News

Launch of embedADAPT’s refreshed interface!

In April 2014 we launched the first version of our cloud-based technology, embedADAPT.

Since the initial release, we have regularly added new features and made improvements based on the feedback from you guys – our customers.

On the 25th July, we will be launching our biggest update yet, a refreshed version of our user interface.

So, what does that mean?

When you log on you’ll see a much cleaner, consistent design and navigation aligned to the ADAPT method.

The biggest of these change is the addition of three tabs on a side navigation bar which gives you a Personal (I), Teams (WE) and Organisation (IT) view. These tabs now all include a dashboard.

The personal tab displays a dashboard with your personal information including your tasks, peer catch ups and career valuation score.

The team tab shows you all the teams you are a member of and allows you to navigate to each team dashboard to access team guidance, tasks and network health.

The organisation tab displays a dashboard with organisational information including guidance around purpose and values, and analysis of network health, career valuations and cultural index. You can also navigate to pages for each Value Stream and Succession within the organisation.

We’ve also added an ADAPT method tab where you can access all resources related to the ADAPT method including the ADAPT capabilities.

 

Help!    

When you first log in, you will have access to a tour which will go through each element in embedADAPT.

We have also implemented a chat feature, so if you have any questions, you can send a support request through this window.

At ADAPT we are committed to building long-term relationships with our customers by providing a great product and proactive, personal and helpful support that exceeds expectations.

Please contact our support team for assistance or if you have any ideas on how we could improve.

Blog: ADAPT Concepts

Recruiting for values and cultural fit

The environment businesses operate in today has never been more dynamic. There is a growing societal demand for businesses to be more conscious and to reflect more sustainable attitudes.

Why then, do many recruiting ads and agencies emphasise qualifications and experience, when businesses are interested in a candidate’s capability and their ‘cultural fit’ with the organisation?  We believe that this is because it takes more time and conscious effort to determine these attributes, and that is at odds with the world that insists solutions must be fast and simple.

Recruiting is one of the most important tasks any organisation routinely engages in.  I doubt many employers would argue that who a business invites into their organisation has a massive impact on their culture and productivity.

When we say ‘values and culture’, we mean those values and behaviours that best describe how a company interacts with their stakeholders, both internal (employees and partners) and external (customers, suppliers and the community in which it operates). A company’s culture is often implied and tends to evolve over time.

The problem with a focus on recruiting for qualifications and experience is that this approach is transactional.  It might be efficient, but there are fundamental problems with the effectiveness of this strategy. The evidence for this is overwhelming. Almost all businesses can attest to having recruited experienced and ‘suitably’ qualified individuals, only to have them exit a short time later because they didn’t fit the company culture.

A transactional recruiting approach assumes that business is a static entity with narrowly defined requirements. The logic seems to be that by simply filling the vacant position, the business needs will be solved.  The fact is, all businesses are comprised of human beings, and it is these human characteristics – our capacity for connection, ingenuity, passion, diligence and purpose – that creates a successful business.

What if there is an alternative? Recruiting the way professional sporting teams do, adopting a more systematic approach. Many highly successful sporting teams start by accepting that the overall performance of the team depends on how all the parts fit; not how the parts perform separately.  The focus is on an individual’s potential to grow, perform and contribute to your teams.

Because team and cultural behaviours are so important in today’s workplace, matching candidates that align with your company’s values and purpose is key. It demands the business consider sustainability and focus on the recruit who is likely to be a better fit for your organisation now, and in the future.

Recruiting for values and cultural fit also includes important reciprocal aspects. As much as the candidate is expected to sell themselves to an organisation, the organisation is also selling themselves to the candidate.  In a globally competitive marketplace, where motivated employees are looking for a career, they want to know that your organisation can deliver by matching their aspirations with your own.

So, what’s the catch? Actually, there isn’t one.  However, this approach does require a good deal more conscious thought, planning and effort.

How do businesses select candidates based on cultural fit?

Before assessing a candidate, it’s a good idea to invest the time to create a detailed task map of your recruitment process, as it:

  • Enables better estimates of the time and resources
  • Allows you to communicate the process to all those involved, including the candidates
  • Ensures role clarity and accountability
  • Ensures commitment by decision makers
  • Improves your ability to treat candidates with fairness, respect and professionalism

Recruiting for values and cultural fit involves both process and technique. In terms of process, this is divided into several stages. As a minimum we suggest that the candidates are interviewed separately for their capability (competence and capacity) as well as their cultural fit factors (values, philosophy and alignment).  If the role is crucial for the business, we also suggest employers consider conducting an additional role-play scenario, so that the candidate is assessed in a simulated team environment.

It should be emphasised that capability is subordinate to cultural fit.  It’s not that capability isn’t important. Determining a candidate’s capability is a fundamental step in the screening process, but the overall hiring decision should be based on the capable candidate who is assessed as having the best alignment with your company’s culture.

What happens in situations where candidates successfully ‘game’ the interview process?  It is possible for a candidate to give a convincing ‘performance’ during the interview stages, but it is much less likely that they will be able to sustain a performance in the long term. A mutual assessment period is a useful discretionary tool. Employers should only be prepared to offer permanent employment if they are convinced that the candidate is a good fit for their organisation. Employees also have the time to decide if the organisation is a good fit for them.

What factors should be evaluated when assessing cultural fit?

Determining cultural fit factors is about technique. Most organisations can describe the values and behaviours which are important to them and that they rate highly.  This is less dependent on role specifics and more on a candidate’s alignment with your organisations purpose and philosophies. Explicitly stating these will help guide the recruiting process and assist you to formulate useful interview questions and selection criteria.

Our Tips

  • Make use of your organisation’s purpose and guiding philosophy
    • Help the candidates understand why you do what you do
    • Promote your point of difference
  • Make use of your values
    • State what the values mean to your organisation
    • Give examples of how you use them in your business
    • Use them as a reference for interview questions
    • Create interest and curiosity around your values
    • Ensure your values aren’t confused with business objectives
  • Use a Career Valuation Tool to establish what’s critically important to the candidate and what their intrinsic motivations are.

If you would like to know more about how we can assist your business in finding well aligned candidates using our method and unique measurement tools, then please get in touch.

News

ADAPT by Design is moving!

We are excited to announce that ADAPT by Design is moving to a new home in Subiaco.

Please update your records with our new address effective from the 15th June 2017.

4/448 Roberts Road
Subiaco WA 6008
Google Map

PO Box 525
Subiaco WA 6904

info@adaptbydesign.com.au

Our new office phone number will take a little longer to sort out, so in the meantime, please call us on our mobiles, or send us an email.

There is plenty of two-hour parking behind the office on Metters Lane, as well as a Wilson parking space on Roberts Road between our office and the Subiaco train station. If you catch the train to Subiaco, the walk is less than five minutes.

We look forward to seeing you in our new space!

Case Studies

Changing commuting habits for good

acQuire believe they have a social responsibility to improve the lives and health of their employees and the health of the planet.

Because of this, acQuire offers all employees a daily commuter allowance for each day they don’t drive to work. Popular ways of getting to work include running, walking, cycling, utilising public transport, or carpooling.

acQuire uses the ADAPT by Design method to engage and align their people. ADAPT helps businesses to grow in a way that is both sustainable and faithful to their purpose and values. They help embed lasting change using a data-driven, step-by-step approach.

ADAPT believes that all areas of a business are interdependent and have identified eight areas of focus called Successions. These include Leadership, People, Culture, Stakeholders, Architecture, Product, Financial Security and Ownership.

The commuter allowance is an initiative under the Succession of People. The Succession of People aims to create teams of people who are highly capable, energetic and values aligned. It provides opportunities to instil happiness in the workplace and culture.

Originally brought in to solve the challenges around limited parking bays, the commuter allowance has resulted in numerous benefits to acQuire. Employees enjoy healthier commuting habits and feel engaged in the community and with the environment. Staff save money, are more active, healthy and less stressed, as well as doing their bit to reduce traffic congestion, air pollution and harmful carbon emissions.

It is a trust-based system where employees record how they travel to work each day using a calendar on the company intranet. Employees receive $7 per day if they don’t drive to the office. Each month, the number of days are added up and this amount is added to the employee’s monthly salary.

Some employees opt to donate their monthly commuter allowance to charities supported by acQuire.

Employees share their stories

acQuire’s dedicated staff see the commuter allowance as a differentiator that sets the company apart, making them proud to work at acQuire and think about the greater impacts of their commuting choices. The allowance is an important element of the workplace.

Sebastien Merlet, a geoscientific data analyst at acQuire, said the option of the commuter allowance made the company more attractive as an employer.

“I decided to join acQuire for various reasons – the company’s great culture being one of them. The commuter allowance was an example I gave to my friends and family as proof of the good culture.”

“As soon as I started to look for an apartment in Perth after joining the company, I took the commuter allowance into account by looking at how close public transport was: I was very enthusiastic about it.”

Sebastien said the allowance still has a positive effect on the way he feels and on the time it takes to get to work and back.

“Filling out the commuter allowance app every month makes me feel good. Beyond the financial incentive, there’s always this hint of pleasure to see the green days on the commuter calendar and the beneficial contribution to the environment. Almost five years later, I still feel good about filling out the calendar.”

“My commute consists of going from home to the train station, taking the train for about 20 minutes, then going from the train station to acQuire’s office in Applecross.”

“I tried various ways to make the trip as quick as possible and ended up choosing a kick scooter to go from home to the train station, and from the train station to the office. By doing this, I get to work in about 35 minutes, where using my car can take 45 minutes to one hour in the morning traffic.”

Marianne Broadgate, a researcher at acQuire, spends more time with her daughter because of the commuter allowance.

“I feel the company actively caring and wanting me to drive less, is more powerful than the actual payment. I find it’s too easy to take the car here in Australia and so the commuter allowance does tilt me over to cycle on days when I may otherwise just take the car. It means I have set my life up to cycle rather than drive. Not only does that mean that I cycle, but so does my daughter as I drop her off at school on the way.”

Marianne appreciates the incentive and sees it as a tipping factor to make her behaviour more environmentally friendly and community focused.

“It changes mindsets and behaviours fundamental to engendering systematic and societal changes that are hugely beneficial to people, community and the environment. It also helps employees feel nurtured by their company which breeds engagement and loyalty.”

Meesha Stacker, a marketing executive at acQuire, also saw the allowance as an attractor in terms of choosing a new employer.

“When I applied for a position at acQuire, the commuter allowance was an attractive initiative that stood out at the company (one of many). Even though it’s a nominal daily amount, it adds up throughout the year as extra money and you feel good about it.”

Meesha said the effect doesn’t wear off and it still influences her daily commuting decisions.

“After nearly four years with the company I do still travel to work more by car, however when I can, I will take public transport or ride my bike. Having the commuter allowance there certainly makes me think about and try to use alternative transport means more than if the initiative wasn’t in place.”

acQuire’s commuter allowance is not just available to employees based in the Australian offices. It is a global company initiative. acQuire has seven offices around the globe and all employees can access the allowance. It reflects acQuire’s approach to sustaining a one company model.

About acQuire

acQuire Technology Solutions is an employee-owned company originating in Perth, Western Australia.

In 1996, acQuire launched Geoscientific Information Management (GIM) software solutions for the natural resources industries, focusing on exploration, resource development and mining assets.

Due to an ongoing commitment to excellence, acQuire reinvests 20-25% of their annual revenue into research and development. The company currently employs over 100 staff working in seven offices around the globe, with support centres operating in each major time zone. More than 450 sites benefit from acQuire GIM solutions.

Two Western Australian Industry and Export Awards in Digital Technologies and the C.Y. O’Connor Award for Excellence in Engineering and Technology were awarded to acQuire in 2016 for global technology and engineering innovation.

Release Notes

Enhancing your team effectiveness

Our cloud-based technology enables everyone in your organisation to come on the ADAPT journey and provides the framework and tools to embed lasting change. This release focuses on improving the effectiveness of teams.

Team Dashboard

You can now establish teams within your organisation. Each team has its own dashboard. The dashboard is accessible from the value streams or successions that they are accountable for. The dashboard gives you an overview of who is in the team, its purpose and values, the quality of relationships in the team and the current work being done.

Team Guidance

A shared purpose and values align the focus and direction of the team and answer the question of WHY this team exists. You can now capture these for each team, building on the purpose and values of the organisation.

Team Stewardship

Managing team work effectively increases accountability and collaboration.

Each team has its own Kanban board (or multiple if you wish), and works similarly to the previous meeting groups, with an improved layout and filtering capabilities.

Team Meetings

Teams may now elect whether or not to utilise the meetings functionality, with the ability to capture notes and decisions within each meeting.

If enabled, the dashboard will give you quick access to the next meeting and the minutes from the previous meeting.

Speed Catch Up

Team members can use the speed catch up functionality to improve their ability to communicate their level of engagement and give and receive feedback on contributions.

This helps enhance working relationships in the team and ensure everyone is working towards the shared purpose.

Network Health

Our new interactive analysis tool allows you to interrogate the quality of relationships in your network based on speed catch up data.

This is available at the team level, as well as on your personal speed catch up dashboard. Total Systems Leaders can also utilise this at an organisational level.

We hope you enjoy the new team functionality in the ADAPT platform.
If you have any questions or concerns, please give us a call, or email Support on helpme@adaptbydesign.com.au.

Blog: ADAPT Concepts

Why role clarity is key in any organisation

Employee retention is a persistent issue for all businesses, and according to the results of the latest Pulse Survey of the Australian Human Resources Institute the average level of staff turnover was around 16%.

For many, this rate is considered too high, with more than two-thirds of the respondents believing that turnover of 10% or less would be ideal. The survey also indicated that almost 60% believed turnover in their workplace had a negative impact on workplace productivity.

What is interesting, is that more than half of this turnover came from younger workers (35 years of age or less) and was highest among those occupying entry level, graduate or junior roles. Although you might reasonably expect younger employees to exhibit higher turnover, the results from the AHRI survey show that younger employees are leaving their employers at a rate that is at least 2.5 times greater, compared to all other positions and ages.

These results indicate that there is a lot of unproductive recruiting, especially among entry-level jobs. If that is the case, what can employers do to reduce turnover? One solution is greater role clarity.

In an article published in 2012 by the Harvard Business Review, author Tammy Erikson argues that without clear role descriptions employees are more likely to waste their energies negotiating their roles within their teams rather than focusing on their productive tasks. To paraphrase the article, without role clarity, employees often get involved in unnecessary politics and turf wars.

More importantly, the research also suggested that collaboration improved when roles were clearly defined and well understood. The reasoning behind this conclusion was the finding that team behaviours improved when employees felt that their roles had clear boundaries, and that allowed them to do a significant portion of their work independently.

Renewed focus on role clarity

In an increasingly dynamic and connected global economy, new businesses are constantly being created and existing businesses are re-inventing themselves. In response, jobs and job roles have been changing at a frenetic pace. Employers are expected to meet and embrace these changes, but often without any consideration of what the new role expectations are for employees.

Many businesses also assume that their employees understand how their roles directly affect the success of the company. What then, is the likely outcome if those roles are not well defined (or at all) and the responsibilities and accountabilities are unclear?

The benefits of role descriptions

The advantages of adopting a systematic way to create and sustain role descriptions go well beyond simply reducing role confusion and improving collaboration.

Specific role descriptions can be very useful when used in the following ways:

Recruiting and attracting talent
  • Ensures that the position is well defined and understood, first by the business and then by the potential recruit.
  • Assists the recruiting process by helping to frame interview questions and conversations with role candidates.
  • Explains how the recruit can contribute to the organisation and vice versa.
  • Demonstrates that the business is structured and well organised.
Handovers, induction & training
  • Promotes alignment with, and provides context for the company’s culture, values and purpose.
  • Provides a valuable reference for handovers and assists an incumbent to introduce the new role recipient to the breadth and depth of all their role tasks.
  • Introduces development and training required for performing the role tasks.
  • Creates objectives to assess the performance of new recruits within a probationary period.
Engagement
  • Provides clear role responsibility and accountability.
  • Reduces confusion by eliminating unintentional job overlap.
  • Defines how the role fits within the business and how it intersects with other roles, workflows and teams.
  • Explains how the employee can help the business execute their product or service offering.
  • Improves collaborative behaviours by providing a secure framework for employees to work independently and creatively.
Performance management
  • Defines what the expected performance in the role should look like.
  • Establishes an objective basis for measuring and managing performance.
  • Provides a useful reference for counselling employee disputes and discipline issues.
Innovation and knowledge management
  • Provides a contextual framework that will assist employees seeking guidance.
  • Facilitates the sharing of stories about why a company does the things it does, in the way that they do them.
  • Promotes the capture of ideas on how to improve current processes so they are more effective in the future.
Career development
  • Supports the idea that the role is part of a career, rather than a simple placeholder for a job.
  • Provides a factual basis for managing career progression and succession planning.
  • Helps establish the networks available to the employee for advice and mentoring.

Creating & sustaining role descriptions

How a business creates, manages and maintains their role descriptions is a significant issue. When they exist, most role descriptions are stored as static documents, either in hard copy or Word documents. When the role and role tasks change, and they often do, how then does a business capture these changes to reflect the new role descriptions without the time and effort spent in locating and updating these documents?

The answer to this problem lies with technology and being able to link role descriptions to task maps instead of linking them to individuals. By consciously separating “roles from souls”, a business can use task maps to show where capabilities are lacking or duplicated for employees, for teams and for the organisation.

The benefit of using task maps for this purpose is that they also provide a visual representation of your business processes and workflows. Given that business processes tend to change more often than employees, it makes logical sense to innovate around workflow rather than attempt to react to every change that impacts an employee’s role.

ADAPT by Design has created a cloud-based task mapping system that links directly to a role description. Whenever any task map is updated, all the role descriptions associated with those tasks are updated dynamically. An employee can have multiple roles, which will show all their tasks on their personal profile giving them clarity of their position within the company.

If you would like to know how to create and dynamically sustain effective role descriptions matched to your business requirements, please get in touch.

References
  1. Australian Human Resources Institute, October 2015; AHRI Pulse Survey – Turnover and Retention (19 pages).
  2. Harvard Business Review, April 5, 2012; The Biggest Mistake You (Probably) Make with Teams, by Tammy Erikson.

News

ADAPT for Teams

ADAPT by Design exists to help leaders build resilient organisations. Together with guidance from our ADAPT Practitioners, our cloud-based technology provides tools across all areas of your business to help do this.

But what if we could help more people by also having a solution for teams?

Building on Patrick Lencioni’s work in teams and Conscious Leadership principles, along with our own experience in the building of a software technology company and working with our ADAPT customers, we have developed the ADAPT Team model. The model looks to align everyone to deliver the best outcomes by enabling team members to:

  • Be a learner and embrace innovation
  • Build trust and alignment
  • Engage in healthy conflict
  • Commit to team decisions
  • Be accountable

To support this model we will soon be launching a new product called ADAPT for Teams. Team leaders and consultants will be able to use ADAPT for Teams to:

  • Assess their teams’ current behaviours
  • Guide their team with purpose and shared values
  • Engage their team in building better relationships
  • Enable their team with Kanban task management

So what does this mean for you?

As existing customers, you have access to the ADAPT platform which includes all functionality from ADAPT for Teams. What this will mean for you is:

  • Improved user interface and user experience
  • Functionality for building team effectiveness within your organisation

This team effectiveness functionality is on its way shortly. Stay tuned for more updates.

Release Notes

Export to Asana and Trello

Our cloud-based technology, embedADAPT, enables everyone in your organisation to come on the ADAPT journey. It helps embed lasting change in your business using a data driven, step-by-step approach.

Connect How and Do

If you use Trello or Asana, this latest update now integrates with these task management systems.

You can take the design of HOW you work and make it real by creating and allocating tasks to your team with full access back to the guidance.

Guidance on using this feature is available in embedADAPT. Simply click on the Export Task Map button and select from the list.

We hope you enjoy the new task map export functionality.
If you have any questions or concerns, please give us a call, or email Support on helpme@adaptbydesign.com.au.

Release Notes

Stewardship Enhancement

Our cloud based technology, ADAPT, enables everyone in your organisation to come on the ADAPT journey and provides the framework and tools to implement each capability. Based on feedback on our Stewardship feature, we have made several changes to improve the experience for our customers.

Adding Kanban Items

The first change is adding an item directly to the Kanban. You no longer need to be in a meeting to do this.

Click on Add Item from the Kanban board and add an item.

Kanban boards are now also shown when you are in a meeting.

Item Location

The next change is allowing the item location to be set by tier 1 architecture, by capability or by the ADAPT Succession maps.

You can choose your preferred location method, and then select or update your item location.

Searching

You can now search for an item. This is currently a simple search which we will enhance in a future release.

You simply type in the text you are searching for and the feature will search for items across all boards, or more specific areas if the location or meeting group is specified.

You can then click on the Item Link for an item to view its details.

Moving Items

To make moving an item to another board easier, you can now do this in embedADAPT via the Links tab.

Simply click on the edit icon and change the meeting group from the drop down list.

Due Dates

Our next enhancement is Due dates which now appear as part of the item summary on the Kanban board. This gives a better visual of item priorities.

If no due date is specified, it will be left blank.

My Stewardship

And last but not least you can now navigate to your My Stewardship page from Stewardship (and vice-versa).

We hope you enjoy the enhancements to the Stewardship area of embedADAPT.
If you have any questions or concerns, please give us a call, or email Support on helpme@adaptbydesign.com.au.

News

ADAPT by Design certified as the fourth B Corporation in Western Australia

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Thursday, 24 November 2016. Perth-based technology company ADAPT by Design today announced that it has officially become a Certified B Corporation.

B Corps are certified by the non-profit B Lab to meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency. They represent an emerging group of companies that are using the power of business to create a positive impact on the world and generate a shared and sustainable prosperity for all.

Unlike traditional corporations, Certified B Corporations are legally required to consider the impact of their decisions on their employees, suppliers, community, consumers, and environment.

‘We became a B Corp because it is so closely aligned with ADAPT’s purpose and guiding philosophy, to help leaders build sustainable companies while always considering the impact on our stakeholders’ said Renae Flegg, Stakeholder Leader at ADAPT by Design. ‘We are excited to be part of this community of purpose and values-driven organisations and look forward to helping grow the movement in Western Australia’.

As of November 2016, there are more than 1,900 Certified B Corporations from 130 industries, across 50 countries.

Alicia Darvall, Executive Director of B Lab Australia & New Zealand, says “We’d love to welcome ADAPT by Design to the B Corp movement. It is fantastic to see Western Australia represented by technology companies keen to redefine success in business. We look forward to working together to further build awareness of using business as a force for good across Western Australia.”

About ADAPT by Design

ADAPT by Design helps founders and organisation leaders to build a business they want to work in, one that is aligned to their values and purpose. They help with the process of handing over roles, knowledge, wisdom and eventually ownership so that the organisation lives on beyond them.

ADAPT Practitioners mentor and support organisations to build the capability within the business to solve challenges faced along the way. ADAPT’s method to do this is enabled by their cloud-based platform embedADAPT.

About B Corporations

Certified B Corporations meet rigorous standards of social and environmental performance, legally expand their corporate responsibilities to include consideration of stakeholder interests, and build collective voice through the power of the unifying B Corporation brand.

For more information, please contact:
Renae Flegg
Stakeholder Leader
r.flegg@adaptbydesign.com.au