Successful retail chains, like the ever popular Monsoon brand and its sister store, Accessorize, rely on a business model of centralized decision making with information and instructions cascaded out to stores on a daily basis. Geographical diversity and a lack of desktops at the retail end can make communication harder than it needs to be. On top of this, there are further external stakeholders who need access to reporting and statistics. In order to bridge the information gap, Monsoon Accessorize invested in BrightStarr’s Azure hosted and Office 365 integrated Unily intranet solution, which works across all devices, from desktops at head office, to a mobile used in store.
One of the key objectives for the intranet was to provide a window on each department, giving teams a channel to share activities and making it easy to identify other members of staff. Monsoon Accessorize has utilized Unily’s Tribe functionality to achieve this, enabling non-technical teams to quickly create beautifully designed collaboration pages surfacing News, People, Resources, Social and Documents. Transparency has been improved and departments feel they have a voice.
Monsoon Accessorize now have an intranet that is true to their brand, reflecting their bold choice of patterns and color that we see in their stores. Each department has been able to make their mark on their Tribes and Micro-sites, with custom logos and graphics that reflect who they are. Intuitive user experiences have also helped to keep employees coming back to the intranet, as resources are easy to find and content management instinctive and fast.
Document control was another issue solved by the intranet. Departments like HR and Legal benefited from the ability to share documents directly through the intranet, with the ability to update and collaborate on documents using OneDrive for Business. This way, all of Monsoon Accessorizes' teams were guaranteed to be accessing the most up to date and correct documents and policies every time, ensuring they’re all working from the same sheet.
Monsoon’s solution runs on Unily, BrightStarr’s software as a service based intranet solution. Powerful features such as document management, internal communications, social networking, forms and more are ready to go, enabling faster rollout and less development time. By using the ‘as a service’ model, Unily customers benefit from BrightStarr’s ongoing product improvements, negating the problem of having an ageing intranet that lags behind technologically after a few years.
Communication and collaboration is improved through integration with Yammer Enterprise Social Networking, enabling employees to have their say on corporate news and work together no matter what department they work in. It has improved internal communications by making everyone feel part of the wider business and does an excellent job of uniting the separate buying departments. Studies have shown that higher engagement within the teams results in lower staff turnover, not to mention the increased productivity of a workforce who can find what and who they need and feel connected to all their colleagues, no matter where they are.
Monsoon Accessorize rely on Reporting functionality to share vital store and sales statistics with international partners, area managers and stores. This process has been improved as data is now available through the intranet, with external users able to access the information as and when they need it, from any device. The ability to drill-down into information, and provide feedback through Yammer integration has dramatically improved the process of reporting, improving visibility for geographically spread teams.