Year Up
Enhancing communication and collaboration for staff connecting young adults and employers
Where it started
Year Up is a non-profit that connects young adults who need opportunity with companies who need their talent. They engaged Futurehaus to evaluate new intranet solutions to replace their outdated system. They wanted the best tool to facilitate communication and collaboration for more than 1000 staff across 34 geographically dispersed offices.
  • Launch of new hub for internal communication
    and collaboration to connect people

    across the organization
  • Conversational interfaces and user-friendly
    design to simplify daily work
  • Evaluation of solutions for new website
  • Coaching to support adoption of
    agile methodologies
  • Design thinking practices embraced
    throughout organization
Metrics at a glance
Decrease in duplicate tools
New org roles
active staff
The Welcome to Workplace group, created to support employees adoption and use of the platform.
Year Up Assistant, a chat bot, providing the Daily Briefing to an employee, via the Workplace Chat mobile app.
What we did
We quickly determined that Year Up staff were using nearly 80 different systems and tools, 50 of which were communication or collaboration focused, to address their diverse business needs. This “shadow IT” was not efficient, reliable, or safe; it actually discouraged staff collaboration.

We conducted in-depth research and led several workshops to identify how to design a one-stop, internal communications hub that would meet the needs of the staff. Collaboratively, we selected as the primary tool Workplace, a Facebook product that is intuitive to use and offers messaging capability. We set up a conversational interface by partnering with, a bot platform that uses machine learning and natural language processing. As an added benefit, this advanced interface enabled connectivity between Year Up’s new Workplace hub and other, existing organizational tools. We also trained their internal staff on how to manage and further develop this powerful capacity. Our overall solution did not require us to build from scratch an expensive, custom tool. We released the new hub in phases to maximize staff adoption and engagement.

We trained Year Up staff on our design thinking approach and helped identify roles, job descriptions, and an operational process for their new, in-house Innovation Lab. The Lab will continue the work of refining the hub and enable Year Up to anticipate and address future needs internally and collaboratively.
  • Design, technology, and innovation strategy
  • Communication and change management strategy
  • Design and innovation workshop facilitation
  • Research, including stakeholder
    and expert interviews
  • Prototyping
  • User experience and visual design
  • Agile product development and implementation
  • Launch and product support
  • Adoption and engagement campaign
  • Internal product team training
In collaboration with
“Futurehaus injects the best of innovative design thinking into an organization and I highly recommend them for their level of professionalism and expertise.”
Mary Barton-Rau, Senior Director Application Enablement
Year Up
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