Case Study

LinkedIn increases engineering workshop attendance by 6X and improves employee NPS by 22 points with PlusPlus.

60

>50%

40%

60 administrative hours saved each month by automating manual, repetitive tasks

Over 50% ‘time-to-find’ reduction for engineering teams looking for in-demand training courses and documentation

Opt-in engagement is 40% vs. the industry standard of <5% (month over month)

60

60 administrative hours saved each month by automating manual, repetitive tasks

>50%

Over 50% ‘time-to-find’ reduction for engineering teams looking for in-demand training courses and documentation

40%

Opt-in engagement is 40% vs. the industry standard of <5% (month over month)

What were the key challenges?

Sandi Friend is a Sr. Instructional Engineer at LinkedIn charged with ensuring that the company’s engineers have access to the learning they need to stay relevant and grow. LinkedIn possesses a strong collaborative culture, which fosters a legacy of high-performers. The company’s performance reviews ask whether employees have given back to their companies and contributed to the learning environment. Still, there arrived a moment in the company’s operations when it became necessary to ensure that their 6,000 engineers were better able to share the knowledge stuck in their heads and more effectively learn from one another.

 

Ensuring people know and show up

As LinkedIn’s engineering team grew into the thousands, however, the program failed to scale. The lone engineer who had been managing the program was moving on, and attendance and ratings were dropping. This program had become too inflexible and static for the size and the learning needs of the technical team. Additionally, the quality of the presentations was an issue, as many engineers proved less talented at presenting their knowledge than they were in executing their prescribed responsibilities. Sandi explained, “the program was struggling to work for everybody, and we were getting lower and lower attendance. Our workshops had fixed times,” she explains, “which wasn’t working for people’s schedules. 73% of our engineers said that the scheduled times didn’t fit their schedule, while 68% weren’t even aware of what was available to them. People also had to subscribe to a newsletter to find out about the next workshop, and we had no means of managing attendance or gathering input.

PlusPlus was key to the successful redesign that increased engineering workshop attendance by 6X to make learning at scale possible.

What approach worked?

Friction is the enemy

LinkedIn discovered that small yet necessary tweaks can have a large impact, eliminating friction and increasing participation. They needed one platform to manage it all and create a place for their people to find the workshops, sign up, attend and rate them. In partnership with PlusPlus, Sandi and her team made several effective changes to the structure of the program which included:

  • Creating no-hassle scheduling. Workshop dates and times were automatically coordinated to make them more convenient for staff around the world to attend.
  • Automating notifications & reminders. All engineers were automatically notified via email/Slack of upcoming presentations. This had an immediate positive impact on attendance.
  • Creating a single source of truth. Categorizing presentations in one central place alllowed engineers to more easily discover the learning opportunities most relevant to their specific circumstances. This also reduced expensive ‘shoulder taps’ which wasted other peoples’ time.
  • Offering live workshops with SMEs. This served as a important podium for recruiting senior staff and directors to transfer in-demand knowledge through live presentations. These “marque names” attracted a larger audience and set the the norm for improved presentation quality.
  • Setting up 1:1 coaching & mentorship. This helped communicate effective presentation strategies and offered feedback where their presenter shared what succeeded and failed.
What were the results?

Spending more time on strategic work

The overhaul of the program drove meaningful success. The team implemented PlusPlus to automate away the manual legwork, while improving advertising and feedback fronts. “We wanted to make sure that everything was very discoverable,” said Sandi. “And we wanted to make sure that things were easy for ambassadors and advisers to create. They can add their knowledge sharing to the system themselves.”

One of the great benefits to PlusPlus was that it didn’t need to be micromanaged. PlusPlus enabled scalability through automation, in the process eliminating bottlenecks, which in turn allowed Sandi and her team to concentrate on training the trainers, curating for quality, and creating new learning formats — all without needing add more administrative headcount.

Growing headcount?

Learn from what’ve built for leading companies. Faster onboarding, team alignment, and impactful engagement.

Growing headcount?

Learn from what’ve built for leading companies. Faster onboarding, team alignment, and impactful engagement.

Why Eng Leaders need Tech Enablement

“For a long time there was a culture of everyone doing everything their own way. Eventually, what became clear is that we were a lot of people not getting enough done for how big we were. A 2000 person engineering team is a massive investment. Customers should benefit and the company should get a large ROI.” Alex Roetter Former Senior Vice President of Engineering
“We were onboarding 40 new engineers every two weeks. It quickly became more and more difficult for key knowledge to reach everyone, and for management to ensure a broad-based understanding. We needed a way to teach new engineers how to become Facebook engineers. Our culture was communicated in how we did things.” Wayne Chang Former Engineering Bootcamp Program Lead

How Program Managers rely on PlusPlus

“Not everyone is suited for learning by assets, and some need that face-time and the ability to ask questions in real-time. Offering 1:1s is really an extension of blended learning. It makes the whole experience comprehensive.” John Zinni Rollout Manager
“I needed a create programs that didn’t need to be micromanaged. I don’t want my team to be the bottleneck in having to do manual tasks like setting up learning events, sending email invitations, and following up. We implemented PlusPlus so we don’t have to be the total managers in handling everything.” Sandi Friend Sr. Instructional Engineer