Mercer – A small team delivering huge results

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Mercer is one of the world’s leading firms for superannuation, investments, health and human resources consulting and products. Across the globe, organisations look to Mercer’s 30,000+ colleagues for global insights, thought leadership, and product innovation to help transform and grow their businesses.

The nature of Mercer’s work requires a high level of emotional intelligence and a commitment to process and detail. To continue to offer the exceptional level of service its customers have come to expect, Mercer knows a dedication to lifelong learning, training and continuous improvement is a must.

Increasing capacity and complexity

In 2017, Mercer’s Learning and Development team were working tirelessly with its Customer Experience and Platforms teams to create training which supported the organisation’s strategy. A need arose when the small team identified a requirement for a purpose-built, yet complex training program. This situation uncovered the legacy tools the team were using were clearly out of date and cumbersome – the team faced barriers in creating role-based learning which in turn, did not actively engage learners or monitor their experience and performance. The team started to look at how it could deliver better outcomes with the same resources.

“We needed to increase both the capacity, complexity and relevance of our training at that point – in order to address both our organisational goals as well as industry and future of work requirements.”

Mercer’s Customer Experience and Platforms Learning Leader, Melissa Haley

Tapping into organisational knowledge

It was well known that colleagues within Mercer (from outside of the learning and development function) held an incredible level of experience and expertise. If the team could find a simple method to capture and share this knowledge, its learning and development efforts and outputs would increase by orders of magnitude. But how could it capture and transfer this unique knowledge without disrupting the day-to-day productivity of its workforce? The key, according to the team, was to empower and compel non-L&D colleagues to create content using a cost-effective and intuitive platform.

Leveraging Tribal Habits for rapid content creation

This was when the team started using Tribal Habits for rapid training content creation. The platform’s intuitive drag-and-drop editor meant that staff members could create engaging training modules with little or no technical training required. By engaging subject matter experts to share their knowledge, Mercer would build a broadly accessible suite of customised training around approaches that were proven to work within its unique business landscape.
Mercer saw two distinct benefits at play here:

  1. The first was that the new system would allow current members of the L&D team to create learning experiences that were engaging, structured and repeatable in a fraction of the time it took them to build in traditional tools.
  2. Secondly, Tribal Habits was so easy to use that the L&D team could directly engage with subject matters experts by bringing them onto the platform to create training modules based on their unique knowledge and skill set.

“By engaging our subject matter experts, the number of people creating training content at Mercer exploded. Initially, it was just the four people in the L&D team, and today we have over 30 contributors, and that number is growing every week.”

Mercer’s Customer Experience and Platforms Learning Leader, Melissa Haley

The evolution

Once the product was rolled out, it was quickly identified that the majority of the organisation’s training fell into a handful of categories. Templates around how to create training for each of these categories were rapidly spun up. Now when a colleague’s knowledge is tapped into, they are provided with a detailed template and instructed to ‘fill in the blanks’, even further reducing the friction to create training. This information is then passed back to the L&D team, who assisted by Sage (the Tribal Habits Training AI) review and polish the program with a learning, engagement and interaction lens.

“Tribal Habits is intuitive and simple to use, yet has incredible functionality that is regularly advanced upon. The fact that anyone at Mercer can now create training has removed the bottlenecks that used to be present in our training creation. This has allowed us to access and maximise the incredible depth of knowledge and expertise within our organisation.”

Mercer’s Customer Experience and Platforms Learning Leader, Melissa Haley

Tribal Habits has allowed the L&D team to focus solely on the learning experience. By engaging subject matter experts to assist in the creation of training, the L&D team no longer needs to develop an understanding of each training topic. Using the processes now in place allows each contributor to do what they do best and saves time and effort in the process.

“Tribal Habits has allowed us to stick to what we’re good at. The experts provide technical knowledge, and we can make sure it works from a learning and engagement point of view. They don’t waste time working out how best to present their knowledge, and we don’t waste time trying to develop a detailed knowledge of complex concepts.”

Mercer’s Customer Experience and Platforms Learning Leader, Melissa Haley

Same resource. Greater output. Transparent results

From a sheer content creation point of view, Mercer’s team of four L&D professionals created more than 80 modules of training in the Jan-Oct period of 2019, with 2625 separate learning experiences and a Net Promoter Score for this mode of delivery of +27.

“Even though our team is the same size, we’re producing learning opportunities like never before. There is simply no way we could have created this culture around learning in our part of the business without Tribal Habits.”

Mercer’s Customer Experience and Platforms Learning Leader, Melissa Haley

The team has created role-based, behavioural and even client-specific training, which is providing a level of detail and guidance not seen before at Mercer. Some of the client-specific training has been shared directly with the client, greatly increasing engagement and understanding and going a long way to strengthening these vital relationships.

Mercer is also able to respond to changes much more quickly. Recent shifts in superannuation legislation, for example, required training to be delivered to 150 consultants in a short time frame. Within a week of the new legislation being released, Mercer was able to create an online learning experience and roll it out to over 150 consultants, informing them of the changes and their new responsibilities and tracked their understanding and adherence.

‘’With something like changing legislation, you have to get it right and get it right quickly. You need to monitor competency carefully so as to fill any gaps in a short space of time. This is a challenge often faced in our industry, yet we were able to deliver confidently and successfully. ”

Mercer’s Customer Experience and Platforms Learning Leader, Melissa Haley

Tribal Habits has enabled Mercer to move training from a passive requirement to an active engagement. By leveraging, audio, video and interactive elements like quizzes and on-the-job training, Mercer is now capturing two-way feedback from learners and has a real understanding whether the training it has delivered has been effective or not. The team is constantly reviewing this feedback to optimise its current training modules and to identify where further training is required.

“The two-way feedback in Tribal Habits helps guide our training efforts. If we identify gaps, we can quickly modify the delivery or explanation – just as you would in a face to face environment. Our training is now sustainable, repeatable and efficient– we have a system where we can create once, modify as needed and deliver often.”

Mercer’s Customer Experience and Platforms Learning Leader, Melissa Haley


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