The Changing Face of Internal Communications: How To Keep Up And Stay Relevant
The importance of internal communication has been universally recognized by the business community in recent years. All around the world, employers, managers, and owners have come to realize that the message they send to their employees is just as important as the message they send to the public, perhaps even more so.
Recent studies show that employees working in “purpose-driven” companies that are able to clearly communicate their internal message are dramatically more engaged and, consequently, more productive.
The nature and the means of internal communication have gone through significant changes over the course of the past few years, and they continue to evolve as technology is racing to provide companies with more effective solutions for information sharing. With the rise of remote teams and the ever-growing need for mobility, creating and curating channels of internal communication is becoming increasingly vital to the success of a business.
There is a large number of factors that make up an effective internal communications strategy, but if you’re in a hurry, here’s a quick checklist of crucial focus points:
- Ease of access
Now, let’s delve a bit deeper into each of these factors, to see how they fare in today’s business landscape.
Today more than ever, transparency and a free flow of relevant information are essential for a healthy working environment. Employees need to understand at all times where the company is heading and what is their role in this process, rather than being kept in the dark about the mystical workings of the upper management.
Transparent internal communication also includes important two-way feedback that allows the employees to see that their work is noticed and objectively evaluated, and lets the management know how happy or unhappy the employees are with the overall work environment and their own situation within the company. Transparent feedback can also shine a light on middle management - traditionally the most “invisible” part of company’s workforce.
Creating an internal communications infrastructure that allows your message to reach all employees in a short time frame is highly important. This is absolutely essential whenever a significant change is introduced to the work process and all employees need to get on board quickly, as well as in times of crisis when communicating a clear and unambiguous message can prevent rumors and hearsay and help buffer a turbulent situation.
The important thing is to implement a system that reaches all employees simultaneously in a place where they expect it. There are various solutions to this issue, but whichever you choose, it is paramount that the employees embrace the chosen solution and use it in their everyday work.
Left unmoderated, the free flow of information can be a double-edged sword. Employees can get fatigued by the overflow of information and important messages can get lost in the noise. Therefore, it is essential that information is moderated and filtered, not to be whitewashed or censored, but so that the employees receive relevant information without any unnecessary clutter.
In order for this process to work efficiently, a company needs to implement a quick and efficient chain of approval within the company’s hierarchy for all information broadcasted internally. This system ensures relevance, consistency, and timeliness of the message.
Ease of Access
A company’s message can be as clearly defined and well structured as possible, but it will fall flat if the employees don’t know where to find it or have to seek it out. If you want your message to be received by all employees, you should look to deliver it in a convenient manner, to a place where the employees expect to find it or simply can’t miss it.
Some companies will choose email, but in this day and age, it is hardly an ideal solution, due to our overloaded inboxes. An internal chat is also not an ideal solution, because it is quite informal and information tends to get lost in the general chatter.
You checked all the boxes. Now what?
The right thing to do will be to put all your important work-related communication in one well-structured place. Intranet, an internal company portal, is a great solution due to its multi-purpose nature.
A well-structured internal communication platform can perform multiple roles: a knowledge base, a platform for collaboration, an information broadcast tool, and many more. Ideally, the intranet will become an essential part of the work process, containing all the information and tools necessary for one’s work, and the primary vehicle for internal communication.
This is why we recommend using BlogIn, a simple internal company blog tool, as a smart and highly effective internal platform that empowers companies to streamline their information channels in a convenient manner. Simply put, it meets all the above-mentioned criteria.
Such platform allows employees to have all the necessary work resources in one place and ensure that information is distributed timely and effectively, all in accordance with the company’s hierarchy.
BlogIn can also be integrated with a tool like Slack, to ensure that all parties have all the relevant information regardless of time and place. Hereto, desktop notifications help the participant get on with the information flow in a matter of minutes.
Advanced categorization and tagging options ensure that all internal information and company knowledge is efficiently organized in one easy-searchable place.
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In the ever-changing landscape of the modern work, maintaining a modicum of stability and clarity is absolutely essential. A smart strategy for internal communications can go a long way in creating and maintaining a healthy and productive work atmosphere. It helps the employees gain clarity, purpose, and a sense of involvement, but it also allows the employers to better understand their workforce and create a more engaging and fulfilling working experience.