The HOYTS Group is a leading media and entertainment company that is home to HOYTS Cinemas & Val Morgan Group. The HOYTS Cinema brand provides movie goers with a big-picture experience across 59 locations geographically dispersed across Australia and New Zealand. Val Morgan group provides advertisers with unique opportunity to reach audiences across Cinema, Outdoor and Digital platforms.




Movies and entertainment

Organisation Size

3,000 employees




Viva Engage, Microsoft Teams


The HOYTS Group were on a mission to maximise their digital employee experience with an Enterprise Social Network (ESN) capable of connecting their corporate and frontline staff through two-way communication.

With their Workplace by Meta license due to expire in 2024, and corporate staff already using Microsoft Teams, the entertainment giant saw this opportunity to unify their employees within the M365 ecosystem and launch tools which kept them communicating whenever, wherever they were located.

Using our specialised Workplace to Viva Engage migration tool, Engage Squared was delighted to migrate over 300 groups and support the move of 3,000 users from Workplace to Viva Engage and launch Microsoft Teams to their frontline workers.

The challenge

The HOYTS Group had observed a disconnect between their corporate and frontline workers and wanted to implement an ESN that would bring all staff together on one consolidated platform and empower employees to engage with each other.

The transition to Viva Engage comprised of two challenges and subsequent phases:

  • A like-for-like migration of Workplace by Meta pages to Viva Engage: The first challenge to address was migrating their existing Facebook Workplace data – groups (functioning as communities), posts, and media (images and videos) – to their new Viva Engage environment. This consisted of over 550 groups, encompassing a diverse range from formal executive channels to location-specific and social communities.
  •  A comprehensive people enablement program: The second challenge was enabling their dispersed workforce to use two new tools: Viva Engage across their entire organisation for communication and social networking, and Microsoft Teams across their frontline workers to allow them to access Viva Engage whilst on the go. With their workforce consisting of 11% corporate workers (who already communicated via Teams) and 89% frontline workers, it was important that everyone was educated on best-practices and ‘which-tool-when’ to ensure they were addressing siloed ways of working and improving their connection.

Our approach

The first step was a collaborative discovery phase to ensure all aspects of the migration were addressed. We partnered with The HOYTS Group project team to identify valuable groups within Workplace, prioritising those critical for migration. We recognised the differences between Workplace’s group types (Open, Private, Secret) and Viva Engage’s (Open, Private) and addressed challenges like historical user access, content types, and private messages. By openly communicating with The HOYTS Group, we could adapt our migration approach to their specific needs.

We then focused on the people enablement discovery focused on The HOYTS Group’s communication culture. This focused on three main areas:

  • Analysing The HOYTS Group’s workforce and key stakeholders.
  • Understanding how Workplace was used and what support may be required.
  • Defining what goals and successful Viva Engage adoption metrics were being assessed.

From there we moved onto the migration phase; utilising Engage Squared’s specialised migration tool to transfer data from Workplace to Viva Engage. The tool was specifically designed to crawl other ESNs, mapping how they were configured in the background and allowing us to migrate the data into Viva Engage.

We performed a test migration to validate our assumptions and ensure the configurations were correct. Based on the priorities of the groups, we were able to create a structured schedule and conduct a series of migration phases. This approach allowed us to fine tune the configurations and load testing of the tools.

In parallel to the migration, our team got working on addressing the outcomes of what was uncovered in the people enablement discovery. Three key areas of success were developed:

  • Designing a governance system that aligned with The HOYTS Group’s goal to be supported at The HOYTS Group, corporate level, but regionally empowered.
  • Developing a comprehensive communication plan, including targeted messaging and awareness campaigns to prepare users for the transition.
  • Delivering a training at all levels of The HOYTS Group to ensure a successful launch and ongoing use.


After overcoming several technical challenges, we were delighted to successfully launch Viva Engage, including migrating the desired content over to Viva Engage and enabling The HOYTS Group’s end users to adopt the new platform. Some have said the launch was a box-office breaking hit…

The benefits of launching Viva Engage include:

  • One ecosystem: The successful implementation of a Microsoft ESN allowed The HOYTS Group corporate staff and frontline workforce to come together on a unified ecosystem. This facilitated a simpler login process to alleviate end user frustration and confusion, and cost-savings for The HOYTS Group by no longer being required to license and manage multiple communication platforms.
  • Easily accessible: By developing a diverse community structure for Viva Engage, we ensured content shared on the platform is simple to moderate and easily accessible. This ensures that important updates, content, and news at The HOYTS Group can reach all end-users, irrespective of role, in a timely and effective fashion. Users can explore, post, and engage via open communities without significant moderation. If there is a guideline breach, community managers and corporate communicators are alerted and can take immediate action.
  • Improved governance: Our recommended governance approach achieved the objective of facilitating a less restrictive platform. This approach has ensured that The HOYTS Group Viva Engage communities are open for end-users to explore, post and engage with, however, a team of upskilled The HOYTS Group community managers and corporate communicators are empowered with a variety of tools to take immediate action should content breach guidelines.
  • Increased productivity and collaboration: While the majority focus was on migrating to Viva Engage, corporate employees required upskilling on collaborative ways-of-working to get the most out of Microsoft Teams. This resulted in:
  • An increase of best-practice behaviours, such as using Teams instead of email and storing files in Teams channels.
  • Corporate users embracing Teams as their portal to Viva Engage, with a high percentage of “9-to-5” traffic coming via the Microsoft Teams app.

The stats:

  • 1,259 unique users across the first month
  • 24 communities with over 100 engaged users per month
  • 55 communities with over 1,000 activities per month
  • 300 groups migrated to Viva Engage
  • Facilitated the move of 3,000 users from Workplace to Viva Engage

Want to hear first-hand from HOYTS Group? Register for our upcoming webinar on 27 June 

Learn more about the technology used in this case study

Viva Engage
Viva Engage is an enterprise social networking service. It connects leaders, communicators, and employees to build communities, share knowledge, and engage the people of your organisation. It provides and open and dynamic communication tool that seamlessly integrates with M365 tools such as SharePoint Online and Teams.
Microsoft Teams
Microsoft Teams is a collaboration app built for hybrid work so you and your team stay informed, organised, and connected — all in one place. It includes functions such as chat, channels and teams, calendars, apps, and the ability to conduct calls and meetings, while seamlessly integrating with existing M365 tools.