3 approaches to powering up your internal communications

As digital natives flood the modern workforce, delivering information and exchanging insights are crucial for engagement. Try these protocols to keep staffers in the loop and motivated.

When firing on all cylinders, an internal communications department creates understanding and breeds knowledge sharing across all areas of an organization.

It unifies departments and teams, leveling the playing field and ensuring that every employee—from the mailroom to the boardroom—has a voice and knows what’s going on.

As with any other department, internal communications must be proactively maintained. Tools and strategies must be updated as your organization and the world evolve.

Far too often, organizations leave this department in the Dark Ages and deprive it of the latest and greatest technologies.

Many companies still rely on antiquated, impersonal communication methods such as paper flyers, intranets and mass emails, and as a result, millions of employees of all shapes and sizes feel disconnected.

About three-quarters (74 percent) of today’s workers feel they’re missing out on some aspect of company information and news.

Employees who feel they’re being left outside the information loop eventually become disengaged, which creates a slew of costly problems for organizations: high attrition, low output and hundreds of billions of dollars in lost productivity every year.

Re-engaging internal communications

Don’t let disconnected employees waste your money and damage your bottom line.

Adopt the following three approaches to supercharge your internal communications and re-engage your staff:

1. Speak their language. Today’s workforce is mobile-first and full of digital natives. In their off hours, they communicate through SMS, IM, mobile video and snack-size content. Meet them where they are, and talk to them as they talk to one another. Employees keep getting the same old stuff-Word docs, PDFs and newsletters-and that is a one-way ticket to Snoresville. Go digital. Make employees’ phones buzz with content that aligns with the material they read in their free time. Surprise them with engaging listicles, short-form videos, GIFs and more.

2. Collaborate with other communicators. It’s likely that your external communicators already have a content strategy that generates engaging and easily shared material. Why not funnel those same objectives and results into a protocol for your internal communications staff? Collaborate to personalize content that your team will be excited to read and pass along. Adopt something similar to the 4-1-1 rule: a healthy mix of fresh company-created content, third-party resources and rah-rah announcements proclaiming, “Our company is amazing!”

3. Get tech-savvy. Provide your internal communication practitioners with the 21st-century technologies they deserve. Collaboration tools such as Slack, Jive and Yammer are redefining how employees interact-and savvy internal communicators will incorporate all the functionalities these collaboration tools offer. An employee advocacy platform is ideal for internal communications. It might be an app, such as Voicestorm from Dynamic Signal, that all employees have on their phones, making it a breeze for communicators to get the right information to the right people in a fast and engaging way.

Successful companies do more than just push out information; they communicate.

If you revamp your company’s internal communications, productivity will skyrocket, because time-sensitive messages will reach employees quickly and will be read promptly.

Furthermore, keeping your best talent connected to your mission and vision will inspire loyalty and a sense of community—which will ultimately increase retention.

Don’t allow your internal communications to limp along. Inject modernized, innovative energy into your strategy, and then watch your employees drive your company into the future.

A version of this article first appeared on Spin Sucks.

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