IBM Helps McDonald's Serve Up Social Collaboration To Transform Workforce

Thu Jan 31, 2013 3:30pm EST

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Global Food Service Retailer Embraces the Social, Mobile and Cloud to Drive
JOHANNESBURG,  Jan. 31, 2013  /PRNewswire/ -- IBM (NYSE:  IBM) today announced
that McDonald's (NYSE: MCD)  South Africa, part of the global leading global
food service retailer, is using IBM  social business software  to embrace the
convergence of social, mobile and cloud facilitating its expansion to new
markets and enabling its employees to collaborate more effectively.

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McDonald's is working with IBM and its Business Partner, Knowledge Dimension, to
transform the way its almost 200 restaurants and 8000 employees communicate and
collaborate, thereby helping the company communicate and operate more
effectively. McDonald's will begin transforming into a social enterprise to help
geographically dispersed employees to communicate more effectively, sharing
ideas that will allow them to deliver exceptional customer service.

Established in  South Africa  in  November 1995, this market is considered one
of the most successful markets for McDonald's international and initially opened
30 restaurants in just 23 months. The company has trained and employed almost
8000 South Africans at various levels, including franchisees, restaurant
managers and crew.  

"With our intended aggressive expansion plans - growing the number of
restaurants by approximately 25 restaurants a year - improved communications is
undoubtedly a business imperative," says  Greg Solomon, Managing Director for
McDonald's  South Africa. "Equipping our employees with a social network to
improve communication is critical in helping us fulfill our  brand promise  to
customers for quality, service, cleanliness, and value."  

Challenged by having to communicate across this vastly dispersed organisation,
the company sought a more effective way to reach every one of their crew,
driving engagement and collaboration across the system.

"The company's 'Engagement with our People' initiative kick started in 2011,
intended to implement processes and tools between head office, Owner Operators
(Franchisees), restaurant managers and crew (employees) to increase
productivity, improve decision-making and achieve measurable business results
has been hugely accelerated with this solution, giving management and staff a
new way of interacting, collaborating and sharing information and expertise,"
says Gary Swale, Director, Business Development, Knowledge Dimension.

McDonald's SA is currently using IBM Connections and IBM Sametime instant
messaging software to support internal communication and training requirements
across their branch network.  

The McDonald's crew (staff at restaurant level) will access the platform via an
innovative, first-to-market in  South Africa, mobile solution, supplemented by
in-restaurant touch screen docking stations. This phase is scheduled for
completion in the first quarter of 2013.  

"McDonald's decision to embrace social business is pioneering and is reflective
of the need to find smarter ways of working," says  Alistair Rennie, general
manager, social business, IBM. "McDonald's is taking a purposeful approach,
using social technologies to engage employees, empower customers and drive
organizational performance to secure a competitive advantage."  

The agreement with McDonald's was signed in late 2012.

Dana Anastasi

SOURCE  IBM Corporation

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