A Customer Success Story

Cardinal Health: Centralizing Global Social Recognition

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Cardinal Website

Headquartered in Dublin, Ohio, Cardinal Health is a global, integrated healthcare services and products company. Its 48,000 employees in more than 40 countries provide customized solutions for hospital systems, pharmacies, ambulatory surgery centers, clinical laboratories, and physician offices worldwide. In fact, Cardinal Health solutions are in more than 90% of United States hospitals and support more than 10,000 physician offices nationwide.

At its core, Cardinal Health believes in fostering an inclusive environment where all employees feel like they can build a strong future, grow personally and professionally, and enjoy their work, while making meaningful contributions.

With Bravo as our recognition program, we’ve been able to increase the recognition moments substantially and with a sustained and significant increase in employee engagement and recognition scores from our VOE [voice of the employee survey].

Melanue Filas
Former Vice President of Compensation at Cardinal Health
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150,000 recognition moments since 2015

The challenge

“Being a global company, employee recognition meant something different in almost every organization and business unit,” recalls Amanda Linard, former director, compensation at Cardinal Health.

Prior to working with Workhuman, Cardinal Health had a cash-based rewards program that allowed managers to recognize their employees sporadically. But because it was only used by 10% of the organization and mainly in the United States, it wasn’t creating a great experience or providing any return on investment for the organization.

What’s more, Cardinal Health’s voice of the employee (VOE) survey showed that employees were craving more recognition from their peers, not just their managers. How could recognition be more visible and social? Was there a way to be more inclusive of Cardinal Health’s offline workers in distribution centers and manufacturing sites?”

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3.4-point increase in recognition scores on voice of the employee (VOE) survey

The solution

Cardinal Health partnered with Workhuman to launch its first global, social recognition solution, Bravo, designed to support a culture of recognition and appreciation across the entire organization.

Bravo is tied back to Cardinal Health’s core values of being accountable, tenacious, enthusiastic, genuine, inventive, inclusive, and trusted. This means that every recognition moment reinforces and highlights the right behaviors of the employee being recognized. And through Bravo’s internal social newsfeed, even colleagues in different business units, sitting in different countries, can read, congratulate, and amplify recognition moments.

Bravo also meets the needs of Cardinal Health’s offline workers through Workhuman’s mobile app, which allows them to recognize peers’ efforts and behaviors, redeem for rewards, and congratulate their colleagues – all from their phone.

We have a very offline population – a lot of distribution workers and field workers that aren’t necessarily sitting in front of a computer. So, having the ability for them to pull out their phone and quickly access the app and easily recognize a colleague or to get their recognition right there on their phone in their timeframe is key. And it’s so easy,” says Melanie Filas, former vice president, compensation at Cardinal Health.

How did Cardinal Health communicate the new program to all 48,000 employees? “We
don’t have a ton of resources to support our global recognition program,” says Linard. “So it was important for us to find a partner that really felt like an extended part of our team.” As that partner, Workhuman helped Cardinal Health create customized communications and manager toolkits in 14 languages.

Support for Bravo comes directly from Cardinal Health’s leadership team. Former Chairman and CEO George S. Barrett even sent a recognition video to every employee the day Bravo launched. “We had just acquired a couple of smaller companies. To get a welcome message from the CEO of the company you just joined was very powerful,” says Linard.

Man and woman working on laptop together

76% recipient reach and Measurable improvements in manager effectiveness, inclusiveness, recognition, and employee engagement.

The result

Since Bravo’s launch, there have been more than 150,000 recognition moments across the Cardinal Health employee base. Seventy-six percent of the workforce has been recognized through Bravo, up from 10 percent adoption with the cash-based solution. “Without Workhuman’s help, we would have never been able to measure that. Showing how many people are using the program was one way to show the ROI,” says Linard.

At the same time, recognition scores increased by 3.4 points on the VOE and Cardinal Health has seen measurable improvements in manager effectiveness, inclusiveness, recognition, and employee engagement. Robust backend recognition data and analytics is also giving managers and leaders new information to determine which values are being used by which team in real time and social connections throughout the organization.

Cardinal Health employees are enjoying more choice and meaningful rewards. “We have a great story of an employee who saved his points to buy his mother a stove through Bravo,” says Linard. “It’s very touching to see how this program has impacted employees.”

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