Internal communications has always taken a backseat when it comes to business priorities.
External comms however has always been a big focus, as companies put their efforts into keeping customers happy without necessarily thinking how much of an impact their employees can have on their success.
This can be seen through the rapid development of external comms within the world of technology, as digital marketing and online PR have taken a big part of many budgets over the last five years or so.
Internal comms has recently come more to the forefront however, as businesses realise that keeping their employees happy is just as important as making their customers happy and a content workforce can make all the difference to business performance.
While it may be a few years behind, internal comms is now starting to make waves in the world of digital as businesses realise that the era of millennials taking up their jobs means social media and online communication is now more important than ever.
Diving into the world of digital internal comms can seem overwhelming, but there are actually a few simple ways to kick-start your digital journey:
While intranets often get a bad rap, it’s almost always the content rather than the channel that leads to a successful digital internal comms strategy. Content needs to be created by employees and for employees.
Communication is a two way street though and that applies to employee engagement as much as anything else. While it’s important that information is communicated clearly and transparently from the top down, information also needs to come from the front line.
There are many different platforms available and giving your employees a voice online can make a huge difference to their happiness and sense of satisfaction.
With millennials checking their phones over 100 times a day, having an app just makes sense when it comes to providing your employees with real-time news and content. It’s easier for people to upload a range of different multimedia straight from a phone too, including photos, videos, GIFs and more.
Apps are great for businesses that have a lot of employees on the go too. If you have remote workers or frequent travellers, they can keep up with business news and colleague views wherever they are.
One of the most powerful tools when it comes to internal communications is digital signage. It can be used to highlight real-time news updates, feature menus, weather forecasts, social media channels and more.
The strategic placement of screens throughout an office can ensure that important information is absorbed and retained by employees. These screens are a great communication tool for businesses that have offices all over the world who need to quickly and efficiently transmit information.
Anything your employees could check on a laptop or phone can be visualised using digital signage. Feedback, praise, opinions, discussions and polls can all be featured using digital signage and give your employees instant content to engage with.
With social media taking over the world, no employee is likely to go a whole day at work without checking at least one, or five, of their social media accounts. This gives businesses the perfect reason to create an internal social channel for their employees to use.
After the launch of Facebook at Work, the lines between personal and professional social network use became more blurred than ever. Yammer, Slack, Skype and Jive are already used all over the world and are changing the way employees communicate online.
There’s no “one size fits all” when it comes to internal comms and digital, and it’s important not to swim against the tide when you do dive into the online world of content and communications.
It’s important to choose a platform your staff already use and provide them with content that will interest them, engage them, and encourage them to get involved.