Case Study: Sodexo
Education Market Winter Virtual Training
Continuing Successful Employee Training
The Education Market group of Sodexo, Inc., with annual revenues of approximately $3 billion, is a leading provider of integrated food and facilities management services to educational institutions. Sodexo has leveraged the ON24 virtual events platform to replace many large-scale live training meetings, saving time and reducing costs while providing a consistent and reliable experience to employees.
Since 2009, the Education Market group has used virtual training to deliver regular technical updates and career development information to more than 4,500 managers in the United States and other countries. For its recent 2011 winter meeting, the group faced a unique employee engagement and satisfaction challenge. Most Sodexo managers had already received the company‟s training content; as a result, only a small number of the managers needed first-time access to the company‟s full curriculum. Faced with an audience of varying needs, Sodexo‟s task was to unify and integrate the online education experience while driving excitement and employee engagement.
The “Show Your Sodexo Spirit” Winter Training
Having already recognized the cost and time efficiencies associated with virtual training, Sodexo focused on making the 2011 Winter Virtual Training inspiring and informative for both the previously trained and the yet-to-be trained.
A “Show Your Sodexo Spirit” theme was developed, built around a lively competition between employees. With voting and participant selection inspired by “American Idol,” the contest encouraged employees to submit profiles about how each Sodexo business unit “makes every day a better day” for clients, customers and employees. The objectives of “Show Your Sodexo Spirit” included reinforcing the company‟s message and brand while allowing participants to create original, high-value educational content. ON24 worked closely with Sodexo to customize the online voting platform for selection of semifinalists and winners, which helped drive employee participation.
Sodexo‟s entire winter meeting agenda was designed to increase attendance and involvement for the duration of the event; it succeeded through ongoing content refreshes and live and on-demand executive presentations, as well as excitement generated around the “Sodexo Spirit” competition.
Market and division presidents hosted virtual kickoff speeches followed by live Q & A sessions which were very popular with employees, giving them immediate access to executive managers. Product and service updates, career development opportunities, interactive events and technical updates were presented via the ON24 platform. Sodexo‟s virtual environment also featured on-demand webcasts and document downloads, as well as interactive 1-1 chat.
Ongoing Cost Savings and Year-Over-Year Training Engagement
Sodexo‟s strategy paid off, with a high level of employee participation during the 2011 Winter Virtual Training – achieving consistent attendance from the event‟s opening day to its conclusion. Some 47 submissions were received for the “Show Your Sodexo Spirit” contest, a creative way to drive participation and interaction. In addition, new divisional executives were empowered to connect and engage with their teams. By leveraging the ON24 platform, Sodexo was able to provide succinct, clear communication to employees, staying on target and on message.
Sodexo has achieved exceptional results from its online training. At the 2011 winter meeting, employee participation totaled 47,119 separate activities:
- Documents Viewed: 35,079
- Webcasts Viewed: 10,531
- Scheduled Chats Entered: 1,462
- Contest Submissions: 47
Through virtual training, Sodexo has eliminated a series of large and expensive company-wide meetings and obtained a savings of more than $300 per employee (excluding travel costs) when compared to in-person training events. Sodexo has also increased manager engagement over the last three years, according to an internal company survey.