Communication planning and having the right internal communication plan doesn’t have to be complicated or time consuming. Whether you are revising your annual employee communication plan or supporting a change initiative, an effective plan should include smart strategies, tactics, clear objectives, compelling key messages and an analysis to measure these strategies.
Vision and Strategy
The communication strategy applies the principle of integrated communication. This means that all communications, both internal and external, are carried by the same corporate identity and culture.
This ensures a unified branding of the core values of the company to radiate to each of the target audiences.
It is important to establish a clear basic structure for communication. This will result in the engagement of employees and management; raising awareness of the different communication channels and means used by the organisation to communicate the key messages.
The channel and key messages should be evaluated over time. Once the communication system works and minor issues have been solved, it is time to evaluate whether the system is embedded in the company. One of the market practices is to implement a survey to gather feedback. Asking for recommendation and ideas of the staff to will enhance the message to create a ‘feeling of us’ amongst all employees.
The way the communication should flow is based on the organisational chart of the organisation. The importance of communication will be shared by management, in line with the responsibilities and tasks the different types of information will be shared and cascaded to the various audience groups.
Communication and Content
There are varies communication tools and ways to ensure the correct transfer of information. Examples are: consultation cycles, town hall meetings, newsletters, working smarter tips, or a staff magazine.
There are also many ways to make employees feel more engaged:
- Surprise employees with honest and fun content.
- Connect the communication to an activity or a small gift.
- Write a monthly newsletter with a combination of company info (not too much) and personal or user (employee) generated content.
- Send out a weekly personal mail with interesting facts from the management.
- Create a bi-monthly (digital) magazine about the world of the company, the customers and the employees.
- Organise a monthly chat with the CEO, linked to a theme; a (digital) coffee moment.
Internal Communication Plan Implementation and Evaluation
The implementation phase of any internal communication plan consists of:
- Incorporating cultural change in the plan.
- Designing the desired cultural change.
- Launching the changes via the channels.
- Analysing the results to measure these strategies (amount of employees opened the email, clicked on the link or participated in a quiz or poll).
- Adjusting channels, revising the content and key messaging.
In conclusion, providing employees with more actionable information, establishing an internal communications plan will bring organisations key benefits.
Secure Employer Value Proposition
Internal communications are critical when managing a company’s reputation, particularly when employees have more opportunities than ever to share their experience on social media and review sites like Glassdoor. Keeping employees informed about relevant internal news in a way that makes them feel heard and appreciated encourages them to view their employer considerate and invested in each employee’s success.
Improve Customer Experience
Businesses also need to concern themselves with how employees present their workplace to customers. When employees understand their purpose at the organisation and receive clear, respectful training and support, they are more likely to provide exceptional customer service that leaves a positive impression and helps grow the business.
Read more about the 10 Internal Communication Best Practices.