7 Surprising Stats That Show the Importance of Internal Communications
You know internal communications are important to your company’s success, but do you know how important? You may be surprised by just how much internal communications can affect your company’s morale, productivity, and even revenue.
Strong communications are the lifeblood of any company’s success. We’ve put together some numbers to help demonstrate. We also added some takeaways and ideas that may help elevate your company’s culture!
1.) Most North American employees are not engaged at work.
A poll we found by Gallup showed that 70% of employees are not engaged at work. That’s a startling figure. Obviously there could be catastrophic implications for companies without proper internal communication practices in place.
Luckily, there are plenty of opportunities for companies to bolster engagement through effective communication channels.
You can begin by initiating conversations with employees one-on-one and opening up anonymous feedback channels (try surveys using SurveyMonkey) to see what, if anything, is making your employees feel disengaged.
Try not to bombard your employees with 60-question surveys, simply ask thoughtful, open-ended questions, and ask them often. From there, you can begin to research various internal communication methods to see what might improve morale.
Takeaway: Provide a platform for collective and individual voices to be heard.
2.) Employees who are connected with one another are more productive.
The McKinsey Global Institute found that productivity improves by 20-25% in organizations with connected employees. Those numbers can’t be ignored. Imagine the potential that level of increased productivity would have on your revenues each year.
Now would be a good time to ask, what is helping or hindering my employees’ productivity? It could make the difference between flat sales and skyrocketing success.
Start by taking a look at your “we’ve always done it this way” practices. Maybe you are relying too much on email and bogging down your team’s inboxes? Forced participation in an intranet that no one likes isn’t getting you anywhere either. Perhaps you can look enterprise social networks like Slack for a streamlined, efficient means of team communication.
Set goals for any new methods you try. For example, use Slack to communicate simple messages and decrease the amount of unnecessary emails sent by 30%. That’s a goal everyone can get behind. Decide as a team and measure your company’s success at achieving it.
Takeaway: Revenue is directly linked to employee engagement, so communication tools are worth investing in.
3.) Intranet participation is at an all-time low.
In a survey by Prescient Digital Media, only 13% of employees reported participating in their intranet daily—31% said they never use it.
Look over your organization, if your findings yield similar results, consider whether an intranet is something your company really needs. If it is, what can you do to make it more valuable?
First and foremost, an intranet should provide resources that make your employees’ jobs easier. Maybe there aren’t enough high-quality resources embedded, or maybe the interface is confusing and time consuming to navigate.
Gathering feedback from your team may shed some light on why there’s so little use. The user’s perspective on this is critical. There may be some obvious alternatives.
Takeaway: Internal communication isn’t really internal communication if no one’s actually communicating. Don’t push tools your employees won’t use.
4.) Most communicators admit to using too much jargon.
Are you guilty of littering your emails, reports or other forms of communication with too much jargon? Or are your messages unnecessarily long? IABC reports that only 21% of communicators say they keep their language simple and jargon-free.
Pause before hitting send and consider the medium. Is it appropriate for the message you want to convey? If you’re not sure, weigh your message against the company’s core mission and values for alignment.
Remember, employees’ productivity is directly tied to your company’s revenue. If a message isn’t a good use of your time to send or your team’s to read, reconsider. All good writing is the result of ruthless editing. Cut the fluff and leave the rest.
Takeaway: Employees will perform better when messages are concise.
5.) Communication professionals are eager to incorporate creativity into the workplace, but don’t know how.
93% of communication professionals say creativity is important in internal communication, but only 6% think it’s used to its full potential; according to a study by Alive With Ideas. The fact that so many pros think creativity is essential to internal communications is good, but most of them, it seems, are missing the huge opportunity to actually be creative.
There are simple ways to integrate creativity into your company culture, here are a few ideas:
- Go for walking meetings
- Hold monthly team events
- Spark a friendly competition with non-work related tasks
- Use digital signage to announce events, display your company blog or show employees’ Instagram posts
You don’t have to be an artist or spend a ton of money to get creative, just try new things and pay attention to the effect they have.
Takeaway: Experiment with different methods and tap into your teams’ perspective for inspiration. They’ll probably have some interesting ideas!
6.) Employees need to feel appreciated and recognized for their hard work.
Birthdays, work anniversaries and accomplishments (big and small) are important things to recognize, especially as your company grows and news doesn’t reach everyone quite so easily.
Acknowledging good work is particularly essential to making employees feel like their work matters. 69% of employees say they’d work harder if they knew they were appreciated and recognized, Globoforce found.
Don’t just tell employees their work matters, show them. By making a small investment and rewarding employees in a meaningful way, you’ll may inspire loyalty and boost progress. A bonus goes a long way, however sincere efforts really matter. Something as simple as a handwritten note or gift card can go a long way.
No matter what you choose, increasing the amount of vertical communication within your team can have a powerful effect in creating a more collaborative and transparent atmosphere.
Takeaway: A thank you can go a long way in retaining employees and fostering good morale.
7.) Many internal communicators are still not measuring internal communication.
As much as 60% in fact, according to IABC. If you fall into this group, the first six points listed here should be enough to convince you to measure your internal communication methods. Here are few possible ways to start:
If you use an intranet…
- Look at unique user logins to measure participation
- Analyze peak times to see when the best time to post announcements is
If you’re conducting surveys...
- Look at survey participation to see if they’re effective
- Look for patterns and common feedback. What do you hear most frequently?
You can also look at operational and customer measurements or implementations. Has productivity increased since you implemented a new method? Has customer satisfaction increased with a new initiative? You can use both formal and informal methods to measure depending on your organization’s size and needs.
The numbers are impossible to ignore. Internal communication is far too valuable to be left to chance. Simple surveys, measuring and analyzing the methods you have in place and listening to your team will help you develop a solid plan.
You measure your sales and marketing metrics, why wouldn’t you do the same for a practice that will enhance your company’s culture and define its success?
Takeaway: You should start measuring your internal communication, yesterday.
About Openhwy Digital Signage Software
Openhwy digital signage makes it simple for businesses to create and share compelling visual content for their marketing and employee communications. Our software powers content on TVs Canada-wide with news feeds, social media walls, sports scores, employee recognitions, corporate KPIs, graphics and videos. Openhwy was founded in 2012 in Red Deer, Alberta.