Customer Success Story E.ON

Achieved Results

  • Supported E.ON’s modernization of learning
  • Helped prepare leaders for the energy transition
  • Collaborated with other learning providers to enhance learning
  • Supported learning in almost every part of the business

“getAbstract fits with our new learning culture – it’s about those few minutes of learning you regularly fit into your day.”

Sue Woods, Global Learning Media Expert

About E.ON

E.ON is one of the world’s largest energy providers. It was founded in Essen, Germany in 2000 and has over 40,000 employees worldwide. Due to the current energy transition and legislative changes in Germany, E.ON is undergoing structural and operational changes. Its employees now face the challenge of having to keep up with the transformation.

Business challenge

Change at E.ON is happening on all fronts. “Like most companies, we have the challenge of modernizing learning in a traditional industry,” says Sue Woods, Global Learning Media Expert at E.ON. “We want to encourage employees to take responsibility for their own learning and offer them more interactive, online methods. That’s an ongoing challenge, to motivate learners to go for what they want rather than to expect someone else to be in control of their learning.” At E.ON, modernizing learning is a key component of the company's rapid transformation. 

How getAbstract helped

“We’re in a market that is undergoing a lot of changes,” Woods continues. “We’re modernizing learning at a time when we have less money to spend on learning. We need to make sure that we get the most value out of everything we do.” And that’s exactly what the Learning and Development (L&D) team at E.ON set out to do. To bring their employees’ learning into the digital age, they created an online HR platform where employees can find answers to their most pressing questions. Integrated into this platform is their new Learning Management System (LMS) with all their new learning resources. And embedded seamlessly into both platforms is getAbstract. Through these platforms, every employee in the company has access to getAbstract’s library of compressed knowledge – including thousands of book and video talk summaries.

In its quest to modernize learning, E.ON seeks to give employees the opportunity to learn anytime, anywhere. This is where getAbstract comes in: “We’ve made getAbstract available to every employee. It’s a brilliant tool anyone can use to learn anytime, anywhere – whether it’s using the mobile app, pdf or kindle,” says Woods. “It absolutely fits with our new learning culture. It helps everyone recognize that learning isn’t about a classroom course that you go away for; it’s about those few minutes you regularly fit into your day.”  

E.ON adopted a 70-20-10 approach to learning: 70% on-the-job learning, 20% learning through others and 10% formal learning. getAbstract supports the new culture by offering relevant content at the right time. Employees find getAbstract particularly useful as a promoter of informal learning because they can access information whenever and wherever they need it.

At E.ON, change started at the top. The company invested in a 2020 Executive Leadership Program to help executives embrace their roles as leaders and encourage them to become pioneers of change. The Leadership Program addresses three challenges: “Build Our Future,” “Lead Our Transformation” and “Shape Our Culture.” getAbstract helped maintain momentum and supported each challenge by providing curated content around topics like “Inspiring and Leading in Times of Change” and “Adaptive Leadership.” Additionally, the getAbstract discussion platform encouraged discussions and collaboration.

With the energy transition moving at lightning speed, E.ON needed an efficient way to prepare employees for the company’s structural changes. But E.ON faced another challenge: a limited L&D team and budget. “We didn’t have the funds and resources to go out and talk to people face-to-face, so we put together a digital ‘Change Cube Toolkit’ with resources to help with the process – including getAbstract,” Woods says. “We also created a ‘change infographic’ to visualize the change journey. The resources in the toolkit were there to help in each phase.”

L&D also created a physical cube employees could walk through. The resources and change tools were posted on its walls. getAbstract offered summaries and flyers with reading recommendations about change and coping with change. With this campaign, E.ON focused on the human aspect of change, on helping employees cope with the energy transition and its repercussions. The Change Cube was a crucial step for E.ON’s development of a new learning culture and getAbstract was a great support. “The ‘Change Cube’ is about learning being owned by the employees instead of by the L&D team,” Woods emphasizes. “Of course, we relied heavily on getAbstract for content.”

The structural changes at E.ON affected every part of the business. getAbstract worked closely with leaders in almost every department – from HR and L&D to Marketing and Sales – to cater to each teams’ specific needs.

To enhance every employee’s learning experience, E.ON wanted its learning resources and providers to work together. getAbstract has supported this effort by collaborating with other providers, giving them access to its portal and summaries and organizing webinars to discuss new ways to link content and improve learning experiences.

When talking about getAbstract, Woods has one recommendation for other companies: “Take a look at what you are already doing and embed getAbstract into that rather than using it as a separate add-on. And, of course, get as many people on board as you can – from the very beginning.”

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