Case Study: Increasing Employee Engagement During Times of Organisational Change Westfield
This case study was written by Ernst & Young LLP. The story it examines, of Westfield Insurance’s occupational change management saga, takes on nearly universal themes from the business world and is something that every insurance professional, especially those in leadership positions, needs to read.
The effect that large-scale change could have on morale and engagement of employees is a major concern and potential risk for operational leaders. A decrease in morale and engagement may impact customer service, which is also a significant risk. Additionally, a workforce that is not highly engaged will resist change — taking longer for expected benefits to be achieved.
Many insurers are undertaking major change initiatives to transform their operational capabilities, modernise technology and adjust to new market realities. Some of the risks associated with large scale change programmes include lack of employee engagement and results in people and teams across the organisation resisting strategic change and refusing to adopt new tools and processes. The impact on performance can be significant, as customer service is disrupted and the expected value from very large investments never materialises.
Westfield Insurance (“Westfield”), an Ohio-based P&C carrier, has leveraged a holistic organisational change management (OCM) approach to deliver impressive results on a multi-year claims transformation program. In fact, Westfield accomplished a very rare feat: actually boosting employee satisfaction and engagement during a time of significant change.
While the broad-based nature of the change would challenge many organisations, Westfield’s leaders, using a coordinated and multifaceted OCM approach, have actually increased employee engagement.
Key strategies that have enabled the program’s success have been high-profile executive sponsorship, cross-functional stakeholder alignment, regular and tailored communications, comprehensive training plans, and an extensive “change champion” network.
This article highlights Westfield’s experience in keeping its associates engaged through a robust OCM program tailored to its specific needs, transformation methodology and culture.
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