As a European technology partner for construction services, STRABAG is a leader in innovation and capital strength.
Like many companies, STRABAG is in the midst of digital transformation. In order to secure and expand its position as a market leader and pioneer, the company has identified the strategic development of managers for the digital age as a key issue. The requirement for the further development measures was that not only the content but also the method of professional learning should be in line with the digital zeitgeist. For this reason, STRABAG decided to integrate Sharpist’s results-oriented digital learning platform.
With an average satisfaction rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars, Sharpist does not only create value for Franke’s employees, but also pays close attention to serve the needs of HR professionals. “Measuring and evaluating the impact of our L&D solutions is extremely challenging”, says Malgorzata Warchol, Global Learning and Development Specialist at Franke Poland, “but Sharpist’s data-driven coaching approach gives me cohort-level insights and analytics about employee’s satisfaction, user progress, coaching effectiveness and developmental areas.
Sharpist even offers to fully customize the coaching and its evaluation specifically to our Franke evaluation criteria and values.” This supports employees to also follow and live up the Franke values and culture. Thereby, Sharpist ensures an approach that is tailored to employee’s individual needs, whilst simultaneously customized to Franke’s business expectations. This is highly important since L&D should never become a one size fits all approach.
Kirill is Group Head of Learning & Development at Franke Management AG, a world leading industrial manufacturer. Since he has been working at Franke for almost four years, he knows the organization, culture and structure of Franke particularly well. He is responsible for managing and developing all central learning and development related activities group-wide, including, for instance, leading the high potential programs and implementing the global Leadership Training architecture. His mission: “Give every single employee the opportunity to pick high quality L&D solutions that simultaneously match the company’s strategy as well as individual needs.”
The history of Franke resembles a story of success. Started as a family business in Switzerland in 1911, the organization has now become a world leading provider of smart kitchen and household systems and appliances. As of today, the Franke Holding Group unifies five divisions on five continents with more than 10,500 employees worldwide. What sets them apart from other businesses in the field is their strong focus on Swiss quality, innovative engineering and unique design. Franke’s vision: ‘Make it wonderful’.
But this vision does not only apply to Franke’s products and services, as it also defines their corporate culture.“ At Franke, we know that our people make the difference. We want to create a ‘wonderful’ place to work - for all employees. This is reflected in our values, the five ‘Franke Values’: Enable people, foster teamwork, act entrepreneurial, deliver solutions and be accountable. We firmly believe that our strong culture is the driver of our success. Our competitive advantage derives from the right people’s behaviors”, says Kirill.
“But continuous growth made us face new challenges. Right now, our people are spread across 40 countries on five continents. We are a global organization with a comparably decentralized structure. This, of course, makes it much harder for us to build a uniform L&D strategy, especially considering that nearly all of our units have individual HR departments and budgets. The question that drives me every day is: How can I ensure that all employees can learn and grow according to their needs to fulfil their potential? How can I ensure that everyone lives up to our values and thrives in our culture?”
Kirill is not the only one who faces this issue. Building up a centralized and sustainable L&D strategy is a challenge many globally operating companies have to deal with. But it is a challenge whose solution can provide a competitive edge, particularly during times where talent attraction and retention is key. “I strongly believe that effective L&D solutions that enhance the desired behaviors are important success drivers. The positive impact on critical business indicators such as productivity, innovation, employee satisfaction and engagement has been demonstrated many times. That’s why we started our ‘Franke Academy’.” Offering a wide range of L&D solutions, Franke’s very own corporate academy is based on their prime value: Enable people at all levels.
However, different measures have different short-comings. When it comes to employee development, the cost-benefit trade-off is a common challenge. Group formats, such as classroom training or seminars, are great for fostering networks and interaction, however, they do not always meet all the individual needs. Personalized solutions, such as in person coaching, are cost-intensive and therefore limited to a few.
The effectiveness of more affordable online programs suffers from low completion rates. In line with that, the ‘Franke Academy’ consisted of only a few entirely digital formats, mostly blended, but large classroom components and location-dependent measures. “Put together, we needed a solution that further supports a shift from a decentralized to a more centralized L&D approach. Ideally, it could be integrated into the ‘Franke Academy’ and compensates the existing L&D formats.”
“When I first heard about the Sharpist L&D ecosystem, it sounded like a very good fit for our organization. However, we first wanted to test compatibility with an external L&D provider before agreeing on any form of long-term collaboration.”, Kirill admits.
Thus, in 2019, Franke rolled out a 3-month test period with Sharpist in order to see how well a digital coaching solution would match their expectations. Under the condition ‘first come, first serve’, 30 Franke managers could participate in this initial pilot project. “After all the positive feedback we received, we then decided to continue our contract and include Sharpist Business Coaching into the Franke Academy.”
The group-wide rollout of Sharpist allows every Franke employee worldwide to benefit from the Sharpist App: Professional coaching in their mother tongue via mobile device combined with personalized Micro Tasks and 24/7 user support from business psychologists. “This individual and digital approach perfectly complements our existing L&D measures, so that our people have the ideal blend of online and offline solutions. It enables them a holistic and continuous learning experience.” The collaboration between Sharpist and Franke works on-demand: Depending on how many of Franke’s employees wish to receive digital business coaching, the responsible HR manager can easily request a suitable package of licenses from Sharpist. “I value very much the flexibility that this allows. An on-demand approach turned out to be the perfect solution for us.
But this is not the only benefit.”, Kirill says. “In general, the collaboration with Sharpist was almost effortless.” Partnering with an external L&D provider can indeed save internal HR resources. To ensure this, Sharpisthas their very own Implementation Consultants who accompany the HR manager through every step alongside their Sharpist journey, ensuring that HR has the least amount of effort possible.
With an average satisfaction rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars, Sharpist does not only create value for Franke’s employees, but also pays close attention to serve the needs of HR professionals. “Measuring and evaluating the impact of our L&D solutions is extremely challenging”, says Malgorzata Warchol, Global Learning and Development Specialist at Franke Poland, “but Sharpist’s data-driven coaching approach gives me cohort-level insights and analytics about employee’s satisfaction, user progress, coaching effectiveness and developmental areas. Sharpist even offers to fully customize the coaching and its evaluation specifically to our Franke evaluation criteria and values.” This supports employees to also follow and live up the Franke values and culture. Thereby, Sharpist ensures an approach that is tailored to employee’s individual needs, whilst simultaneously customized to Franke’s business expectations. This is highly important sinceL&D should never become a one size fits all approach.
Following the introduction of a pilot phase in which STRABAG division and management heads were offered the opportunity to use Sharpist's digital coaching and further development services, extraordinary interest in the service was shown within a short period of time.
During the subsequent roll-out of the digital coaching offer for all management levels, more than 500 managers in Germany, Austria, and five other countries took part in Sharpist's digital development offer between October 2019 and December 2020. Most participants used the digital learning platform and individual coaching to develop their leadership skills (20 percent), while another 12 percent of participants focused on crisis and change management in their individual development. The topics of self-reflection (10 percent) and effective communication were also in demand for developing their own leadership skills. In total, more than a thousand coaching sessions have already been used via the Sharpist learning platform. Hundreds of hours have been spent completing additional self-learning tasks via the Sharpist learning app.
We use Sharpist "e-business coaching" at STRABAG because we had very good experiences with it in the pilot project. Thanks to the global network of executive coaches, we can offer this service to our managers at all levels and in most Group countries - and this "sparring" is now very much appreciated.
Results on collaboration with coaches also show that digital offerings, like Sharpist's, are in no way inferior to face-to-face coaching sessions.
satisfied with their Sharpist coach
find that their coach helped them achieve their defined goals
recommend coaching with Sharpist to their colleagues