How The American Psychological Association Creates Employee Connection Through Video

leveling up internal communications

Brittany Nardi
May 19, 2022 · 3 min read
How The American Psychological Association Creates Employee Connection Through Video

American Psychological Association (APA) was looking for a way to internally communicate with their team members differently from just the same everyday email, especially when they went remote at the start of the pandemic.

Enter Gratavid.

Gratavid is a tool that allows organizations to create personalized videos at scale and send them via email or text. 

APA partnered with Gratavid to create weekly updates using videos to share with their employees every Monday. It made a fun way to start each week. Sending Gratavids exceeded their expectations and met the needs of human connectedness that had been missing for quite some time. 

Campaign Objective

 APA was looking for a way to connect and internally communicate with their employees since going virtual. They felt as though certain touchpoints with their colleagues were missing and wanted a way to meet the needs that used to be met when they were all in person together. They were looking to share messages that communicated their organization’s values while also reducing email clutter with news from all over the organization. 

 “It's hard during a pandemic to connect with your colleagues. We were trying to figure out how to form social connections while being physically distant from each other, and of course, there's email, and there’s Zoom, but we all grow tired of these things. We were looking for something fun and unique.” - Tara Davis, Director of Internal Communications & Staff Wellbeing at American Psychological Association.

 According to a recent study done by Upwork, 36.2 million Americans will be remote by 2025, which is double pre-pandemic levels, so finding a way to still connect with their colleagues when they can’t be face-to-face was critical for APA.

Solution

APA turned to Gratavid for help.

Instead of the weekend update from Saturday Night Live, they preview the week every Monday telling their employees what they need to know and the top stories for the week. Gratavid seemed like the perfect way to personally connect with their colleagues fun and unique way.

“We were so excited about utilizing Gratavid. Using the videos to feature employees across APA, our weekly news updates for staff have breathed life into them, and our employees feel more connected to each other and the organization.” - Katelynn Wiggins, Internal Communications and Staff Wellbeing Manager.

Featured in an article on Forbes, APA found that over 90% of employees who feel valued perform better and stay engaged at work. 

Results

Tara and her teammate Katelynn piloted it, and the response was incredible. Their employees loved getting this information in a different format while seeing people’s faces instead of just reading it. They loved hearing that they’re still going to get daily communication via email every day, but the video is the most important thing you need to pay attention to. 

Tara Davis profile pic

"The Gratavid software and team have blown our expectations out of the water. The software is so easy to use and intuitive. If you can’t figure something out, there are many helpful articles and videos to navigate your way. We have made some suggestions to the Gratavid team, and they have been able to implement some of them immediately. We love that our contacts can record on their own with one click, and the videos look so professional and eye-catching."

American Psychological Association logo
Tara Davis
American Psychological Association

Since their employees reacted so well to their initial videos, they decided to take it a step further. They utilized the video requesting feature to form social connections across their organization. 

They requested videos from people who had upcoming events or a new platform that they wanted to share. This allowed them to speak about their products and what mattered to them. They also used the video request feature to highlight new employees, introduce themselves, and share a little about them.

“All of a sudden, we have a string of awesome videos full of faces and voices across the organization. It was really beautiful because you could immediately tell it was meeting needs that had been there before. I’m just so thankful for the Gratavid platform and how it has connected us all as humans.” - Tara Davis, Director of Internal Communications & Staff Wellbeing at American Psychological Association.

Here are some of the fantastic responses they have received.

“Oh my gosh, I love seeing their faces! I haven’t seen them in two years.”

“I love the opportunity to connect with my colleague’s faces on Monday mornings.” 

“I got ten emails from across the organization. People are greeting me and welcoming me. It feels warm and inviting, especially while onboarding in a virtual environment.” 

 APA’s Top Tips

1. Add a piece of your personality into the video. Include your pet, your children, your favorite plant, or whatever connects us all as humans. These little things matter the most and make our colleagues feel as though they have the opportunity to “catch up” with their colleagues.

2. Get multiple people in your organization involved. Our employees get so excited to record videos to share with others. Our CEO loves that he can connect with his employees through video. It is beautiful that our team can collaborate on this and see new faces every week.

3. Share tips and tricks with your colleagues about recording. When asking people to record for the first time, take a few minutes to share tips for success with them. Encourage them to watch their video before submitting it to ensure that videos are good to go the first time. Let them know that they can always re-record; no stress! 

Are you looking for a fun way to connect with your colleagues too?

If the American Psychological Association team inspired you to up your internal communications in a unique way, schedule a demo with us today!

WRITTEN BY
Brittany Nardi
Customer Success Coordinator @ Gratavid
Brittany serves as the Customer Success Coordinator at Gratavid. Growing up in a small town surrounded by Mom and Pops, she understands the importance of supporting small businesses. As an extrovert, she thrives on communicating and cultivating relationships with others. She previously served as a Marketing Assistant for Invent@NMU, where she helped companies and nonprofits launch and succeed. Brittany is our platform guru.
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