Employee Magazine (Print)

Energy company’s publication tackles big issues without boring readers

Calgary-based Enbridge’s Link Magazine grabs top honors by combining elegant design and strong visuals with clear reporting and storytelling.

Every employee publication faces a Herculean task. It must cover serious and potentially boring news while offering features that engage and inspire employees.

This task has been made even more difficult in today’s attention-deficit-addled culture. How do you grab readers’ attention in a world drowning in information?

Enbridge manages to overcome this obstacle through its elegantly designed and written Link Magazine, which is delivered to 6,500 employees in Canada and the United States.

Five reasons why we chose it as the winner in the Best Employee Magazine category:

  • Design. The magazine is stunningly effective with its airy, imaginative, and reader-friendly design. An employee can easily page through Link, spot stories of interest, and read them quickly. Photos and illustrations are some of the best we’ve seen in a long time. And use of pullout quotes serves to break up longer stories and add a human voice.
  • Headlines, captions and summaries. Link Magazine’s use of display elements is consistently excellent. Most articles feature summaries that deliver the gist of the story. Take this summary from a feature on a pipeline project: “It has been called a game changer, a nation builder, a bold, gutsy undertaking of massive proportions. The Enbridge Gateway Pipelines Project represents the key that could unlock new economic reality—propelling Canada onto the world stage as a global energy superpower.”
  • Special sections. This is where Link Magazine really shines. In a special section devoted to the company’s $5.5 billion pipeline project, editors lay out the mammoth undertaking in simple, clear prose. One story, headlined, “Lightning Rod for Controversy,” reports candidly on opposition to the pipeline and explains how the company is addressing it. The section includes a sleeve containing a gorgeous map illustrating the pipeline’s 740-mile route.
  • Cover. So many employee publications waste their most important real estate: the magazine’s cover. Not so with Link Magazine. In the special issue devoted to the pipeline, editors display the catchiest facts and statistics over a bright red cover. Readers learn, for example, that “62,700 person-years of construction related employment” will go into the project.
  • Illustrations and photos. With a few exceptions, Link Magazine uses solid photography and beautiful sketches of employees to bring variety to its pages. Though the magazine includes a few photographic clichés—grip-and-grin shots and one photo of employees holding a gigantic check—even those photos are laid out by the designer with dramatic flair.

Overall, Link Magazine is a superb employee magazine in a category crowded with strong submissions

To view the winning work please click here.


View More Employee Communications Awards 2011 Winners.

Visit Ragan.com/Awards to learn more about awards opportunities.