Creating Culture

Can a consistent culture be created in a collection of companies under an umbrella brand? Cody Rowland shares how Renovo Home Partners is bringing together companies to transform the organisation.

Bringing together seven different home remodelling companies of different sizes from different regions of the country doesn’t come without challenges.      

In their respective markets, each of the seven Partner Companies have rich histories, loyal customer bases, experienced employees and strong brands.

The Mission: Collaboration & Growth

Renovo Home Partners is an exciting new platform in the dynamic home remodelling business. Backed by Audax Private Equity, a leading-edge firm that specialises in helping middle-market companies grow, Renovo Home Partners brings together leading home improvement companies from across the United States and gives them the tools they need to grow within their unique markets. 

The Challenge

What they didn’t have were a lot of processes or systems in common. 

There was neither a single, overarching employee brand identity nor a harmonised employee experience. While this means there were ample opportunities to create synergies and collaborations, care needed to be taken to ensure that any initiative built on the rich history of each partner company—without destroying what makes them unique. 

The HR team decided to begin with harmonising benefits packages and the back office HRIS (HR Information Systems). A lot of hard work went into creating both a benefit package that was more robust than any offered by the Partner Companies in the past, as well as new HR tools and processes that were a step ahead of what was available before. 

But how could the HR team communicate these important changes to employees? And more importantly, how could they get employees on board with these changes?     

The Solution: Overcoming Challenges

Digital tools quickly emerged as the solution to many of these challenges. But it also presented a whole new set of challenges: 

Not everyone in the company had the same comfort level with technology.

Not everyone is used to accessing benefits information digitally.

An app was developed and prepared to be rolled out across the seven Partner Companies. But given their rich histories and strong cultures, it was recognised that a simple top-down communication approach would not be well received. Rather, an opportunity was recognised to take an appreciative approach and co-create launch plans with key stakeholders in the Partner Companies. 

The Action Plan

A robust change management plan was created to support the roll-out of this new tool. 

The diagnostic phase of the plan engaged the Partner Companies in sharing more about:

How their operations work

What resonates with their employees

How best to excite them about any change initiative

A detailed diagnostic report highlighting the findings was then created and shared with the HR leaders. From these findings, an adoption plan was devised for the app launch.

The Launch 

With the input of the external marketing team, the app was customised with: 

A Renovo-specific logo

A new branding scheme

A unique name

Customised features

A multi-pronged communications plan was created to drive awareness of and excitement for the app. A campaign of intrigue was used to initially capture the attention of employees before launch. Whilst a series of emails, digital flyers, and other communications were designed to create buzz for the app. 

The Result

A unified employee experience. Once launched, it was not enough for employees to simply download the app. A culture change was needed so that employees would want to continuously engage with the app. 

To continue to drive traffic to the app, and in response to needs discovered through the diagnostic process, an app-driven wellness initiative was launched. A monthly wellness newsletter was launched with topical articles, employee spotlights, healthy recipes, and tips on infusing movement into the day.

In addition to the newsletter, a monthly series of both in-person and virtual wellness events were launched to create meaningful experiences for employees. These were all communicated and managed through the app. 

To further unify the employee experience, the diagnostic revealed that new employees could benefit by feeling connected to the broader Renovo Home Partner family, not just their local Partner Company. To fulfil this need, a new onboarding experience was created with a modular onboarding programme and an animated video. 

Lastly, to amplify the internal employee brand, new internal branding guidelines were created along with several new assets. Zoom backgrounds, letterheads, policy documents and more, now all convey the brand essence of legacy and partnership. 

The Future?

Renovo is benefitting from the time the HR team took to fully understand the unique histories and different needs of employees in each of the seven Partner Companies. 

Through this effort, a more meaningful culture change initiative was launched, one that is laying the foundations for unified employee experience campaigns to build upon in the future. 

As a result, Renovo’s customers will benefit from even stronger levels of service from even more engaged employees. 

Above all, a unified employee experience means a stronger workforce, and stronger cultural change, collaboration, and growth.