By using Podio FDB is enhancing productivity by reducing email clutter, supporting flexible ways of working, and by developing software solutions on the go. Digital Director Morten Gade tells us how Podio helps him and his colleges get real work done.
Morten Gade heads the seven person department for digital business and media development at FDB, one of Denmark’s largest membership organizations and owner of the country’s largest chain of grocery shops, Coop.
He recently returned from a three month paternity leave. Expecting a chaotic email inbox he had booked two full days for going through messages. But he was pleasantly surprised to find that only 1200 emails – or 17 per day – had entered his inbox. In addition to this there were 300 Podio inbox messages waiting for him.
Morten Gade attributes this lack of a messaging storm to good email routines without unnecessary forwarding as well as the hierarchical ordering of Podio messages: “We utilise a dedicated Podio space for company wide announcements. When that is separated from all the loose chatter in the Facebook-like activity stream, it is much easier for me to get to the important stuff”.
Less control, more apps, higher productivity
“While I was away on paternal leave, my employees created an app for holiday scheduling, thus reducing the amount of emails going around. It was a great idea!”
Thus the messaging culture is not the only thing transformed at FDB – also the management/staff command chain is being positively challenged through Podio. Having management make room for the individual employee structuring his or her work is a fine balance to strike. For Morten Gade trusting his employees to make the right decisions is key:“In general I encourage my employees to sidestep the normal hierarchical decision making when they see that the flow of their work can be improved”.
Do-It-Yourself software development
Not only has Podio has the empowered FDB employees, the grander process of developing digital systems for collecting and distributing information within the company has also been short-circuited. Resulting in huge cost cutting: “Currently we are building a Podio seminar database app that handles registration, tracking of attendees and so on. By not buying a specialised piece of software for this we save a six digit amount (ed.: in Danish kroner, which equals 13.000-130.000 €)”
This level of cost cutting is usually achieved by opting for off-the-shelve software solutions that do not deliver the same kind of customisation as specially developed software. But with Podio apps Morten Gade and FDB has and found a third and better way, saving resources: “As I see it, even proprietary one-size-fits-all systems can’t do those last 10% that you want it to do. For that you need a specially developed system, and then you’re stuck with something that is often horribly supported”
Thus, FDB benefits from this by minimizing development time and costs, and by keeping future support costs at a minimum. Leaving more time and resources to get real work done.