Tag Archives: internal communications

Half of firms ‘failing to monitor intranet engagement’

Measurement is big business in today’s internal communications industry.

And rightly so.

As modern day internal communicators, we have the tools to monitor the effectiveness of messaging, channels, tools and techniques.

Comms veteran Sean Williams pointed this out in a hugely popular blog post: “We need to make decisions based on facts and data, not conjecture and conventional wisdom. That takes research.”

Such an approach makes perfect sense.

In fact IC experts across the board seem eager to put more emphasis on strategy in employee communications.

With this in mind, the latest research emerging on intranet measurement is somewhat alarming.

The report, commissioned by the Intra.NET Reloaded London 2017 event, saw more than 200 organisations quizzed over intranet habits.

More than 80 per cent of respondents confirmed they use analytics to track user habits.

However less than half (38 per cent) actually report the findings on a monthly basis.

The remaining 62 per cent did it less frequently – with one in ten NEVER reporting any findings to senior leadership.

Other key findings include:

• 65 per cent of respondents established an intranet before 2010.

• SharePoint was the most popular platform – with almost half (48 per cent) opting for the Microsoft tool.

• Responsibility for the intranet launch sat firmly with IC professionals (39 per cent) followed by IT (29 per cent) and Marketing Comms (16 per cent).

• More than half (59 per cent) have a dedicated marketing budget specifically for the organisation’s intranet.

To read the full report, click here….

Improving internal comms ‘will help boost external marketing’

Perhaps internal comms and marketing professionals should start listening to Jack Johnson.

The popular US singer-songwriter, of course, enjoyed a 2006 smash with “Better Together”.

It’s a concept that today’s IC and marketing departments would do well to heed.

Marketing expert Scott Vaughan believes marketing teams need to look inwards first to boost their external offering.

Scott, who is the CMO of Integrate, a marketing technology software provider, wrote in this blog post: “While marketing teams rightly focus heavily on external customers and stakeholders, we’re missing an important audience in our mission; we must extend our focus to educating, inspiring and showcasing our work to key internal stakeholders.

“Ironically, marketing is notoriously bad at internal communications and collaboration. The storytelling component is often absent, and the data shared is sporadic.

“Neglecting to dedicate necessary time to involve other departments in marketing’s efforts greatly limits a company’s collective ability to delight customers and grow revenue.”

It’s not the first time experts have suggested marketers are too focused on external audiences – to the detriment of their own colleagues.

Research undertaken back in 2015 suggested “marketing teams need to concentrate on IC – to build engagement for their work within the rest of the workplace”.

So how can marketing and internal communications teams become more in sync?

Scott continued: “One of the best ways to get continuous or additional internal support required to help you execute your next big initiative is to dedicate some time to not just sharing results — awesome, average and even atrocious — but involving the key stakeholders in jointly setting the target KPIs and metrics.

“This means locking arms early in the process with peers who can help you move the needle. If they help set the target KPIs, there is ownership in helping you and your team hit them.

“Your internal communications efforts will help you improve your marketing results if applied diligently and consistently.

“Marketers’ trademark is storytelling, engaging audiences and getting them to act.

“There’s no time like right now to start applying those mad marketing skills – internally, as well as you do externally.”

To read the full blog, click here ….

Do you love where you work?

Loving where you work isn’t only good for you, it’s good for your employer, too – as it improves your productivity and performance.

That’s why Milton Keynes employee communications agency Headlines is backing a new Engage for Success group helping local business to foster a culture of #lovewhereyouwork.

Launched in May, the group is one of a number being established around the country through Engage for Success (EFS), a voluntary organisation backed by Government and major corporations, that aims to grow awareness about the power and potential of employee engagement.

Research by EFS points to staff turnover being reduced by 40%, absenteeism by 25% and productivity increased by 59% in companies with high levels of employee engagement.

Headlines’ Managing Editor Sue Kiddy has been involved with the national EFS movement since its inauguration at 10 Downing Street in 2011 and is one of the founder members of EFS MK. She said: “Employee engagement truly does have the power to change lives and working communities, and more and more organisations are recognising the benefits. EFS MK is about local people and organisations coming together to promote and share this in and around Milton Keynes.”

At the first EFS MK meeting in May, Engage for Success Executive Director Cathy Brown talked about the four enablers of engagement that apply in any scenario – wherever you are, whatever you do and whoever you’re engaging with. You can read more about these in this article written by Headlines’ Matt Johnson.

The next meeting is on 21 September, and if you’re interested in coming along or finding out more about the group, please contact Sue Kiddy.

Now in its 23rd year, Headlines is a specialist internal communications agency based in Milton Keynes. With clients that include some of the world’s best-known companies, the agency creates internal publications and other tools to help build a higher-performing culture through improved employee communication and engagement.

Find out more on the Headlines website.

Internal comms error blamed for car explosion

Internal communications is, quite rightly, regarded as a very serious business.

And on the odd occasion when IC goes badly wrong, the fallout can be difficult.

But rarely does an internal comms fail happen in such spectacular fashion that a car is blown up as a result.

Cumbria Police cited ‘an internal communications error’ as the reason why a controlled explosion was carried out on a ‘suspicious’ car.

Bomb squad officers carried out the explosion outside Workington police station in February after concerns were voiced about a Vauxhall Corsa parked outside.

However it turned out colleagues had parked the car outside the station after helping its owner, who had been taken ill.

The gaffe cost £2,000, according to BBC News. This includes repairs and recovery of the car, as well as overtime costs in connection with the incident.

A force spokesperson told BBC News with “information known at the time, appropriate action was taken with public safety prioritized.”
The forced intended to “ensure this does not happen again,” he said.

An IC fail can indeed have unintentional, not to mention serious, repercussions – just ask Vauxhall.

An IC faux pas saw news of the French car manufacturer PSA Group‘s £1.9 billion purchase of General Motors’ European unit, which includes Vauxhall, leak in the press.

However they had not told the staff involved – sparking anger among employees amid concerns over job security and pensions.

Poo-gate uni email shows need for careful internal comms

Internal communications never stay internal for too long – just ask Strathclyde University.

Disgusted chiefs at the Scottish university’s Technology and Innovation Centre fired off a terse email asking students and staff to stop poo-ing in bins and showers.

Of course, a telling-off over this type of revolting issue was never going to stay quiet for long.

And soon the university was busy apologising to academics for the contents of the ‘internal’ communication.

The Daily Record reports the science hub’s cleaning staff were deeply unhappy by the peculiar toiletry habits of some users.

The memo, which was addressed to “TIC occupants”, stated: “Given the incidence of people pooing in bins, showers and the likes – can I please remind all TIC occupants that the toilets have been provided for that specific purpose.

“All bodily fluids, solids and toilet paper must be disposed of down the toilet.

“While I appreciate that the TIC population is multi-cultural and different countries have different practices, here in the UK the accepted practice is to use only the WC.”

Yet the straight-to-the-point email – issued by the centre’s operations management team – did not go at all well with staff.

And with the email quickly finding its way into the hands of a gleeful press, the IC fail was obvious.

It is a myth that internal comms stay internal.

That’s why internal comms need to be carefully considered – particularly when dealing with tricky topics like poo in the shower or bin.

A Strathclyde University spokeswoman said: “We’ve apologised for any offence caused to colleagues.

“The email contained sentiments completely contrary to our institutional values and should not have been sent.

“It was recalled as soon as it came to our attention and we swiftly issued an apology to staff.”