Summary

Tesltra is Australia’s largest telecommunications company which builds and operates telecommunications networks and markets voice, mobile, internet access, pay television and other products and services. It has revenue of about $AUD26 billion.

Discussion about same-sex marriage and an upcoming vote in Australia was passionate topic at Telstra. Yammer was where employees could have their say.
Group Executive, Human Resources, Alex Badenoch, said through employee networks like Yammer Telstra was providing open channels and opportunities for advice, support, information and engagement for LGBT+ inclusion.

While the same-sex marriage debate may not obviously seem to have a direct impact on every day work at Telstra, it was as issue of passion affecting many. By providing a safe forum on Yammer, employees were able to feel supported by, and connected to, their executives and given the opportunity to be heard with respect.

Challenge

It begs the question; what’s it got to do with work? What benefit is it to a telco to have thousands of staff spending their time discussing their personal views on marriage equality?
According to Telstra’s leadership, it’s got everything to do with making employees feel respected, heard, valued, safe and connected.

Former Internal Communications Manager Liz Green said SWOOP had become an integral part of coaching Telstra’s senior leadership team by showing them their online behaviours through personas, their personal network map and the list of most influential people.

The single most discussed topic on one of the largest private Yammer networks in the Asia Pacific region is same-sex marriage.

Strategy

Ms Green said sitting down with senior leaders and showing them their personal SWOOP dashboard was a powerful way of explaining what was working and where they could improve, with the data telling the story.

“Ultimately it comes down to relationships and increasingly it’s about the value of relationships that individuals have, particularly that leaders have, and how those relationships can help them be better at what they do and achieve what needs to get done,” she said.

Data from SWOOP Analytics shows debate on Australian telecommunications company Telstra’s Yammer network around Australia’s same-sex marriage vote received the most engagement in Telstra’s nine-year history with Yammer.

 

Results

Telstra uses Yammer to foster social interactions among like-minded employees and to monitor the corporate pulse on big company-wide initiatives – like the launch of a new corporate strategy. Telstra has been recognised by SWOOP as a world leader in Yammer performance.

In the world’s largest analysis of Yammer networks, where SWOOP reviewed data from 74 organisations worldwide representing more than 1.4 million users and 12 million interactions, Telstra was ranked among the top two performers for large companies.

“We have observed from our benchmarking studies that mature Yammer users like Telstra have moved well and truly beyond seeing Yammer as just another publishing channel,” said SWOOP Co-Founder and Chief Scientist, Dr Laurence Lock Lee. “Our benchmarked leaders are moving towards using their internal social channels to directly impact their organisational culture and stated values; something we see in evidence here.”

Yammer is not just a place for issuing corporate communications—it’s a cultural home for us."

- Gary McGibbon

Senior Social Media Strategist
Telstra