BACKGROUND

Goodwill Industries International is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that serves local communities through hands on job training, leadership opportunities, employment placement, and community programs for those with disabilities, veteran status, and limited employment history.

The nonprofit, worth nearly $4 billion in revenue, operates as a vast national network in 165 regional operating groups, each with dozens (and some hundreds) of retail stores. Its service pillars–including retail sales and career services–are completely funded by donations. Our Digital Network was deployed in the Goodwill Southern Rivers region with 40 sites, headquartered in Columbus, GA.

Challenge & Research

Adrenaline was engaged to develop Goodwill TV, an internal digital network designed to flatten layers of communication by connecting team members at all 10 locations with each other and various levels of management and leadership.

Rick Barrick, Vice President of Digital Strategy at Adrenaline, said that Goodwill recognized the need to bring purposeful content into each store location.

“Goodwill really understands that success rests in the hands of its team members,” he said. “They have a friendly amount of turnover due to their focus on helping people learn new skills, gain education, and take ownership of their career. When you have a fluid workforce like Goodwill does, it’s important to continually share the company’s mission.”

Realizing the challenges that come with organizational silos, Goodwill approached Adrenaline with the concept of creating a system of network-wide communication accessible to all, in a setting where all retail and career center team members could view localized updates, success stories, job roles, management contacts, and team member profiles.
This transparency, combined with a fresh digital platform, would inspire greater collaboration and communication across the territory.

Julie Bennett, Director of Communications Services for Goodwill Industries of the Southern Rivers, noted that the research phase pinpointed several conflicts that could be resolved through the development of Goodwill TV.

FROM ONLINE AND IN-PERSON RESEARCH, WE RECOGNIZED THAT THERE WAS A DESIRE FROM OUR TEAM TO SEE AND HEAR FROM THE MANY FACES OF OUR LEADERSHIP.

- Julie Bennett, Director, Communications Services, Goodwill Industries of Southern Rivers

“From online and in-person research, we recognized that there was a desire from our team, especially in our most remote locations, to see and hear from the many faces of our leadership,” she said. “We also knew that our teams were having trouble articulating the Goodwill mission, seeing the profound impact of their role in the community, and understanding how to stay connected with others across the organization.”

In the project’s kickoff meeting, Adrenaline guided Goodwill in defining each team member’s needs, further developing a framework for content and messaging for Goodwill TV.  Most importantly, the platform had to be developed in a way that avoided placing a burden on its team members by requiring the purchase of digital devices or internet connectivity, and be accessible to those with learning disorders, autism, or other personal challenges.

By featuring accessible-by-all content in a shared location, such as a break room or staff area, Goodwill TV set out to promote inclusivity of all regardless of rank or level within the organization.

Goodwill TV also had to unite team members with Goodwill’s mission and vision, reminding them that their role is highly valued and their work contributes to the bigger picture.

Through previous work with Adrenaline, Bennett said she knew the agency was well suited to bring the unique project to life.

I KNEW ADRENALINE HAD THE CREATIVE AND STRATEGIC CALIBER TO PRODUCE THE PLATFORM WE HAD ENVISIONED.

- Julie Bennett, Director, Communications Services, Goodwill Industries of Southern Rivers

“Having been familiar with the role of technology in the banking and financial services industry, I knew Adrenaline had the creative and strategic caliber to produce the platform we had envisioned.” 

Execution

Kicking off the design phase, Adrenaline narrowed its focus to several content buckets: local weather, success stories, job roles, and storewide updates. The team then created several series of templates, iconography, and visual marks that stayed on brand with Goodwill’s bright, simple aesthetic.

Barrick said that Goodwill TV was designed in order to simplify the process of weekly content creation.

TEMPLATES GIVE THE GOODWILL TEAM THE ABILITY TO EDIT CONTENT QUICKLY, WHILE STILL REMAINING CONSISTENT WITH BRAND STANDARDS.

- Rick Barrick, Vice President of Digital StrategyA

“Templates give the Goodwill team the ability to edit content quickly, bringing in syndicated news or weather, while still remaining consistent with brand standards.”

In order to keep content fresh and constantly changing, Adrenaline developed Goodwill TV so that content could be managed by Goodwill’s internal marketing team. New team member profiles and video introductions by leadership, for instance, could be kept up for a chosen length of time, while daily updates, like weather, could be swapped out more frequently.

“If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth 10 million words,” Bennett said of the push toward more interactive content pieces featured on Goodwill TV. “Video feels more personal and it holds your attention. Goodwill TV meets our team where they are, helping them become our most powerful advocates of our story and mission.”

In the next year, Goodwill TV will expand its documentary-style video storytelling, contests, and team member generated content that will be featured on regular rotation. The marketing team, responsible for content creation, will continue asking for feedback in order to improve Goodwill TV and to ensure that it continues to meet team member needs.

GOODWILL TV MEETS OUR TEAM WHERE THEY ARE, HELPING THEM BECOME OUR MOST POWERFUL ADVOCATES OF OUR STORY AND MISSION.

- Julie Bennett, Director, Communications Services, Goodwill Industries of Southern Rivers

“This is one of the projects I’m most proud of,” Bennett said. “I see Goodwill TV working, I see it helping team members understand what we do, and I see it engaging people in a way that helps them understand how they are out there changing lives in the communities we serve.”

Unifying Idea

Goodwill TV set out to accomplish three main goals: to flatten layers of hierarchical communication and connect employees through content, to share and celebrate the organization’s mission of “changing lives through the power of work”, and to use technology in a way that tells stories of profound impact, connecting day-to-day job functions to the neighbors and communities each location serves.

PEOPLE WANT TO FEEL MOVED BY THE WORK THEY DO, AND GOODWILL TV SETS OUT TO HELP THEM SEE THEIR PURPOSE IN THE BIGGER PICTURE.

- Julie Bennett, Director, Communications Services, Goodwill Industries of Southern Rivers

“When our team members hear about how Goodwill helped someone find a job, acquire training, and become a homeowner, for example, Goodwill TV becomes much more impactful than simply sharing organizational statistics,” Bennett said. “People want to feel moved by the work they do, and Goodwill TV sets out to help them see their purpose in the bigger picture.”

Conclusion

What started out as a concept to break down organizational silos and foster organization-wide communication has now become a rich, dynamic content hub designed to connect the Goodwill mission to the everyday.

Today, Goodwill TV serves as more than just a digitized bulletin board — the digital network empowers employees to collaborate, connect, and communicate in powerful ways.

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