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Today, the employee experience is more important than ever. To boost workforce engagement, satisfaction, and retention, companies are turning to employee recognition programs that enable managers and coworkers to honor the successes and milestones of their team members. But managing such programs is increasingly difficult in the face of changing workplace cultures and employee mind-sets.

As teams spread globally and offices shift to remote models, managers can no longer simply walk to an employee’s desk to deliver an award or gift. Not only that, but employees have also become accustomed to the online shopping channels they enjoy in their personal lives, which empower them to easily find and order what they need. These expectations extend to their e-commerce experiences as they shop for company rewards or select one for a coworker.

O.C. Tanner knows that modern workplace challenges require modern solutions. For more than 90 years, the company has manufactured custom products that acknowledge employees’ hard work. O.C. Tanner also provides employee recognition software and an e-commerce experience that enables companies and their employees to customize their rewards and place orders quickly.

How did deploying SAP Customer Experience solutions help O.C. Tanner overcome gaps in its customer experience?

For O.C. Tanner, the challenges posed by modern ways of working make an even greater case for employee recognition. Without the traditional gatherings, it’s hard for teams to create a strong sense of camaraderie. Leaders at O.C. Tanner believe in the value of employee recognition in empowering successful and productive workforces. This begins with the company’s digital catalog.

Using O.C. Tanner’s digital catalog, employees can easily use points awarded through their company’s employee recognition program to purchase rewards for themselves. HR managers can use the catalog to select and customize awards that celebrate an employee achievement, such as a 15-year anniversary. O.C. Tanner will then customize the selected product and ensure it makes it to the employee on time.

In fact, the company recently reimagined its catalog as a modern e-commerce experience that merges its custom-ordered and premade products. As the recipient browses their company’s shopping portal or app, the e-commerce experience pulls in notes from the gift’s sender. This reminds employees that their gift comes from their team and as a direct result of their hard work – strengthening workplace ties, no matter the distance between coworkers.

Such a streamlined, all-in-one e-commerce experience helps O.C. Tanner emphasize the celebratory aspect of employee recognition. If employees are receiving a reward based on their value to their company, it’s counterintuitive to provide a cumbersome e-commerce experience. After all, what kind of message does an employee recognition program send if employees can’t find or redeem rewards they want?

How did O.C. Tanner modernize its platform?

O.C. Tanner modernized its back-end systems to create a better front-end e-commerce experience by using SAP solutions. After implementing SAP Customer Experience solutions, including SAP Commerce Cloud, SAP Marketing Cloud, and SAP Sales Cloud solutions, the company removed more than 20 years’ worth of legacy software and complicated process customizations. While these customizations enabled employees to custom order products, they bogged down the business and restricted agility.

Today, O.C. Tanner runs on an integrated portfolio of solutions that provide a tailored experience for each customer and remove barriers to interoperability. Customers’ employee engagement programs are set up to succeed with modern e-commerce, built-in marketing, and intelligent pricing capabilities.

To learn more about O.C. Tanner’s digital transformation, we connected with Sarah Williams, Director of Product Management at O.C. Tanner at SAPPHIRE NOW Converge. In the interview, she describes how the employee reward company went about its digital transformation.