The AXA Hello: Onboarding gifts bring culture to life

AXA works with MSL to create an engaging 'hello' for new starters during lockdown, helping them settle in to their week-long onboarding experience.

Year: 2023
Achievement/category: Winner in Offline Communications and Shortlisted in Employee Engagement
Client: AXA
Agency: MSL
Industry: Accountancy, banking and finance

MSL logo

About the campaign

AXA recognised that the first days in a new business can feel cold and impersonal, with new starters often having to complete hours of compulsory regulatory training. The company created the AXA Hello – a week-long onboarding experience to help people get to know the culture and engage with the business from the start.

New colleagues receive a welcome pack at their home with five gifts to be opened each day of their first week. Each gift was designed to help them settle in, and represented a unique aspect of AXA’s culture. The packaging included a QR code that took colleagues to a unique digital experience bringing that cultural pillar to life. The gifts included a mood lamp speaker (to show a supportive culture); a notebook (encouraging them to note their wellbeing needs); some funky socks (reflecting AXA’s commitment to welcoming difference); a desktop plant (to nurture their ambitions); and aromatherapy (to help them relax and focus on wellbeing).

After months of lockdowns and the introduction of hybrid working, it was invaluable to provide new joiners with a physical touchpoint. Over the first six months the company delivered almost 900 packs, with 886 visitors to the digital experience, and 85,000+ engagements about the pack on social media. The majority of new joiners were thrilled to receive the pack and said the content was useful or very useful, while more than half said they felt closer to the AXA brand and purpose.

Judges’ comments

Our panel said this submission showed how important it is to find a way to connect with colleagues in the hybrid working era – a journey that many organisations are still trying to navigate. The real strength was in the way the organisational culture was brought to life. The design was strong throughout, and our judges really felt the warmth and intention behind AXA’s welcome pack.