Editor's note: Today’s guest blogger is Peter Shorney, Global IT Operations Manager at Rentokil Initial, an international services business based in the UK. The company works across 60 countries and offers services including pest control, hygiene services, workwear laundering and interior and exterior landscaping. See what other organizations that have gone Google have to say.
Whether it's getting rid of pests, cleaning up a crime scene or tending to office plants, Rentokil Initial is a service business whose primary aim is to offer customers the best possible standard. This can only be achieved if teams work closely together, sharing expertise and ideas and communicating constantly.
We used to have 180 email domains and 40 mail systems in place, so finding contact details and responding quickly to colleagues was a challenge. To tackle this, in 2009, we moved 35,000 business users, including our ‘on the road’ service technicians and salespeople onto a single communications platform, Google Apps.
Since switching to Google Apps, we’ve saved millions of pounds (£) on IT maintenance and several hundred thousand pounds by cutting the time spent on administrative tasks through using tools such as Google Docs, Sites and Forms. For senior management, Hangouts have also proved their worth, saving roughly 54 hours of the senior management’s time a week - that’s over 2,000 hours a year.
As well as maximizing productivity, online sharing through Google Apps has meant we can now use the group’s size and combined expertise to our advantage by spreading knowledge and ideas organically across countries and divisions.
Individual teams have fully embraced the opportunity for knowledge sharing, using the group intranet, powered by Google Sites, to post training videos and access technical images. But it’s not all about official documents and meetings: online sharing is helping us to become a more personal, sociable organization, which is important for staff retention and working culture. Colleagues use our intranet to share personal achievements, from sleeping on the streets for a homeless charity to boxing in international championships, giving a true flavor of the diversity within the company.
Employees at all levels are embracing Google Apps to connect with colleagues. For example our UK Managing Director uses Google+ to post updates and pictures of his ‘road trips’ across the UK and his encounters with colleagues, from the CFO to our longest standing pest control technicians, providing new insight into his role in the business. Our 35 graduate trainees also have their own Google Group to share work experiences in the company. The ability to connect directly with our executives and create communities amongst our new employees is radically changing and modernizing the culture of our company.
All in all, we’ve been amazed by the journey which Google Apps has taken us on, connecting our teams no matter where they are and no matter what they’re doing and making a difference in almost every corner of our business. Thanks to Google Apps we see ourselves as better connected, able to offer a better service to customers and more competitive on a global scale.