Briggs & Stratton Corporation, headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, is the world’s largest producer of gasoline engines for outdoor power equipment. Its wholly owned subsidiaries include North America’s number one marketer of portable generators and pressure washers, and it is a leading designer, manufacturer, and marketer of lawn and garden and turf care through its Simplicity®, Snapper®, Ferris®, Murray®, Branco®, and Victa® brands. Briggs & Stratton products are designed, manufactured, marketed, and serviced in over 100 countries on six continents.
Briggs & Stratton’s Google Apps journey started in December 2012, when the company identified the need for the IT organization to work more collaboratively both internally and with vendor-partners to build, deliver, and support products and services. They needed to collaborate at the speed of “now.”
Briggs & Stratton followed Google and Maven Wave’s recommended three-stage approach for deploying Google Apps for the organization. The first step was to implement Google Apps for all of IT. If they expected the rest of the organization to find value in the platform, the team wanted to ensure it provided positive results for themselves first. The IT pilot was successful and quickly generated increased interest in the platform from users throughout the organization.
The second stage was to deploy Google Apps to a group of early adopters. The early adopter go-live served as a ‘dress rehearsal’ for the enterprise go-live, with early adopters encouraged to provide feedback on the end-to-end process. After addressing all feedback received, it was time to roll out Google Apps to the rest of the organization.
IT and early adopters were present in all offices on go-live day where they served as Google Guides. Guides were easily identified by their bright yellow shirts as they walked the halls to answer user questions and provide first-level support. This proven “Day 1” support model placed a strong focus on user experience and adoption, while significantly decreasing the number of Support Desk tickets.
A diligent change management approach was critical to the project’s success. Maven Wave worked closely with Briggs & Stratton to create and execute a change management plan focused on building both organizational awareness and excitement. Various communication channels including email, corporate intranet, and CEO video blogs were used to ensure all audiences were reached. Additionally, several training courses were offered before, during, and after the go-live week to help ease the transition. Both in-depth instructor-led training sessions and higher-level training videos were available to address all levels of experience. Maven Wave continues to work closely with Briggs & Stratton on Google Apps via Customer Success Services, a program focused on accelerating adoption and providing personalized technical support.
Maven Wave successfully delivered Google Apps to more than 4,000 end-user accounts on an aggressive eight-week schedule. A “follow-the-sun” deployment approach was used for the end-user population spanning 19 countries, 6 continents, and 9 time zones. Proactive training, communication and hands-on end-user support prior to and during the deployment led to overwhelmingly positive results.
Briggs & Stratton designated a Product Manager responsible for Google Apps within the organization to drive further integration between critical business processes and the Google Apps technology platform. In addition, key success metrics for Google Apps are closely tracked, including product adoption, product optimization, customer satisfaction, and advanced functionality usage.