How CSD Leveraged Volunteering To Connect Their Global Virtual Workforce [SPARK]
WHAT'S YOUR NAME?
WHAT IS YOUR COMPANY NAME?
Communication Service for the Deaf (CSD)
WHAT'S YOUR TITLE?
Vice President of Talent & Culture
WHAT CITY IS YOUR COMPANY BASED IN?
As a virtual company, we’re based everywhere!
WHAT COUNTRY IS YOUR COMPANY BASED IN?
HOW MANY EMPLOYEES DOES YOUR COMPANY HAVE?
HOW WOULD YOU CATEGORIZE YOUR SPARK?
WHAT'S THE CHALLENGE YOU HAD TO OVERCOME?
Our administrative workforce is made up of about 100 remote employees. These employees are completely virtual, working whenever and wherever they’d like. The remaining 700+ employees work in contact centers across the globe. The contact center employees provide service to Deaf and Hard of Hearing people via Telephone Relay Services (TRS); CapTel services, a voice-to-text translation system; equipment distribution; or direct human services. They’re the ones really driving revenue for the organization and directly serving the deaf community.
This employee-separation makes it tough to stay connected and prevent silos amongst our employees. In addition, our administrative workforce never gets to see what our call center employees are doing. This is a shame because the call centers are doing some really great things—both related to our mission of achieving equal access and opportunity for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing, but also more broadly for our desire to do good in the world. We wanted a way to ensure all of our employees feel connected to and united by this desire, as well as to each other as members of CSD.
WHAT DID YOU DO TO SOLVE IT?
This year, we decided to launch a program called ‘Live Here Give Here,’ in which we challenge our employees to dedicate 10 hours a year to community service—not necessarily anything deaf-centric, just any effort to make the world a better place.
WHAT WAS THE ROI / IMPACT OF YOUR SOLUTION?
We’ve had great participation in the program, thus far. For example, a group from our call center in Minnesota recently posted a picture of them volunteering at a local food kitchen on the social feed within our HRIS, Namely. It was so awesome to see 1) they were doing good in their local community, 2) they were bonding as a team, and 3) we were able to connect with them and smile at what they did from thousands of miles away.
WHAT WAS YOUR BIGGEST LEARNING?
Encouraging employees to share their volunteer work with the rest of the company really made all the difference. Having them do the volunteer work and do good in their local communities is one thing, but what was more impactful was giving our administrative workforce visibility into what everyone is doing and connecting all employees across our organization, no matter where they work.
WHAT WAS YOUR BIGGEST MISTAKE?
Not doing this sooner!
DID YOU USE ANY TOOLS IN YOUR INITIATIVE?