Wednesday Mar 19, 2014

How Fierce Weather Validated the Potential of Great River Energy’s WebCenter-based Employee Intranet

Author: Steven Sommer, Director of WebCenter Sales, Aurionpro Sena

Soon after the launch of Great River Energy’s fully redesigned WebCenter-based corporate intranet, an unfortunate weather event put the new solution to the test.

A large storm blew through the Midwest just weeks after the new Connect the Dots intranet was rolled out. The storm wreaked havoc on the region and was the cause of several power outages. Turning to the new intranet as a channel of communication to the organization’s almost 900 employees, the corporate communications team published a news story that described the events that had taken place. And that’s when an amazing sequence of events unfolded…

Almost immediately, employees across various divisions started sharing information and interacting through the new WebCenter-based platform. The first feature that individuals took advantage of was the ability to comment on the news story. Field crews provided real-time outage updates. Questions were posted…and actually answered by the “right” employees – subject matter experts. YouTube videos were linked to, delivering visual context to what was happening in the field. And executives not only observed the collaboration that was happening in real time, they also contributed to the conversation. 

By the time power was restored to Great River Energy’s customers, the corporate communications team was able to digest the remarkable turn of events. Although the storm was an unfortunate incident, it turned out to be a catalyst that rapidly accelerated employee adoption of the new intranet. The vision and hard work that was invested in the solution enabled the company to achieve a level of collaboration never before realized. The tool clearly accomplished what the project team had set out to do: connect employees to the business, their members (customers) and each other.

As the implementation lead on Great River Energy’s Connect the Dots intranet project, it was a very satisfying experience to watch the use of the platform expand so rapidly, validating the WebCenter technologies and the set of features that were deployed. For more information on this success story, feel free to get in touch with Steven Sommer at

Great River Energy is a Minnesota-based electric generation and transmission cooperative, one of the largest in the United States. With almost 900 employees, Great River Energy is a not-for-profit that generates close to $1 billion in revenue. Great River Energy -- Powering what’s possible!

Oracle WebCenter is the center of engagement for business—powering exceptional experiences for customers, partners, and employees. It connects people, process, and information with the most complete portfolio of portal, Web experience management, content, imaging and collaboration technologies.


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