Migrates 10,000+ employees in 1 week seamlessly
Google Cloud Results
• Migrates employees to Google Workspace in one week without interrupting service or employee productivity
• Increases collaboration between different departments and offices
• Rapid adoption of Google Drive at 85% and Google Sheets at 70%
Banco de Crédito e Inversiones (SSE: Bci) is Chile’s third-largest bank, with total assets exceeding US$47 billion and international risk ratings of “A” from Standard & Poors, “A1” from Moodys, and “A-” from Fitch. With operations in Miami and representative offices in Mexico, Lima, São Paulo, Madrid, Bogota, and Shanghai, Bci holds a solid position across all market segments where it is present. Bci is part of the Santiago Stock Exchange index and serves millions of customers in Chile, Latin America, and Florida. The bank’s excellent corporate governance and its 80-year history in Chile’s banking industry are a source of pride and strength for the institution.
Bci’s decision to adopt Google Workspace grew out of changing expectations from its employees and customers who are increasingly comfortable using internet-based tools and services. “Half our our employees are millennials,” says Luis Felipe Hirane Sarkis, Head of Change Management at Bci. “The traditional ways banks work don’t make sense to them. We need to evolve to meet their changing expectations.” Getting closer to its increasingly digitally engaged customer base was also important. To do that, Bci decided it needed a digital transformation that would bring interactions between employees and with customers closer to their more intuitive digital experiences with consumer apps.
The right tools for collaborating
“Google Workspace is much more intuitive to use than other collaboration suites. It’s closer to the many different tools and apps our employees use every day outside work.” - Luis Felipe Hirane Sarkis, Head of Change Management, Bci Corporation
Bci began the transformation journey by focusing on its employees. To encourage collaboration and increase productivity, Bci needed greater support for working off-site, including finding ways to replace in-person and telephone meetings with simple, reliable videoconferencing. Bci also hoped to move beyond email as the means for sharing and document collaboration: previously, most document collaboration had been limited to email attachments, because the existing Lotus Notes toolset didn’t support multiple authors simultaneously.
The bank’s Human Resources department, which drove this initiative, predicted that providing more modern collaboration tools could spark a culture change. The change would not only increase productivity and reduce travel costs, but also help the bank compete for talented employees who prefer a more participatory and technologically modern workplace.
After researching productivity and collaboration tools, Bci embarked on a pilot, with 100 people using Microsoft tools and 100 people using Google Workspace for three months. The pilot included a survey of these users as well as a technical analysis by the IT team. The results of the survey were clear: the Google users quickly began working more collaboratively, while the other users didn’t change their way of working as much. “Google Workspace is much more intuitive to use than other collaboration suites,” says Luis Felipe. “It’s closer to the many different tools and apps our employees use every day outside work.”
Embracing new ways of working
“Having Google Workspace means that we have a powerful platform that not only includes corporate email, but also multiple enterprise tools that work as a foundation of innovation, driving collaboration and improving the productivity of our teams.” - Eugenio Von Chrismar, CEO, Bci Corporation
To reinforce the need for cultural change, Bci promoted the move internally, using the motto “collaboration for your work.” Google Workspace was immediately popular with Bci staff. In fact, 95% of the company approved of the change, and when the decision was announced at an annual company meeting in March 2017, employees spontaneously gave it a standing ovation.
“Having Google Workspace means that we have a powerful platform that not only includes corporate email, but also multiple enterprise tools that work as a foundation of innovation, driving collaboration and improving the productivity of our teams,” announced Eugenio Von Chrismar, CEO at Bci Corporation during the annual meeting.
Bci was concerned about the technical aspects of the full-company migration and had assembled a careful go-live plan and a cross-site team to handle any problems. The migration to Google Workspace, which was supported by Google staffers and Google Cloud Premier Partner Tigabytes, was seamless despite its scale.
“Right after migrating more than 10,000 people to Google Workspace, we expected a lot of questions from employees,” explains Juan Pablo Delpiazzo Antón from the Change Management International Division at Bci. “With help from Google and Tigabytes, nothing happened! People continued working without interruption.” A Google Form created to capture end user questions about the migration received 50 submissions that week. More than half of them were password recovery requests and other inquiries unrelated to Google Workspace.
The Google Workspace migration was uneventful because Bci closely followed the change management model Google suggested. For example, before migrating all 10,000 employees, Bci started with 425 IT team members. Next, Bci moved a second round of employees—a total of 1,100 people who volunteered—across all areas of the bank. By following this model, Bci was able to anticipate nearly 100% of the potential incidents that the rest of the employees might experience.
Because it is a managed service, migrating to Google Workspace has eliminated the technical burden of maintaining the servers used to support the bank’s previous environment. This change not only reduces spending on hardware but has also allowed Bci to reallocate headcount it had assigned to system maintenance and support calls.
Transforming culture and building connections
Since adopting Google Workspace, Bci is seeing increased collaboration across parts of the company that rarely communicated before. For example, the salesforce uses Google Forms to collect information in interviews with potential clients. Team members in the Business Intelligence area use the information to generate offers for those prospective clients, which enables a faster time to market.
“When they exchange emails in Gmail, bank employees can see the face of the client, and clients can see the faces of the employees. This small change has accomplished one of the things we wanted from this transformation–to be closer to the customer.” — Juan Pablo Delpiazzo Antón, Change Management International Division, Bci Corporation
Employees now regularly use Google Chat and Google Meet to connect, and they frequently collaborate in Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides, often across remote sites that need to collect and present their combined data. Google Workspace has especially improved frequency of collaboration between the bank’s offices in Chile and the United States.
An added advantage of adopting Google Workspace has been increased customer interaction. Because so many customers use Gmail, bank representatives who communicate by email with clients have begun conducting business in Google Meet as needed, providing real-time engagement and assistance. Profile pictures in Google Workspace offer an automatic connection.
“When they exchange emails, bank employees can see the face of the client, and clients see the faces of employees,” says Juan Pablo. “This small change has accomplished one of the things we wanted from this transformation–to be closer to the customer.” The connection gets even closer when using the videoconferencing features in Google Meet.
Google Workspace has increased productivity by creating culture change, including by engaging workers who didn’t grow up as digital natives. Six months after the transition, during an off-site meeting, a team of 10 employees from different parts of the company were asked to gather their findings into a critical presentation to the CEO within two weeks.
Initially, members of the team who were enthusiastic PowerPoint users resisted, but as the project proceeded, the entire team was impressed by how easy Google Slides was to use, as well as how smoothly multiple people could work in the same presentation while moving between Google Meet, Gmail, and Slides. When the teams returned to their home offices, they increased their use of Google Workspace because they saw how it could really improve their productivity and the connection to other Bci teams.
While the previous email system was entirely replaced by Gmail with no other option provided, Bci has seen large-scale adoption of the rest of Google Workspace around the company, with 85% of employees using Google Drive and 70% using Google Sheets. And Bci is seeing adoption grow, as a more connected workforce promotes the efficiencies to coworkers across different areas.
To ease the onboarding process, Bci and Tigabytes jointly developed a Google Workspace training portal. Employees used the portal to perform practical exercises, such as sending email and creating and sharing documents. Google Workspace APIs enabled Bci IT team members to see when an employee completed the training. The training portal was key to the success of the Google Workspace rollout.
Bci and Tigabytes also created a Key Performance Indicator they called the “collaboration index,” designed to effectively measure collaboration at Bci. The index measures the percentage of employees who collaborate by sharing files, and who comment or edit files that others shared with them. Three months after Bci went live with Google Workspace, the collaboration index was at 13%. By April 2018, the index had climbed to 45%. Bci’s Management of Innovation and People Management department stands out with nearly 100% of employees actively collaborating with each other and with other departments.
Seeing this transition at Bci isn’t a complete surprise to the bank’s leadership, who continually promote a culture of collaboration and innovation, says Juan Pablo. “When people realized that our team was working on this project, they’d stop us in the elevators and ask, ‘When am I going to be able to use Google Workspace?’ With this much enthusiasm, we knew we were moving in the right direction.”
*Google Workspace was formerly known as G Suite prior to Oct. 6, 2020.