COVID-19 has overturned old, musty notions about how business must be conducted.
Communicators have been front and center during this period of transformation, leading the charge into the unknown. Now, we all must come to grips with what’s next.
To determine what’s around the corner, communicators should consider:
- What’s worked well since the pandemic took hold, and what’s hindered your efforts?
- What key areas merit investment and energy moving forward?
- Which trends will rise or fall in the coming months?
- And, perhaps most important, how can you keep employees feeling motivated, engaged and upbeat amid ongoing uncertainty?
To help answer these burning questions, we held a webinar that unveils findings from ContactMonkey’s recent Global State of Internal Communications Survey.
In this webinar you’ll unearth a trove of helpful tips, and you’ll receive real-world guidance from Tammie Dodson, senior manager of corporate communications at ADTRAN, along with insights from Maithili Jha, senior digital marketing manager with ContactMonkey.
During this webinar, you’ll discover:
- Key trends shaping internal communications in 2021
- Top goals and challenges of internal communicators
- Most valuable tools and technology for employee communication
- Leadership approaches and strategy for internal communications
- Guidance regarding internal comms budgets and KPIs
- How to maximize your workplace in a post-pandemic environment
- Real-life examples and anecdotes from a fellow internal communicator
Top trends to monitor
What’s top-of-mind for comms pros right now? According to ContactMonkey’s data, there are four issues in particular that are keeping people up at night:
- Employee experience
- Remote work
- Future of work
- Workplace diversity
However, a swath of respondents also voiced concerns about new tech adoption, soliciting meaningful feedback and engaging Gen Z workers.
Dodson says the fallout of managing and maximizing remote work has been a key trend for her team. She says Adtran was not traditionally a remote work friendly environment, but now many workers will either be fully remote or hybrid moving forward. She says a shift of that nature requires a delicate touch—and no small amount of listening to what employees need to stay connected and motivated to do their best work.
Dodson emphasizes the need for comms pros to use messaging to help employees understand the business they’re contributing to. Consistent messaging is crucial, too. She says the best thing to do for morale is to “make sure they’re informed, keep them in the loop,” adding that, “Happy employees tend to stay.”
Biggest challenges, goals and tactics
What are comms pros prioritizing these days?
When asked what “adds the most value” to their work, respondents said:
- Templates and practical resources
Podcasts, best practice listicles and E-books might seem popular options, but those three formats came in last.
As for what kind of newsletters or messages communicators are leaning on most heavily right now, these were the most popular selections:
- Important updates
- Company events
- CEO announcements
Voted as least important were annual newsletters, new hire announcements, and holiday themes. This tracks with a broader trend of communicators scraping ancillary jobs off their plates in favor of more urgent tasks that tie to larger business goals.
Speaking of goals, the top five internal comms objectives respondents listed are:
- Higher employee satisfaction
- Culture change
- Increased participation and engagement
- Improved productivity
- Lower attrition
Meanwhile, the top five internal comms challenges were:
- Low employee feedback and response
- Tracking and measuring internal comms
- Engaging remote employees
- Inter-departmental comms
- Getting budget and approvals
Followed by the biggest barriers to remote work:
- Lack of human interaction (51%)
- Overworking (33%)
- Communication issues (32%)
To overcome some of these communication obstacles, Dodson says Adtran segments its internal audience to target specific niche groups of employees. She uses ContactMonkey templates to streamline email messaging quickly, and the analytics suite to monitor data such as clickthrough rates. She can see who’s clicking when and on what device they’re reading, which helps her tweak tactics as necessary.
Regardless of how you proceed, it’s safe to say that communicators should prioritize flexibility, empathy and understanding moving forward. That’s the first line of defense—and success—in a post-pandemic workplace.
Access the full webinar to get more insights into ContactMonkey’s 2021 Global State of Internal Comms takeaways.