What is our primary use case?
We are using Spigit primarily to forge crowdsource ideas from our large team member base on specific strategic questions that we have currently to either improve our business or continue to transform the business. We also can really engage our team members in a very collaborative manner. We have several different brands under our parent advance auto umbrella. Therefore, being able to tap into all of that and create a very cohesive, innovative culture.
How has it helped my organization?
I have to share with you about the first challenge that we ever ran into. It was around the do it yourself part of our business. We are a big retailer. We have a commercial side as well as the do it yourself side. The first challenge was surrounding that experience for our customers, and the ideas came from our store team members. Everybody was welcome to participate from corporate, and from the supply chain as well. Interestingly enough, the individuals who came up with the idea were a part-time driver and a store associate. Together, they formed the team. The idea that they provided was a way for us to not only improve the customer's experience but also to improve our team members' knowledge about the parts that we do sell and how we can make sure that in the long run we are able to provide a way for team members to continue learning, continue growing, and stay with the company.
That was last year that we collected the idea, and there were some back-end software things that we needed to develop. About a year later, we just rolled it out to all our stores, and we're already noticing very quick results in team members being able to increase the units per transaction. On our side, we're still waiting on getting full results. It hasn't been a full quarter yet since we rolled it out, but we're already seeing some positive things. We're hoping to see really what the big dollar amount is for increased units per transaction. For this project overall, we have seen ROI.
The biggest impact of using Planview would be that we were able to bridge the silos which existed between a lot of different departments or even locations. We have a very large team member base of about 75,000 employees across various different parts of the country. Being able to bridge that gap and have a way for everybody to communicate together to collaborate together, that was a first for our organization. That's been one of the most valuable things that we've seen. We also see those results in our organizational health survey as well. Our team members truly feel like this is a very inclusive, innovative company. That's been beneficial.
What is most valuable?
The most valuable thing we've seen is how much it is such a great opportunity for our team members to have a voice. Now, we have all of the analytical options in the back-end to be able to provide real results, metrics, and impact to our executive team and also show results. So, it's not just the conceptual part, but we were able to transition that all the way through. Being able to bridge that gap has been a very valuable aspect.
It's been pretty easy to use. Overall, most of our team members who are using it to submit ideas are very happy with the layout, the format, etc. The experience for me as an administrator of being able to set up the challenge and make the changes within the website could be a bit improved. When you're going to edit a page, that tiny little page that pops out, not being able to click and drag things, everything being in columns, or it being just text-based. It has a lot of limitations. For that piece, our marketing and communications teams have taken a look and navigated, as an administrator, inside of the site too, giving pretty much the same feedback.
Those have been the only issues.
What needs improvement?
The mobile experience right now isn't necessarily a very seamless experience. We've had several team members bring up issues that they have had with it not being very intuitive. It's like a scaled down version of the web version that's currently available. I think just the layout and being able to kind of access things is not the same experience, which is why we had the conversation with the mobile app development team. We're really interested in seeing what the upgrades and changes are.
Those are some of the things that are very essential to us since we do have a large team member base and we do have a lot of them who are out in locations where they don't have access to a desktop or laptop to sit down. Something that is very user-friendly on a mobile version because we have team members who are driver team members out in warehouses. We want to tap into their ideas and voices as well. So, this will allow for an increase in engagement.
For how long have I used the solution?
We've been using Spigit for about a year and a half. I believe we are on the latest version. We just had the update that went live during the June to July time frame.
What do I think about the stability of the solution?
The platform is pretty stable. Our biggest issue would be whenever there is an update or upgrade version, there are some things that break in the links between some of the login things on the back-end. The Planview team has done a great job of trying to put together information ahead of time and having different sessions to inform us. However, there are some things that we always end up finding in the test sessions after the updates have been done. Once we get those things ironed out, it's perfectly fine until the next upgrade. We've gone through about three upgrades, and it's happened all three times. That's the biggest pain point that we've had. Other than that, the platform has been very consistent.
What do I think about the scalability of the solution?
There are definitely a lot of opportunities for scalability, especially within our organization. We have several different brands, so being able to incorporate them as well as potentially even being able to explore the options of incorporating our commercial clients. Then, maybe very long-term down the road, potentially exploring even external customers.
How are customer service and technical support?
I love our Spigit team and the team that I have been working with. Anytime we have any issues that are quick, the IT team has been very quick to respond. Overall, the experience has been fantastic. Even though we have these little things that we feel can be improved upon, it's been an amazing experience.
I would like to mention Sam Head and Adrianne Rehn from the Spigit team.
Which solution did I use previously and why did I switch?
This was brand new. We were looking into several other options as well. Internal, it was just manpower solutions, then other cloud sourcing platforms as well. Overall, after seeing all the capabilities that Spigit allows, especially with the back-end analysis, that was a very key determining factor for us. Also, the amount of hands-on support that we have on demand pretty much was another determining factor in being able to make the partnership with Spigit.
Choosing Spigit was mainly because we want to make sure that the program was scalable. Since we do have a large number of team members, we didn't want to have just a random Excel spreadsheet, or something, that was very manual and tedious. Also, when we started the program, we didn't have a full-time team member who was dedicated to this. Everybody was volunteering their time. So, we needed to make sure that this was something that was easy to automate and we had a way to continue to scaling it out to include as many team members as possible.
How was the initial setup?
It was pretty straightforward, I think the fact that we had someone that worked with us the first time. We laid out exactly the different stages within our program and having the back-end criteria for evaluation already predefined helped us out. We had also several different training sessions where someone from Spigit flew out and trained our team. That also helped us out. We were also able to conduct different little workshop sessions prior.
We did a premortem to ensure that if there were going to be any issues that we thought about as many of them as possible ahead of time. We then tried to find workarounds, solutions, or ways to prevent them altogether to ensure that the whole launch, then the rest of the whole program was a success. Also, it ensured that there was continued integrity in the program. We made sure from the beginning to make our brand as positive, straightforward, and transparent possible.
What about the implementation team?
We had a Spigit team member who was assigned to us to help us through the whole process. It was a guided process. Once we launched the first one, there was a handover. They sort of helped us out with being able to transition all of that information and knowledge sharing to be able to set everything up ourselves. Now, we're completely autonomous and able to crank these things out. So, we have a very well-defined process in place now.
What was our ROI?
We have not yet seen ROI because we're waiting for the report to come out at the end of the quarter.
What's my experience with pricing, setup cost, and licensing?
Our procurement team worked out all the details of the licensing costs.
Which other solutions did I evaluate?
I don't even remember their name. It was so long ago, like three years. We only had one conversation with them.
What other advice do I have?
I would definitely say have a conversation. Talk about your specific needs for the platform because there are some things that you can investigate, like other creative ways of using the platform that maybe we haven't thought about. Having that initial conversation going through, seeing a demo, and experiencing it on your own, it will enable you to have that better knowledge and decision-making.
I would rate it an eight (out of 10), because of the issues that we've had with the upgrade stuff.