internal and external links. AddIn365 provided Agrii with 6 cards for agronomists, that deliver priority information to this audience and support their ability to quickly utilise research and make recommendations to farmers, when they are onsite at one of the UKs farms.
Using a bot
On any given day, an Agrii agronomist could need to access one of the 100,000 documents they have access to, to provide the very best intelligence to farmers.
Agrii required a method through which an agronomist could find and access the data they need, easily.
Agrii invested in AddIn365’s Content Confidence Kit, which provides bot-based access to these documents. Agrii’s bot – Alfred – has optimised the findability of key documents and provides a feedback mechanism on content, allowing the project team to evolve the available content as the agronomists’ requirements change.
“We provide agronomists with access to a huge amount of product labels and brochures. Our agronomists have to trawl through a lot of content to get what they need.“
Digital Agronomy Technical Manager
Agrii needed to migrate 29,000 content documents from SharePoint 2013 to SharePoint Online. Agrii had capacity to migrate the pages but required support to migrate their metadata and associated tags, which are essential to serve the findability requirements of Agrii’s employees.
AddIn365 were engaged to design the metadata migration process and to execute it, alongside the Agrii IT team. Completed over several days, 29,000 documents are now centrally housed and accessible.
“AddIn365’s delivery team plugged into ours, providing support where we needed extra resource. This helped us to maximise the use of our own team and get the project delivered in a timely fashion.“
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