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Using iREAP™ - Organisational Success Stories



Case Study 1: Canon triggers employee responsibility for engagement


Canon Australia a market leader in professional and consumer imaging solutions; embarked on a unique journey to inspire and stimulate their employees to take responsibility and ownership for their careers. As Canon is a Japanese-based company, its cultural tenets of San-ji (self-awareness, self-motivation and self-management) were regarded as absolutely critical, especially during tough economic times.


Nicole Elsley, former Learning and Organisational Development Manager, stated that Canon needed employees who took responsibility for their level and impact of engagement by:


  • Having a career conversation with their manager
  • Changing jobs through secondment, transfer or promotion
  • Actively seeking a change of career


Engagement and Career Enrichment Program


The i-Choose Program was developed and facilitated by Because Pty Ltd, specialists in employee engagement, work and life enrichment programs, to integrate the San-ji tenets into its career enrichment program.  The structure of the program included a 3 half-day training program and also a 1-1 coaching session using the iREAP™ profile (please note this was formerly called the Work Engagement Tool).


The program essentially targeted people who may have been:


  • experiencing career plateau 
  • desiring a career transition
  • ready for the next career step


The program also made a comprehensive review of their talents, capabilities, aspirations and career opportunities, and, to make a choice about whether they wanted to:


  • stay and re-engage in their current role (stay and grow)
  • explore other opportunities within Canon Australia (move)
  • exit the organisation (go)


The starting point for the program was that people did not need to leave their current role to have career development opportunities.  They could seek opportunities to be more engaged by performing their tasks more effectively and using more of their talents and creativities for more meaningful work.


Program Delivery 


Eight programs were delivered to eighty-nine participants over the period of November 2006 to April 2008 in NSW and Victoria.  The participants’ career backgrounds ranged from service technicians, sales coordinators, client services coordinators, administrators, and account managers, human resource consultants through to business analysts, financial accountants and general management.


Program Outcomes


Staff Retention

Of the 89 employees that attended the Career Enrichment program, 66 people (74%) stayed working in the organisation and 23 people or 26% chose to exit Canon.  


Out of those people who stayed:


  • 72% stayed working in the same role
  • 18% were transferred or seconded and
  • 10% were promoted


Furthermore, for those staying in Canon; since attending the program:


  • 72.5% indicated that they had changed as a person 
  • 37.5% changed career plans 
  • 50% said that things had improved


When asked to rate their level of engagement post program through a re-test of the iREAP™ profile, for those who indicated they were “more” and “much more” engaged, two key variables for those employees seemed to be:


  • proactively engaging their manager in a career development conversation
  • taking on more challenging projects


Staff Exits

The exit figure of 26% is considerably higher than the Canon’s average turnover rate of 13.90% and certainly higher than the national benchmark average of 18.5%.


Of the 26 people that chose to leave Canon (either through redundancy or resignation); the pre-testing of the work engagement tool revealed that:


  • Only 4% of those were considered highly engaged (Flying High, Turbulence and Red Alert) 
  • 60% were moderately engaged (Automatic Pilot, Seat-Belts On and Transit Lounge (high)
  • 36% reported low levels of engagement (Departure Gate, Transit Lounge (Mod) and Stormy Weather)


Key Learnings’


The implications of these statistics are that the i-Choose program seems to have been successful as Canon:


  • retained the people they wanted to keep – their highly engaged people
  • encouraged those who were not engaged and disengaged to choose work more personally fulfilling for them.


Whilst the program has been successful in returning on expectations, there are a number of key learnings’ for Canon.


  1. The critical role that the manager plays in role-modelling high engagement behaviours and being proactive in providing mentoring support through having career conversations with their people.
  2. The need for pro-active follow-up to ensure that career development action plans are implemented.


Nicole Elsley, former Manager Learning and Organisational Development, Canon Australia


This case study was published in the journal of the Australian Institute of Training and Development.  If you would like the full published version of this case study then download it here.


Case Study 2: Department of Sustainability and Environment reviews graduate engagement


The Department of Sustainability and Environment (Victoria), employs science, engineering and commercial graduates for a variety of positions across the Department. The iREAP™ profile was selected as an organisational development tool to achieve two purposes:


  1. Ensure that graduates careers are being enriched by the various placements and to provide the graduates with important insights as to what steps they can take to enrich their career.
  2. Provide feedback to the organisation on how effective the graduate program currently is and to identify areas for improvement.


An invitation to complete the iREAP™ profile was made on a voluntary basis to all 16 graduates, of which the majority participated and completed their profile.  The graduates were provided with one-to-one coaching support from the Graduate Coordinator and also had a self-interpretation guide to help them understand their report.  In terms of the engagement risk and opportunity matrix it was found that the graduates were reasonably dispersed with 35% experiencing high levels of engagement and the remaining 65% experiencing moderate levels of engagement.  The matrix also revealed that almost 60% would benefit from enhancing the motivational alignment in their placements, with a further 14% ready for an immediate career move.


With the graduates’ informed consent Manager Feedback reports were also provided to the Graduate Coordinator.  The purpose of these reports is to provide key information to managers or organisational decision-makers on career readiness for change and motivational alignment. The report also highlighted which specific factors were enabling or limiting the engagement of the Graduates.  Access to the Manager Feedback reports enabled the Graduate Coordinator to understand information that would otherwise have been confidential information. As a result, the Graduate Coordinator was able to implement specific actions to address the Graduates needs.


In summary DSE has effectively utilised the iREAP tool to enable our DSE graduates and their managers to track how the graduates are travelling in their graduate program.  It has also provided valuable insights into how the graduates view their position within the organisation.  The iREAP tool provided insightful coaching interventions and action plans to ensure our graduates staff remain engaged and productive staff members.


Garry Stock, Team Leader, Talent and Diversity, Department of Sustainability and Environment


Case Study 3: Moreland City Council encourages staff to take responsibility for their engagement and careers


Moreland City Council is a Melbourne metropolitan based city council committed to creating and sustaining a high performance culture.  As with many organisations, managers in Moreland City Council work with a diverse range of employees, some who are highly engaged in their work, others who are less engaged and some who are disengaged.  In seeking to help employees and managers discuss engagement, the iREAP™ profile was seen as presenting a great opportunity and framework for initiating conversations about engagement. A pilot program was designed that would focus on and build engagement in select areas of the organisation, complementing existing tools and processes used by managers and employees.


The pilot program included a pre-workshop briefing session for participants, completion of the iREAP™ profile by participants and delivery of two half-day workshops as well as follow up coaching sessions.  The first workshop, for employees, emphasised the importance of taking personal responsibility engagement.  This was achieved by:


  • Helping employees to understand how engagement levels can change through an engagement life cycle
  • Preparing employees to have a conversation with their manager about their current engagement and alignment in their role


In addition, each employee also had a confidential one-to-one coaching debrief session with a program facilitator.

The second workshop was for the employees’ managers, helping them to understand the iREAP profile and how it was to be used to prepare for a career and engagement conversation with their employees. 


The pilot program achieved two outcomes: 


  1. Helped individuals to understand that they do have choices when it comes to their engagement levels and that it is their individual responsibility to manage their own engagement.
  2. Created a springboard, language and framework for a different type of conversation to emerge with managers, a higher quality conversation focused on engagement, contribution and career.  It opened the possibility for conversations about issues that were typically not addressed in the periodic performance review and development conversations.


It was noted that the willingness for these conversation to take place, as well as the quality and effectiveness of the conversations, were influenced by two primary factors:


  1. The manager’s situation.  The manager’s underlying coaching capabilities, their own engagement level and level of interest in the development of their staff.  Manager’s who were themselves disengaged found it more difficult to inspire and motivate their team members.
  2. The timing of the conversation.  Conversations that occurred within two weeks of the training course helped to maintain commitment and momentum to actions that could change engagement.


Anita Craven, Manager, Council Planning & Performance, Moreland City Council


Case Study 4: Federal Government Public Service Department keeping staff engaged through a restructure


A team in a federal government department is requiring staff who have been on temporary performance allowance for up to 2 years to re-apply for their positions. Essentially all roles within the team are to be re-advertised at a future date with current incumbents encouraged to apply.


An Assistant Director thought the iREAP™ instrument would provide an excellent development opportunity for all of her team to consider their perceived congruence with the roles that they were temporarily performing.  It was felt that the information provided on which work aspects were most fulfilling and dissatisfying would enable staff to make an informed choice on whether to apply for these roles or seek other opportunities.


The iREAP™ profile was made available to staff on a voluntary basis and the Assistant Director plans to have individual 1-1 career coaching conversations with each person to discuss job-fit and help them identify and agree on the best career option for them.  For those that realise the job is not right for them it will save them time and energy in applying for these roles.  For those that realise the job is right for them it will motivate and reaffirm that they are in the right role at the right time.


Name withheld, Training Team, Federal Government Public Service Department


Case Study 5: Stowe Australia develops more sophisticated performance review and development planning process


Stowe Australia is Australia’s leading privately owned electrical and communications installations and services contracting company.  David Clulow, a Melbourne based Human Resource consultant supported Ian McKenzie, Victorian Construction Manager, to introduce a more structured approach to Stowe’s annual appraisal process for staff.


Whilst there was a performance management process in place, Stowe Australia wanted to make the process more meaningful, structured and professional.  Their goal was to make the immediate line managers more accountable for the performance and career development of their staff.  Ian McKenzie formerly had undertaken the bulk of performance reviews of project managers, foreman and administrative staff and wanted to encourage his direct reports to get more involved in this management task.


David introduced Ian to the iREAP™ profiling tool as a way of creating a more informative and structured approach to development and encouraging staff to take more responsibility for their career development.  The iREAP™ Summary Report was provided to 24 employees on a confidential and voluntary basis.  In addition Management Feedback Reports (which summarised the engagement profile and motivation results and outlined key coaching focus areas for each staff member) were provided to both Ian and David. 


David conducted 1-1 sessions with each staff member and worked through the iREAP™ profile results and broad development ideas.  Ian intends on using the management feedback reports to speak to the project managers about their appraisal and development and also to discuss what actions are suggested to develop their direct reports (foreman). These development recommendations are to be integrated into the annual training and development plan for the business.  David will also have input based on his 1:1 discussions and provide an  independent view of possible development needs.


Whilst David had worked as a consultant for Stowe for some time he found the process of using the iREAP™ profiling tool enabled much deeper and meaningful conversations to take place; in turn improving the quality of his relationship with managers.  It enabled staff to create a clear career and development action plan and encouraged some staff to take on additional responsibilities for greater stretch and challenge.


Conversations using the iREAP™ reports also surfaced issues which would not otherwise have been revealed in a standard performance review conversation.  Finally the iREAP™ profiling tool helped staff to realise that the performance planning and career development process is a key part of an investment in their future as well as the future growth of the business.  This awareness is in itself motivating to staff.


Ian McKenzie, Victorian Construction Manager, Stowe Electrical

David Clulow, Consultant


Want to find out more about how iREAP™ can increase employee engagement in your organisation?

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