The Defence Forces has launching an ‘Internal Communications Platform’ - CONNECT
The Chief of Staff has highlighted ‘Internal Communications’ (IC) as one of his key priorities to further resource and develop.
The requirement for the development of this digital Internal IC project was requested by our DF members as a direct result of feedback received in employee engagement surveys and during IC road-shows.
The purpose of Connect is to give all DF members equal and secure access to strategic and tactical information.
Connect will enhance and improve the range and scope of DF information sharing, while building trust in leadership and assisting in the modernisation of the Force.
During 2021 the Public Relations Branch (PRB) launched an extensive tendering process, with the winning app developer awarded in Q3 2022.
The winning provider is Workivo Ltd an Irish software company, who are the market leaders in digital employee engagement and communications.
Detailed information outlined below, further questions to: email@example.com
- Do I register with my civilian email or my DF email.
We recommend you register with your civilian email address for a few reasons.
- The idea of Connect is to give people remote access to information, if you lock your account and need to reset your password this is easier done through your civilian email address rather than when you are back to your DF computer next.
- Not everyone in the DF has a DF email address, if they do a smaller proportion of these don't have Internet access through their DF computer. Internet access is required to verify your email address and set up your password.
If you have a DF computer and you have Internet access you can us your DF email address if you wish.
- Can I be messaged through Connect?
No. Workvivo have a chat function on their platform however we have it turned off as members of the DF did not request a chat function
- Can I be detailed through Connect?
No, Connect is an opt in platform. Not every member of the DF will register for Connect so commanders cannot use it to directly contact a person to inform them they are detailed for a task. Connect is able to host restricted information so details can be posted on Connect however this gives DF personnel remote access to what is on their unit noticeboard. The noticeboard or phone call is still the primary source of a DF person being informed of a tasking.
- What happens with the data I register with?
The general rule of thumb with all online platforms is if its free to register you are the customer. The Defence Forces has entered into a contract with Workvivo to provide Connect to DF members so the Defence Forces is the customer. As part of our procurement and contract with them they have signed a data sharing agreement where we share data with Workvivo from PMS as part of the registration verification process. Also part of the agreement is that any details you voluntarily give to Workvivo while registering is not shared with any 3rd party and is solely for use for the verification process or your account on Connect.
- When is the RDF being onboarded?
The Internal Comms office is currently in negotiations with several key stakeholders to line up the RDF verification process with the PDF verification process. We hope to progress this to develope a timeline later this year.
The Defence Forces have designed Connect which is a free downloadable mobile and tablet application (App) - available from both Apple & Google Play Stores.
The main aim of the IC App is to enhance personnel access to Unit, Brigade, Directorate and DF wide information remotely and securely.
The IC App provides a customisable environment for each user to tailor the content which is most important and relevant to you such as, upcoming events, operations, overseas, training, sports and wellbeing.
- How will the Connect benefit me?
Connect will provide DF members with direct access to General Staff news, Commission on the Defence Forces updates, as well as the ability to manage a personal events calendar, access documents, view lectures, listen back to DF podcasts, engage with all social media content and deliver live feedback all from on your personal device.
Connect will assist personnel to plan and manage in their week, month, year and career. This will be achieved by each responsible directorate(s) publishing documents in relation to training, education, vacancies, career course planning dates and overseas schedules. All of these resources together will enable personnel to manage their work / life balance at the touch of a button.
DF Members will also be able to engage with many of our services in relation to Personal Service Support (PSS), Chaplaincy Service, DF Physiotherapist or the Military Police (MPs).
There will also be opportunities to engage with ‘DF Sports Teams, Athletics and Adventure Groups’ by viewing fixture schedules upcoming training camps and how to get involved.
Connect provides the tools and resources to better inform yourself and plan from basic training to deploying overseas or by assisting in applying for new opportunities internally.
Connect will also benefit those who currently have access to all the above information already, other Workvivo customers say that email/phone traffic reduces around 40% when personnel know where to find the information themselves.
- When is the Connect coming?
The platform is now open to register to all PDF members.
- How do I access the Connect?
As part of the ‘Launch Campaign’ in your Brigade / Formation – the IC Team visited all Barracks to host a demonstration of all features with a Q&A workshop.
You will be able to access the platform by scanning the QR code found on our launch posters, social media posts, IKON posts, An Cosantóir Magazine and here on our website in the Member's Area: https://irishdefenceforces.workvivo.com/unwired-registration
- Where do I find help if needed?
Connect has a help centre with tips & tricks / Q&A section. Workvivo will also have a 24/7 help centre and the Internal Comms Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or ext. 2511 also be available during working hours.