Though commercial success has always been dependent on a business’s ability to adapt to changes in consumer behavior and the environment, the pace and extent have increased exponentially.
For many companies, growth and success present quite the learning curve. While how businesses adapt may differ across industries and brands, the one factor universally essential was effective communication.
Businesses often prioritize external communication and engagement with their customers, but many, especially when working remotely, had to learn how to adapt their internal communications to serve their employees best.
A recent study found that teams who fail to recognize and adjust to business growth faced significant difficulties.
In addition, prioritizing internal communications and ensuring employees are informed means they’re more likely to stay engaged and motivated in their work. An engaged employee is 17% more productive than an unengaged employee, indicating significant benefits for businesses committed to prioritizing their internal communications.
To help businesses keep their teams informed with effective internal communications, we have outlined three essential considerations.
Prioritize regular, transparent updates
According to research by Gallup, 74% of employees feel they’re missing out on company news.
Given that company updates can play a huge role in keeping staff engaged and motivated, it’s crucial businesses get this right. By prioritizing regular, frequent updates, companies can ensure that each communication is relatively easy to digest, so employees remain informed without feeling overwhelmed.
Furthermore, while businesses may not be in a position to make any promises, given the number of redundancies made last year, keeping internal communications regarding business recovery transparent could help to ease employee anxiety.
A simple round-up of sales figures, or even a thank you to staff for their part in delivering a particularly successful week, could prove very effective.
Make Use of Multichannel Communications
Just as we would recommend utilizing multichannel communications for customer messaging, we would also recommend this for internal updates. After all, just as your customers will have differing channel preferences, so too will your staff.
The fact that just 13% of employees check their intranet daily highlights the risk of either a delay in information reaching employees or a large segment of the workforce missing a communication altogether when using only one channel. With that in mind, ensuring communications are sent via multiple channels increases the likelihood of business messages actually reaching employees and successfully keeping them informed.
In addition, there are specific channels that naturally lend themselves to particular message types.
For instance, for shorter, time-sensitive messages like a reminder before a company-wide update, SMS can be beneficial. Not only does it benefit from an open rate of 95%, but as 90% of text messages are also read within 3 minutes, the reach and speed can help support employee communications.
Promote Cross-Team Interactions
4 out of 5 employees believe that effective internal business communication can help their job performance. However, on average, each employee spends 2.5 hours every day searching for information to complete tasks. For example, the correct VAT number to assign to a purchase order.
In order to keep employees informed and reduce the time spent looking for information, it’s vital that employers are empowering their staff to join the conversation and interact with other teams.
There are several ways employers can approach this,
- Hosting and encouraging cross-team socials (on or offline)
- Organizing quarterly company-wide updates to include a synopsis from department heads
- Or even introducing various working groups
The department head updates can prove particularly effective, as not only does it ask teams to reflect on the previous quarter and relay what they have achieved, but it also updates the broader business on their upcoming goals. This then gives employees an opportunity to communicate whether they have any data or experience that may help on a project and highlight activities that employees may want to work on as part of their professional development.
Internal communications have a direct impact on employee engagement, productivity, and overall business consistency. Keeping staff informed is essential, and given that only 4 in 10 employees can confidently describe to others what their business does, it’s clear this still needs work. But for companies committed to effectively communicating with their staff, there are tangible benefits.
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