Elevating UNI Global Union's 6th World Congress: A Tectonica Case Study
UI/UX Design, Email Strategy, Graphic Design, Video
As our globalised world faces a crisis of inequality, stagnating workers' living conditions and rights, and increasing wealth differentials, the ability of unions to innovate and meet the challenge of standing together in these times becomes ever more essential. While unions world-wide have overall faced some major setbacks these past decades, a new moment of collective power is rising as evidenced by this year’s significant shift in labour unions gain in support and campaign wins. One of the pivotal players in this essential movement is UNI Global Union, a global labour federation encompassing unions from over 150 countries, and representing more than 20 million workers.
Earlier this year UNI was presented with a key opportunity in its behemoth task of protecting workers' rights and advancing social justice: their 6th World Congress in Philadelphia. This Congress, occurring only every 4-5 years, united a diverse array of influential union leaders and delegates from the organisation’s affiliate unions representing 109 countries, each with unique cultural, geographical, and operational differences - but with a shared goal of expanding collective bargaining, advancing social and economic justice, holding corporations accountable and transforming an unfair global economy.
Under the theme "Rising Together," the Congress emphasised the power that arises when we come together to promote unity, capacitate leadership, build on best practices, and forge deeper relationships based on shared goals. In every aspect of its framing, UNI's Congress needed to symbolise unity and project its growing strength at this critical moment, with so many influential union leaders converging. UNI’s challenge lay in optimising this rare event to bolster the diverse array of organising efforts to support greater collaboration and unity, all while planning for the future.
To address these goals, UNI partnered with Tectonica to streamline and unify event communications, spotlight best practices, and provide affiliates a chance to embrace the organisation's values. This innovative partnership delivered design and communication solutions, a result of Tectonica's in-depth investigation with key stakeholders to comprehend their input and needs, with the aim of maximising the Congress's impact and facilitating deeper relationships among members for enhanced solidarity.
Tectonica’s Strategic Approach
Understanding UNI's desire to leverage the Congress as a platform to unify, engage and empower its diverse community, we focused on optimising the event's impact through strategic communication and a visual identity aligned with its objectives.
Our approach centred on working closely with UNI’s communications department to ensure consistent design quality and effective messaging that resonated with the organisation's strategic goals throughout the event. We actively supported UNI in delivering communications that were relevant to members and unified in theme via email, newsletter, and social media channels. This support extended beyond the event, encompassing the lead-up and post-event phases.
Tectonica conducted an analysis of UNI’s diverse membership, crafting communications that catered to their interests while being matched to strategic opportunities for the organisation. Our strategy provided practical event information, compelling member-centric stories, and introduced new movements within the organisation. This approach sparked interest, upheld UNI’s values, and encouraged capacity building and deeper relationships within their community.
Unified, High-Quality Visual Identity:
Tectonica's role extended beyond graphic design; it was about applying and expanding the Congress’ visual identity, propagating it through all kinds of materials (from video to social media templates, to photo-opportunity panels, etc.). We carefully crafted comprehensive design solutions across digital and physical platforms, ensuring brand unity across all materials.
Event Communications to Elevate Member Cohesion:
We crafted an extensive communication strategy for the event, capitalising on a unique opportunity to cultivate a deeper relationship with UNI’s members via their primary communication channel. Specific elements included the delivery of content tailored to membership interests to forge a deeper connection, as well as the design of email templates, and language-based segmentation of UNI's email list. We also created a set of multilingual reports for the different groups that assisted the Congress and made sure to optimise them for desktop and mobile, ensuring they were readable and easy to read on their devices.
Digital Engagement for Unity & Awareness:
Tapping into the impact of digital engagement, we designed eye-catching social media templates to promote the event, engage attendees, and highlight key moments from the Congress across multiple platforms. Additionally, we created several videos and video elements, slide templates for use during panels and presentations, etc.
UNI is an organisation that truly represents workers from all over the world, and with an extensive network of affiliates in the global south. This aspect of international representation, and the intention to make this a truly inclusive Congress, was key from the beginning and we are deeply grateful to UNI’s team for collaborating with us towards this objective.
Tectonica's collaboration with UNI for the 6th World Congress underscores our belief that change happens when you prioritise relationships. By devising a communications strategy and design elements focused on unity in building power, and addressing core challenges, we helped UNI elevate their event to new heights. The resounding success of the Congress stands as a testament to our collective efforts. As UNI continues its mission to champion workers’ rights worldwide, Tectonica remains a trusted partner, continuing to work alongside them in their pursuit of a more just and equitable world.
“Tectonica’s input on the communication’s strategy for our Congress helped us innovate and reach key stakeholders in new ways. The team’s speed, creativity, flexibility and quality work was amazing and helped us have a successful event. We are using the lessons we learned to continue growing engagement.”
UNI Head of Communications