Cornell’s Johnson Graduate School of Business
had a robust community on their physical
campus, but they needed to figure out how
to bring this community online. Their current
tools, including a communication portal, mul-
tiple document sharing platforms and other
dated technologies, were clunky, one-way and
un-engaging. The students were also facing
email overload, which made it difficult for them
to hone in on relevant news, clubs, events, etc. in
The Johnson School needed a way to bring students,
faculty and staff together online in a truly interactive, social
way. They also needed to help students find and discover content
based on their individual interests to reduce what was becoming an over-
whelming volume of email.
• Bring physical community online with an interactive, student-focused platform
• Improve discoverability of groups, events, news and resources relevant to stu-
dents’ individual interests
• Improve relevance of communication to students; reduce mass emails
• Allow students across multiple programs and campuses to find and connect with
others with similar interests
“I am getting spammed by emails that are not relevant
to me. As a result, I miss information and events.”
— Rohin Sood, MBA 2016, Student Council Technology Chair
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— Amanda Soule Shaw
The Johnson School helped to design and then implemented Unity, a
powerful networking tool built specifically for higher ed on the Sales-
force Community Cloud platform. A few of Unity’s features were inte-
gral to the initiative’s success:
Users can easily seek out and join new groups based on their inter-
ests or create their own groups. Events can also be created within the
Group managers have a feed within
their groups visible only to them
Themes and Tags
Users can label all groups, events,
news and resources with themes
and tags to improve searchability
and help students discover relevant
content — rather than having all of
it dumped in their inboxes.
With easily customizable colors,
images, logo and more, the commu-
nity provides a consistent Cornell
experience for its users.
Instead of guessing at how many people are using their intranet, the
Johnson School can now see granular usage data on the backend of
their community and adjust their strategies accordingly.
The Solution: Unity
“Group Managers are really key for
our student clubs because they’ll
have a handful of officers that want
to be able to talk to one another
without the entire group of members
being able to see the information.
For example, the leaders can collab-
orate together to set the agenda for
the next meeting before presenting
it to the wider group.”
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Cornell University received an honorable mention in the Eduventures
Innovation Awards for the robust online community they created with
Assistant Dean, Student Services
Johnson Graduate School of Management
IT Innovation Officer
members of community
over 100 groups
over 420 resources
The Johnson School’s
community currently has:
“We’re working on adoption right now. Our
student community definitely sees where we
are going. I’ve heard from staff that the number
of emails going to students has dramatically
decreased. That was one of our main goals, so
we’re pretty happy about that.
“Unity saved the Johnson School significant
time and money. Deploying this kind of inter-
face for other schools without Unity took
between 6 and 18 months — and the resulting
site wasn’t nearly as flexible or impressive.”
Download Unity Today Get Help with Implementation
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