Enerplus is an independent North American exploration and production company focused on developing high-quality assets through a disciplined, returns-based capital program. Driven by operational excellence in a safe and responsible manner, the company culture encourages innovation, creativity, and accountability, and leverages the diversity of thought across the company to make it stronger.
The leadership team at Enerplus views people and culture as the foundation of their success. To proactively shape the desired culture required to deliver results, they launched a company-wide initiative in 2017 to identify the key cultural beliefs—including skills and behaviors such as collaboration, inclusivity, and creativity—deemed critical to delivering value to stakeholders and employees alike.
With the new cultural beliefs in place, Pam Garden, Senior Employee Experience Specialist, and her colleagues on the People and Culture Team needed to deliver learning experiences that would help their people develop and strengthen these skills.
But with a geographically dispersed group of employees and pressures on spending, there wasn’t a set program for learning and development in place that could reach everyone and deliver learning in the flow of work. It was difficult to instill a company-wide learning culture influencing employees on a regular basis and in a cost-effective way.
Pam and her team became intrigued by the concept of microlearning because it would be easily accessible and digestible by employees. They identified Blue Ocean Brain as a learning partner because the microlearning firm’s content perfectly aligned to their cultural beliefs and their client success program would allow for ongoing tweaking and adjustment as Enerplus continued to shape its culture.
The power of the drip
Using Blue Ocean Brain, they could drip out content related to their cultural beliefs to set the tone, convey impactful stories, and build confidence in their learners—allowing them to manage their culture in a more proactive way.
As Garden says, “Culture produces results at the end of the day—good or bad. With Blue Ocean Brain, we can deliver targeted learning around the cultural beliefs we are looking to cultivate, which in turn influences our people to generate positive results for our company.”
At Enerplus, everyone has access to Blue Ocean Brain from day one. Enerplus pushes one microlearning lesson a week to its employees via email, but new content is available daily in the office or in the field via the mobile app. The daily topics are also available on-demand through Blue Ocean Brain’s easily searchable library. As an additional way to drive engagement, a new lesson and eye-catching image are dynamically updated on the intranet every day to draw learners in, giving them 365 days a year of potential learning.
To make things smooth for the end user, they enabled a Single Sign On function. “It’s really helped reduce the barriers to entry,” Garden explains. “Especially if you are in the field or like to enjoy learning outside the office, for example, on the train or bus to work.”
"With Blue Ocean Brain, we can deliver targeted learning around the cultural beliefs we are looking to cultivate, which in turn influences our people to generate positive results for our company.”
Since launching, Blue Ocean Brain’s microlearning platform has become the learning destination for culture at Enerplus. Microlearning content is organized, customized, and delivered to align with Enerplus’s learning needs and cultural beliefs. The company’s other learning platforms and resources are now linked within the Blue Ocean Brain environment to allow for one-click access for their people.
Live webcasts offer deeper learning
After realizing how well the content aligns with their cultural belief initiatives, the team began adding Blue Ocean Brain educational webcasts as a way to heighten focus on specific learning themes for their employees. As Pam says, “The webcasts are a way for us to bring everyone together to learn and dialogue on a topic in an affordable way.”
The webcasts augment an in-person learning forum that was previously designed in-house. This has freed up time for the People and Culture team, allowing them to easily deploy content and continue to host discussion follow ups with employees. “We don’t have to worry as much about being the experts at getting the best content because Blue Ocean Brain takes care of that for us,” Garden explains. That leaves Garden and her team free to focus on involving management as learning sponsors on webcasts, creating development opportunities for employees to step up as in-person discussion facilitators, among other important tasks.
Garden believes Blue Ocean Brain has helped Enerplus meet the cultural shifts they are striving for—and then some. “We continually work at shifting our culture for the better,” Garden explains. “Your business will change. The market will change. You need your people thinking and acting differently to navigate those changes. Taking an agile approach to culture lets you manage that change.” With Blue Ocean Brain’s help, Garden and her team have seen that culture-change take hold.
“We don’t have to worry as much about being the experts at getting the best content because Blue Ocean Brain takes care of that for us."
Now that Enerplus has met their initial goals, Garden and her team are looking to take the next step. They have implemented a plan to guide their company through a new set of future results for 2023 and are pushing lessons focused on the updated set of cultural beliefs. Their Blue Ocean Brain content builds on previous skills that helped shape Enerplus’s culture in a positive way. For Garden, culture really is the key to getting desired business results, and Blue Ocean Brain was the way for a company as geographically broad as Enerplus to take an active role in shaping their company culture.