A successful collaboration to deliver change for Croda's members
Working closely with Croda's management team, we were engaged to design and implement a communication strategy to explain proposed changes to members' future pension provision. This involved the delivery of a range of communications to members at three key stages in the process: consultation launch, during the consultation itself and post consultation.
Our strategy relied on using the right mix of messages and media at the right times to get the key information across. In order to deliver this, we needed to spend time getting to know our client and the culture of their organisation. Our kick off workshop with the Croda team included thoughts, sentiments, ideas and even a fine selection of shoes! As a result, we created a distinct visual style for the Croda pension change communications. Central to this was the creation of a set of personas which reflected the diverse audience, from shop floor staff to senior management, covering a broad range of ages and circumstances. We used the personas to demonstrate how the proposed changes would affect individual groups of members.
As the Croda workforce is spread across a number of locations on various shift patterns, we needed to be clear and consistent about the context and content of the changes. To address this, we scripted, filmed and edited a video message from the Group Chief Executive, which was played at the beginning of 'town halls' being held to announce the changes. In addition, we created animated videos that explain each proposed change, which could be accessed from their intranet site.
We created personalised information packs for employees and a special briefing pack to equip managers with useful facts and information, so they could support employees and ensure the messages remained consistent.
Letters were sent to those that were not directly affected by the proposed changes to provide reassurance and alleviate any concerns they may have had.
From the outset, we recognised the importance of joint project planning with the Croda team and proactively supported members throughout the consultation process. This was essential to the success of the project. For example, we had planned to arrange pension clinics, where members could ask specific questions about how the proposed changes would affect them. These proved to be unnecessary, as members felt they had a good understanding of the pension scheme and recognised why their contributions would be increasing.
Overall, the feedback Croda received from their employees was positive and accepting, as staff understood the need for change both in the current economic climate and for long-term sustainability.