How Zions Bancorporation’s Learning Strategy Eliminates Knowledge Silos
By guest blogger Brent Godfrey, Chief Learning Officer, Zions Bancorporation
What do you get when you combine eight different banks, numerous departments, hundreds of products and 12,000 learners? You get SILOS! And they once were an expected occurrence at Zions Bancorporation.
Our business strategy is for Zions’ local banks to remain local and relatively autonomous in name and in spirit. So, we don’t rebrand them with a common name and we don’t force centralization. This is a great thing for continuity of customer service, but it can be a challenge internally to navigate our company and cross-sell – or to simply to find out who does what.
This is why our learning organization developed a solution that engages employees from across functional areas and business units, and helps them share useful operations information with others in the corporation.
It is a user-generated content program that we call i-connect. Employees are encouraged to create and post a short video narrated by their department head, along with a slide presentation that explains in a snapshot how their department fits into our company. Each i-connect submission is a quick hit – only a few minutes long. It contains:
- A video (60 seconds or less) introducing the department;
- A few slides about the services they provide, how they can help meet the goals of others, what kind of help they need from others in the organization, and how they can be contacted.
Online access to i-connect content makes it really fast and easy for employees across Zions to understand what other departments do, and how they can help each other operate more efficiently and effectively.
Within only a few months, this program has become a major success. We received many more submissions than we expected, the cost has been next to nothing, and our people love it. It’s too early to tell how much i-connect will increase sales, but we noticed right away that our silos are finally breaking down.
As Brent’s organization is proving, it pays to involve your workforce in enterprise knowledge sharing initiatives. But even the best learning content is useless if it isn’t easy to find and use. That’s why many companies are turning to next-generation learning platforms that support continuous learning in all of its modes – formal, informal, collaboorative and social.
As Josh Bersin, and other enterprise learning experts say, “Your LMS matters more now, than ever.” For more information about how Bersin’s organization views the connection between continuous learning and platforms like the ExpertusONE dynamic cloud LMS, download the research bulletin “ExpertusONE and the Dawn of the Continuous Learning Management System.”
Or to learn more specifically how your company can make learning content more accessible and actionable for your workforce, contact us at Expertus firstname.lastname@example.org.
Editorial Note: Thanks to our guest author, Brent Godfrey, Chief Learning Officer, Zions Bancorporation. Do you have a question about this topic? Or do you have a real-world enterprise learning story to share? Contact our editor anytime at email@example.com.
Photo credit: Country Skyscrapers by Charles Thompson