All-Hands on (virtual) deck

A day in the life of... Order Management & Integration

Call To US — Jun 2020 by Susana Aleixo

It is true that we feel pretty comfortable having meetings through video. But hosting fully remote All-hands events is on a whole different level and it still requires adjustments.

Team dynamics are different when working remotely and activities that reinforce the bonds between team members must exist in a new way.  

In May, I was invited to attend the first Order Management & Integration virtual all-hands event and I found it very interesting to see how well they adapted, as well as the effort that was put in to maintaining the meeting structure. The tone was lighter. And I was pleased to see strong engagement and very positive vibes during the session, even during these challenging times.

The event

Zoom was the communications platform used to host the event and they were able to offer an informative and interactive experience.

They started with some chit chat moments where attendees talked about whatever they wanted, like virtual yoga or Pilates sessions. The first moments of small talk set the tone for a relaxed environment and contributed to making positive connections.

The event was divided into three main sections, starting with Marco Ungari sharing an update on the OM&I delivery and offers (what they are working on, what they want to achieve in the short-term and opportunities in pipeline), then Maria Inês Rosendo talked about People initiatives, and to close the event, Mariana Domingues and Miguel Pacheco led a fun activity called “More about you”.

Kick-off and business updates

Marco start by revisiting the three pillars of the BU – Offer | Delivery & Pipeline | People.

Offers are, quoting Marco, “solutions built to solve Client’ specific problems”. And that is where lies the power of their value proposition. Core offers are more mature solutions, present in several projects and “long-term” Clients, such as Vodafone Portugal and Safaricom. And more recent offers, like OSS& Automation, on projects like NOC CIAS.

Delivery & Pipeline are the projects they are working on, and future opportunities for 2020. AWS Migration, on Vodafone Ireland, is one of the projects in pipeline for Q3 2020. In the Middle East, challenging Clients like Jawwy opened the door to other important clients - STC in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait.

From people to people

In the “People” element, Maria Inês – OM& I people business partner - first shared some numbers about the unit: headcount of 117 people; 14 onboarded in 2020; 70% located in Lisbon and 30% in Oporto.

It is also important to think of initiatives that promote team growth and individual development, Maria said. For such, Maria shared two of the initiatives planned:

  • Technical training (initiative across the whole company), that gives everyone the chance to create a training path adjusted to individual motivations and project needs;
  • OM& I sessions between peers to share experiences.

Finally, Maria introduced a “new” team called PeopleOps Team that will be focused on identifying future development needs and defining next steps for empowering OM& I talents.

More about you - the socialization factor

For the team building  activity, everyone was asked to choose two objects that holds meaning for them.

Maria set the pace and “brought” a kitsch style golden microphone with funny voice features. A friend gave her the mic as a gift after she spent hours talking with echo effects! Maria also shared that she loves comedy shows as a way to disconnect and have fun, that is why her second object were two of her favorite comedy shows on DVD. Of course, Maria told us the story with the mic on.

Car battery chargers, cold beer, photo cameras and headphones were some of the objects shared. A cute black Schnauzer also appeared in our screens, one Márcio Freitas’s choices. Marco Ungari started to learn how to play the guitar in January after a Christmas dinner in Italy, so his first object was a guitar (because there’s life beyond Netflix and HBO, he said). One of Miguel Pacheco’s meaningful objects was a CD of Chopin played by the pianist Maria João Pires, which symbolizes not only his old passion for piano but for music in general, and also his “obsession” for top quality sound equipment.
This fun moment was a creative way to keep people engaged and the activity worked pretty well in fully remote version – we certainly wouldn’t have seen people’s pets or car battery chargers on a hotel roof top or at the company’s auditorium!

Bottom line

The concept of “business as usual” has changed for most organisations. And it is a great time to learn to hold better virtual meetings, which will ultimately strengthen organisations in the long-term and prepare it for the future.