How a Branded Intranet Can Increase Employee Engagement Globally

Internal branding and employee experience are extremely important because they create a consistent collaborative culture that keeps employees engaged.

At Church’s Chicken, we recently performed a comprehensive rebranding required communication to all of our domestic and international franchises, as well as all of their employees. To complicate matters even further, the majority of Church’s Chicken employees work in the field for the majority of their shifts, which can make sharing information with them challenging. Rather than engaging in a protracted education campaign, we instead committed ourselves to revamping our digital workplace to reach all of our employees quickly, while also providing them with new tools that can improve productivity and engagement. 

In this article, we will share some of the lessons we learned through our digital workplace transformation that other food chains and restaurants can benefit from.

Not sure what your employee challenges are? Ask them.

Not sure what your employee challenges are? Ask them.

We started by evaluating our internal intranet. In our case, our ‘Team Church’s’ intranet was a bare-bones, outdated version of Microsoft SharePoint. Employees didn’t like to use the site.   Content was disorganized or up-to-date, and the site navigation was difficult. Adoption of Team Church’s was dropping, so we knew we needed to revamp our intranet to serve as the foundation of our digital workplace. 

We also wanted to tap into Church’s employees to both validate our views on their primary challenges and identify new ones. There are various methods for conducting that stakeholder research – such as user surveys, interviews, workshops, observation, and data analytics tools. The results of our survey provided us with the insights we needed to create a unified strategy, purpose, and new tools workers wanted for Team Church’s. Employees told us to focus on searchability, simplifying the UI, enhancing self-service capabilities, increasing accessibility, directing them towards relevant content and creating a visually appealing design. Without this input from our workforce, it’s possible that we would have wasted time and money on a digital workplace that didn’t satisfy our employees’ needs fully.

Our employees had spoken! Less is more when it came to employee experience. They wanted a central information hub that could be accessed from anywhere on any device and also housed all of their productivity tools. 


The revamped Team Church’s offered employees a new, modern intranet that featured our updated branding, including the new bold colors, logos, photos, and font. We used the Akumina Employee Experience Platform to help us organize content by job role, and its open architecture allowed us to integrate solutions for our employees. Employees can access up-to-date information via desktop or mobile devices at any time. 

We also surpassed our employees’ expectations by making it easier for franchisees to communicate with one another through a forum we call ‘Church’s Chatter.’ This space allowed franchise owners to discuss challenges they were having with the rebranding in real-time and identify solutions based on their peers’ experience. Creating a vibrant community is difficult across all of our geographies, though vital to the organization’s success. Building tools that enabled this type of connection helps owners establish relationships they otherwise may not have been made. 

The new Team Church’s has been more efficient and user-friendly, improving usage significantly (from 20 percent to 90 percent) while increasing productivity and advancing employee engagement. Transforming our digital workplace enabled us to reach more people and provide them with the tools they need to succeed. Facilitating communication within the restaurant industry is critical, and we were able to do that by creating a central hub where employees could share content, news, and become successful members of our community.