Innovating in the face of a pandemic and developing employee stories content virtually: the Philips case study from Stories Incorporated.
Philips is a global leader in health technology. 130-years ago, the company’s first products were light bulbs, then expanded to consumer technologies. Today, Philips focuses on healthcare innovations and medical technologies that make people’s lives better all over the world. A team of 80,000 employees in over 100 countries make up the Philips workforce.
The Philips employer brand team wanted to create visually compelling and substantive employee story videos to support their Employer Value Proposition (EVP). They also wanted to create content that would target talent in several critical hiring areas: engineers, sales, precision diagnostics and marketing transformation. They partnered with Stories Inc. to create an employee story series. In early 2020, the teams planned visits to several of Philips’ U.S. offices to uncover and capture those stories.
Then, the pandemic hit.
Travel and onsite production were impossible.
The teams needed a virtual employee storytelling solution that wouldn’t sacrifice production value, while still giving candidates valuable insight into Philips’ culture.
Adjusting the Plan
Staying true to their deep history of innovation and creativity, Philips was up for trying something new. They were the first company Stories Inc. worked with to develop a solution for uncovering stories virtually to reflect our disrupted world of work.
The team quickly adjusted their story gathering methods to a virtual process that still honored the employee storyteller experience. The Stories Inc. team facilitated interviews that uncovered engaging, real stories and preserved the employee storyteller experience. But rather than face to face, the interviews happened screen to screen.
Instead of filming in the Philips office, the employees were interviewed from the safety of their own home offices. The Stories Inc. team adapted their most important in person production processes to accommodate employees working from home, while still maintaining high visual and audio quality. It was also important to create visual and audio consistency among every employee storyteller.
And, with change and innovation, opportunity arrived. A virtual storytelling experience removed geographic barriers, so Philips quickly expanded their storyteller participation to include team members from outside the US, too. A total of 12 team members from four countries—Brazil, Mexico, Panama, and the United States—shared stories of their Philips employee experiences and roles. Not only did this result in additional perspectives, the video series could now be used in more ways that could target talent outside the US as well.
Honoring Employee Stories
Storyteller comfort is essential to uncovering powerful stories.
It was important to bring as much of the in person interview experience to the virtual process. Each storyteller was shipped a custom video kit with HD video and audio equipment, lighting, a green screen and a detailed set up guide. Ahead of the interview, Stories Inc. walked each storyteller through the tech setup and spent time preparing them for the conversation.
On the day of their interview, Stories Inc. spent time with each Philips employee storyteller testing the audio and video so that the storytellers felt confident that they looked and sounded great.
As a result, the team found that the employee storytellers were extremely natural, relaxed and engaged during filming. The facilitated interviews themselves ran longer than planned—not due to technical difficulties, but because storytellers had so much to share! For the Spanish- and Portuguese-language interviews, professional translators joined the interview so storytellers could share their experiences in their native languages (although many storytellers were multilingual).
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After the stories were uncovered and captured, the Philips and Stories Inc. teams were able to follow the professional post-production process they had planned pre-COVID. Graphics, b-roll footage, photography, music and captions (in multiple languages) were incorporated into the editing process to supplement the stories.
The videos series includes six single-storyteller videos featuring personal and professional stories. Consistent visual and audio quality supported six additional video compilations, weaving together several team member perspectives to bring complex concepts like EVP and culture to life.
The Employee Story Series
The Philips employer branding and recruitment marketing teams were extremely happy with the employee story series. Maria Eugenia Velandia, Manager, Employer Brand & Recruitment Marketing, The Americas at Philips says,
“We are very proud of the work that was done for the Employee Stories series. We were able to adapt to the challenges that the pandemic presented to us and produce an outstanding series of videos that truly represents Philips, our brand, our culture and our purpose.”Maria Eugenia Velandia, Manager, Employer Brand & Recruitment Marketing, The Americas at Philips
The 12 videos communicate Philips’ culture and EVP, and also serve specific hiring needs, targeting candidate personas.
Philips Culture and EVP
These three EVP videos directly ladder up to the three pillars of Philips’ EVP.
At Philips, you reach your highest potential
This compilation video features several team members, in various positions and locations, sharing stories of ways they’ve been mentored and had opportunities to lead and grow at Philips.
At Philips, we create impact
Team members share stories of the direct connection they feel to the Philips company mission in this compilation video. They tell of the link they feel to the strategies they are developing and the changes they’re contributing to in healthcare.
At Philips, our culture is unique
Professional and personal stories of employee experience communicate out-of-the-ordinary support and appreciation for team members, and a one-of-a-kind way of thinking and working together.
Erika, part of the Quality and Regulatory team, shares a story of identifying a problem and seeing it as an opportunity. She tells how it resulted in developing a new product, and shares that process, from investigation to troubleshooting to completion.
Mentoring youth at Philips
Research scientist Amir shares the story of his idea to launch a program to mentor youth from the community by introducing them to STEM practices in healthcare. His story communicates Philips’ culture that supports employee’s ideas and investing in the healthcare leaders of tomorrow.
Liderando equipos en Philips (Translation: Leading teams at Philips)
Lin’s stories of a long career at Philips, full of leadership and growth, communicate Philips’ internal mobility and career opportunities. Recorded in both Spanish and English, this multilingual storyteller content can connect with global audiences.
Philips key hiring area: Sales
Demystifying patient care at Philips
Kim shares stories from her career on the sales team at Philips, from special scanners to mentorship opportunities.
Innovación y crecimiento (Translation: Innovation and growth)
Alejandra tells us about her experience in the sales team and how Philips has helped her develop in her professional career.
Philips key hiring area: Precision diagnostics
Precision Diagnostics at Philips
Krishna shares his passion for the Precision Diagnostics work, mission, and the impact the business is having.
Philips key hiring area: Marketing transformation
Marketing Transformation at Philips
Members of Philips’ marketing transformation team share their experiences and stories of helping find solutions in the healthcare market. They explain the personal, intangible rewards of being part of innovations that help patients personally, and change the market globally.
Philips key hiring area: Engineering
From the technology to the device at Philips
In this video optimized for social channels, team member Jonathan tells how different engineering teams work together in shared purpose at Philips.
Colaboração em uma empresa global (Translation: Collaboration in a global company)
Engineers working in architecture and software development at Philips in Brazil share stories that show that their jobs go far beyond writing code. They share how their innovative solutions help thousands of patients each year. Recorded in Portuguese, this video serves as great regional recruitment marketing content. And, its additional versions with subtitles in English and Spanish provide strong global content, too.
Philips cares for employees
Erika shared an incredible story that communicated the deep, authentic care Philips shows employees. We didn’t want to leave this great story on the cutting room floor, so we captured and produced this one as a gift for the Philips team.
A pandemic did not stop the Philips brand team from innovating
The Philips employer brand team was able to collect compelling stories of its culture and execute its recruitment marketing content plan … even in the midst of the global COVID-19 pandemic. As true to their brand, reputation and history, Philips was flexible, innovative and creative in the face of a challenge. They were able to create compelling recruitment marketing content that supported their hiring goals.
Additionally, this new process Latin American team members to be included in the project. Stories Inc. used the virtually-captured footage and wove it together with Philips’ b-roll, original graphics, captions and more professional post-production techniques. The results were videos honoring the stories, and brought Philips’ EVP, targeted team cultures, and universal culture to life.
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