A multilingual intranet to unite an international workforce

Daikin's journey towards a global brand experience that inspires, instructs and involves dispersed and multi-profile audiences

Air conditioning and heating manufacturing industry giant Daikin Europe needed a new multilingual intranet to facilitate collaboration and communication across an international workforce spread out in five countries.

The Client

Daikin Europe is air conditioning & heating manufacturing industry giant, headquartered in Belgium. The group has more than 12.000 employees working across its sites in Belgium, The Netherlands, the UK, Italy and the Middle East.

The Challenge

Daikin Europe needed a new multilingual intranet to facilitate collaboration and communication across an international workforce across Belgium, The Netherlands, the UK, Italy and the Middle East. Their old intranet was outdated and the technology it used was not supported anymore. So Daikin Europe needed a new modern intranet to enhance collaboration and communication.

The Solution

  • A multilingual intranet with individual Valo Intranet hubs
  • The ability to customize content feeds to different departments and locations
  • Newsfeeds can appear in different formats such as carousel, standard and compact
  • Leveraging Microsoft Power Automate by adding metadata to news articles

Daikin Europe’s primary need was for a multilingual intranet platform that would function in English, Dutch and Italian. For internal communications, the priority was to be able to share news at a corporate level. But the different operations in the different countries also wanted their own space to share local content.

It was equally important for departments to be able to edit their own content, for example, pages, news and documents. After searching for a new intranet and receiving different proposals for Office 365-based platforms, Daikin Europe chose to implement Valo Intranet with Amplexor, Valo Premium Partner.

“The feedback has been positive because compared to our old intranet environments, Valo is very straightforward. It was easy to learn how to work with it.”

Barbara De Loor
Internal Communications Officer, Daikin Europe

An out-of-the-box solution

The company’s preference was an Office 365 solution. Daikin Europe looked at intranet-in-a-box solutions as well as implementing a custom developed intranet on SharePoint. This wasn’t really an option due to a significantly longer project lead time. Daikin Europe chose Valo Intranet as it offered most of the intranet features that Daikin Europe needed and because it comes in a package that was ready to implement.

Daikin Europe liked that Valo follows the Microsoft road map. This means if there are changes and updates there is no need for Daikin’s IT to be involved or extra development time. Everything is managed by Valo.

Amplexor provided Daikin Europe with a small, free demo environment to play around with for a month. This helped with familiarising the team with the platform and testing its usability. Daikin Europe also ran workshops where key users from each department learnt how to use each application as well as identify potential areas for customization or new features needed.

One Valo hub per affiliate and per language

Compared to basic SharePoint, Valo Intranet offers a lot of additional features such as the option of targeting news to some affiliates or departments. Daikin Europe chose one separate Valo Intranet hub per affiliate per language.

The setup is completely separate from each other but there is network level shared content across all the hubs. For instance, news articles or centralized departments like IT. The content editor shares the content across the group.

The only thing the separate intranets have in common is the layout and the homepage which has the same look and feel, as well as the headquarter news and some shared news articles. The same goes for the site pages which keep the same structure. Each affiliate has its own manager with their own responsibilities and freedom to add content.

“Each department is now responsible for its own content and it is easier for new people to learn how to use Valo. In the past, you needed a big manual for our old intranet to get something published. It was really awful.”

Arne Vlietinck
Functional Analyst, Daikin Europe

The Result

Easy to use
Because Daikin Europe has a global workforce they had a few more complex requirements. It was important to be able to share content between hubs. For example, share an English news article with the Italian hub.

Favorite features

Some of the favorite features include the ‘Our People’ tool which helps to introduce new colleagues and announce new hires.
Thanks to Valo Intranet, Daikin Europe can react fast to changes in the organization. The old intranet was much more static. As a consequence, when any department needed to change anything, they had to contact someone from HR, whereas now, the responsibility is shared out.

Now key workers from each department can work autonomously. They don’t need to ask HR if they want to change documents or information, as they can do it themselves.

A great tool for remote workers

For remote workers, Valo’s features really come into their own. The news banner catches people’s eye with new information. Some departments use their intranet page as a dashboard to locate other tools and find documents relevant to that department, and the company encourages employees to use SharePoint to share documents. With a multi-national workforce, Valo Intranet helps with communication and knowledge sharing.

Daikin Europe have already recommended Valo to another company. They are extremely happy with Valo Intranet as a product as they’ve been able to customize the platform and to adapt it to their needs. As the team says, “we are a happy customer”.

Discover how a Valo multilingual intranet can help you connect with your multi-national workforce!