4 min read
Whether communicating to a workforce of three hundred, three thousand, or three hundred thousand, you need to make sure your message is wrapped in an exciting employee communication idea. Gone are the days when sending a memo around the office would grab your employees’ interest. You have so much competition when vying for the attention of your employees — emails from colleagues, retailers, publications flood inboxes by the minute and important information is easily lost amongst all of the 'advertising' that employees are bombarded with each day.
Now, you need your employee communications to pop. Your messages need to cut through everything else which will take the attention of your employees away.
Below, I’ve shared a few ideas which you can use to start thinking about how to make your employee communications more fun and impactful:
Put your people first
Every piece of employee communications we send out is as a chance to connect with people in the business and reinforce a positive culture, so don't be afraid to reach your people where they are.
We work with a mining company that has many FIFO employees. They publish a bi-monthly magazine that is sent directly to their employees' home address which includes information on the company benefits. The message goes right to the home and is seen by the family of the employee because the the company knows it's the employees' partner or family members who directly experiences the advantage of the employee discounts they offered. We think this is great communication for three reasons:
- It puts the information in front of the most relevant audience.
- It sends home a 'good news story' to the family and cements the company's Employee Value Proposition while promoting an inclusive, workplace culture.
- By putting employees — and their families — first, this company gets higher engagement on their corporate discounts program.
Find alternative employee communication channels
There’s a golden rule with employee communications of “repeat your message three times to make it stick.” Repetition alone can get a bit tedious – think of the toddler who constantly asks for the same thing – so the fun really comes in finding different ways you can deliver your message. At RG, we’re fortunate to have a CEO, Doug, who’s really connected to our business and each week, he writes a blog post to make announcements, share business results, and summarise his thoughts. Whilst Doug’s blog is well-read, it's a tough feat to gather 100% engagement each and every week.
Cue our video content. Ivana is part of our Internal Comms Team and has a weekly video segment on our own employee communications platform. Called “The Long Story Short,” it’s another employee communication idea which allows those who would rather watch a video than read a blog post to digest what’s happening in the business. Ivana also works in our Plovdiv office in Bulgaria, which is our biggest in the company, and having her as the face on our video content gives that area of the business a more familiar figure to relate to.
Lean into nostalgia
Another member of our Internal Comms Team who's a frequent blog contributor, Cat Lewis, was tasked with writing about why effective employee communications are important. And in a boundary pushing style true to effective employee communications, Catrin stayed away from writing a simple blog post – opting instead to write a fairytale.
Catrin’s reason for choosing a fairytale to tell the importance of good employee communication ideas was to make it a memorable experience by giving a feeling of nostalgia. More people were interested in reading the fairytale as it reminded them of their favourite stories from when they were little, and it helped get across a serious business message because it was more engaging. Think about your favourite fictional writer or journalist: you'll seek their new release on the bookstore shelves or open the paper to their column each week; you look forward not just to the news or story, but to the way it is delivered. You can check out Cat's presentation on her fairytale below:
Embrace new forms of technology
QR codes have had a mixed reception in recent years and have more or less fallen out of fashion now. In case you don't know what QR codes are, they’re the small boxes made up of black and white squares which you can scan with your smartphone’s camera. I’ve mainly recommended against them due to you needing to install an additional app to scan, and having an extra step in your employee communications will instantly put a barrier up for even the most engaged.
But recently, Facebook added a QR code scanning functionality to their Messenger app.
And with Messenger having 1.2 billion daily active users, it’s highly likely that a large amount of your workforce do too.
With this in mind, we put a QR code on posters which clients used to promote our employee discounts app to their workforce. Employees would scan the QR code through Messenger and a simple, friendly chatbot would guide them through how to install the employee discount app, depending on their chosen smartphone. This bot can also be set up to send reminders, and triggers if there is a certain seasonal message, engaging your employee on a format that is completely familiar to them.
And now, over to you...
These are only a few examples of the ways in which we and our clients are on a quest to make their employee communications more fun, and the best thing you can do is make sure you capture the personality of your business when you’re communicating with your people.
You know your workforce better than anyone else and know what makes them tick. Tap into that, tailor your communication ideas to it, sprinkle your personal touch, and you’ll be onto a winner.
If you’d like to talk about employee communication ideas or employee engagement in general, please, get in touch with me and I’ll see how I can help.