Motivating employees against all odds

Since the economic crisis, the banking industry needed to rethink how it does business and The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) was dramatically affected by the changes that were made. In 2009, the Non-Core division was born, tasked with selling off assets within a defined time limit. The communications team needed to inspire employees to effectively manage themselves out of a job whilst maintaining motivation right to the end of their contracts.

Our remit was to capture the camaraderie and drive of this high performing RBS division and craft an engagement campaign to maintain momentum so their demanding financial targets were continually met.

What we did

By using red as the dominant colour, instead of the traditional RBS blue, we created a brand that reflected Non-Core’s unique identity within the business. Putting employees ‘In the Spotlight’ by telling their stories and sharing experiences, the campaign went through a series of considered phases. Employees were invited to generate their own content, through video booths and other interactive exercises. Communications were always true to the spirit of the team and reflected their very special sense of humour.

With fundraising events and results reporting, a true sense of community was built. The final phase focused on the achievements of the Non-Core team, a commemorative book and tongue-in-cheek film presented at their final event ensured the Non-Core experience would not be forgotten.

The response

The Non-Core team grew in confidence and really developed an attitude of ‘we can do this’. By the third quarter of the final year the data showed it was mission accomplished and RBS has proved to be safer and stronger as a result, with over £258bn of assets sold off.

As an additional legacy, employee participation in fundraising challenges raised over £180,000 for Maggie’s Cancer Caring Centres.