Good businesses are built from the inside out. Why, therefore, do organisations spend so much on marketing to customers and so little on communicating with employees?
When budgets are squeezed, internal communications slump to the bottom of the to-do list. Even during boom times, many organisations neglect internal communication. This is shortsighted and, in the long run, is likely to hamper progress. Conversely, investing in internal communications is a smart move with many benefits. On this page, we’ll explore those benefits, and how an internal communications agency like Fabrik can help you gain them.
Employees, like customers, are savvier than they used to be, and expect a lot from the organisations that employ them. They, rightfully, want to be treated with respect and kept informed. The days of unflinching deference to the company and the executives who run it are long gone. This (positive) development puts pressure on the laggards: organisations that consider an annual letter from the CEO sufficient to tick the internal communications box. But offers great rewards for those that step up to the challenge.
Employees who feel valued and engaged are usually happier. And happiness levels affect the bottom line. One study found that happy employees are up to 20% more productive
than unhappy employees. Other results of good internal communication include:
Reduced staff turnover.
More, and more effective, collaboration.
A stronger sense of community.
A more open and transparent culture.
Resilience during change or crisis.
Who doesn’t want to see these kind of improvements in their organisation? But before you begin manically firing out newsletters and updates from the top brass, take a breath. Increasing your communications activity is likely to be a waste of energy unless you spend time listening to your employees first.
Internal communications should be guided by the needs of your employees. Only they can tell you what kind of improvements will help them do their jobs better. It’s not always easy to create the space in which honest feedback can be given and received. This is where an internal communication agency like Fabrik comes in. Our job is to help you create an open dialogue between departments so that everyone understands each other better. This is essential if you want to unite your workforce behind common goals.
It’s all very well espousing the benefits of internal communications. But who has time to dedicate to this type of project? And how do you ensure people at all levels of your organisation are on board? By working with an internal communications agency in London you can avoid placing an extra burden on already-busy HR and marketing teams. Our objective opinion, based on years’ of experience, cuts through company politics and allows you to reach consensus. And it needn’t be more expensive than doing the work in-house.
How can an internal communications agency help you?
Internal communications are often derided or, even worse, forgotten. But there is so much more to them than organising staff parties, and sending sporadic newsletters and updates from senior management. Good communication is the foundation of an effective working culture. It’s not just about improving the flow of information from the top down. It’s about encouraging dialogue in all directions and at all levels.
A good internal communications plan should be guided by these objectives:
Explain the company strategy.
Inspire with success stories.
Ask employees for their feedback.
Creating an environment in which employees feel valued, relevant, and empowered to ask questions and make suggestions requires work. In order to find out what daily working life is really like for your employees, you need an open mind and a willingness to hear difficult feedback. As an experienced London-based internal communications agency, we can help you carry out these investigations. Then, together, we can create an internal communication strategy that will transform the way you manage the flow of information in your organisation.
A major part of your internal communications strategy is choosing which channels to use. Consider your employees like a target customer demographic. Where and how do they like to receive their information? You need to use a range of methods so you can reach everyone.
A study showed that workers spend nearly 36% of their time searching for information
. Making the hunt for information easier could have a major impact on productivity.
At Fabrik, we help our clients plan and design their communications across all forms of digital and traditional media, including:
Company intranet. Your intranet needs to be user friendly, well organised, searchable, and regularly updated. You might want to: connect it to internal social media for quick and easy two-way communications; publish employee blogs for updates from the factory floor; or post regular messages from management.
Newsletters. A great platform for communicating important business news, and also sharing more lighthearted human stories. If you want people to read your newsletter, it has to be well designed with content based on the needs of your staff.
Emails. Probably the easiest way to reach a large number of people quickly. A very effective communications channel (when your messages are well planned and well written).
Video. The world is in love with video. It is one of the most engaging mediums, and a fantastic way to share important company updates or make presentations to investors.
Whatever channels you want to use, we draw on our record as an internal communications agency to apply thinking that is both strategic (focused on helping you achieve specific objectives) and creative (offering new ideas and challenging ineffective methods). Although we have tried and tested processes, we always tailor our approach to suit you.
If you hire our services, these are roughly the steps we’ll follow:
Scrutinise and, if necessary, develop the brief.
Identify and agree what success looks like.
Set a realistic deadline for completion of the project.
Develop an approval process for internal sign-off.
Identify the audience(s) and their specific needs.
Select the right communication tools for the job.
Launch the new internal communications programme.
Evaluate progress and make changes where necessary.
Strong relationships are built on trust
In any relationship, honesty is vital if you want to build trust. When organisations treat employees respectfully—keeping them updated, explaining developments clearly, responding promptly to requests for information—employees are more likely to be loyal. They may even share their positive experiences with the outside world, thus boosting the organisation’s reputation. When internal communications work well, people are not scared of getting things wrong and they feel comfortable asking for help.
Internal communications are not an independent entity. They exist alongside other forms of communication, chiefly your marketing. Fabrik can help you make sure your internal and external communications complement rather than contradict each other. The audience and tone for each set of communications may be different, but the company message should be consistent. Consistency is another critical aspect of building trust. Your internal communications project might need to stay true to existing branding. Or the project could form part of a brand revamp, or even a wholesale rebrand.
When embarking on a project like this, it’s important to remember one thing: you want to make your employees’ lives easier. We’re bombarded with information these days. Don’t add to the pile of unwanted clutter. Improving your internal communications could actually mean doing less, but doing it better.
Internal communications will never be as sexy as a major external marketing campaign
. That doesn’t mean their impact is not profound. We’ve spent nearly 10 years working across sectors—with corporates, financial services companies, education providers, non-profits and local government—proving time and again how organisations can gain when they put their mind to improving internal communications
Fabrik’s internal communication services:
- Staff engagement
- Planning & strategy
- Concept generation
- Creative development
- Messaging & copywriting
- Analysis & reporting
- Ongoing implementation
- Campaign management
Are you ready to talk about
Working hand-in-hand with a trusted partner, the process of reinvigorating your internal communications can even be enjoyable. We can help you bring departments together and formulate an internal communication plan everyone is happy with. Then create beautifully designed communications employees can’t help but notice.
Your employees are your most valuable asset. Make sure they feel valued. What are you waiting for?
Call us on
0044 (0)20 7336 1388
Fabrik is an internal communications agency in London. Our team of experienced strategists, writers, creatives and project managers deliver compelling internal communication solutions.