We’re in the middle of the Great Resignation where employees are leaving their jobs at record rates. According to data from the US Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 24 million Americans left their jobs during the second half of 2021—and according to recent data from careerarc, nearly 1 in 4 employees in the United States are planning to leave their job in the next 12 months.
In today’s hypercompetitive labor market, it’s more important than ever for employers to do everything that they can to improve employee experience—and that includes fostering effective internal communication within your company.
But if your current internal communication strategy isn’t as effective as you’d like it to be, it can be hard to know where to start. How can you foster better communications within your organization—and empower your team’s best work in the process?
Let’s take a look at three key steps to take to improve internal communication within your organization:
Audit your current internal communication and identify areas for improvement
You can’t improve internal communication in your company if you don’t know what, exactly, needs to be improved. Which is why the very first step to improving communication within your organization? Auditing the current state of your internal communication—and identifying what areas could stand to be adjusted, overhauled, and improved.
Take a look at how your company is managing internal communication at the moment. While a communications audit will vary from organization to organization, some questions you may want to ask include:
- What platforms do our employees use to communicate? (For example, email, chat apps, etc.)
- How does our organization disseminate important information?
- How does our organization handle sharing sensitive information? (For example, if an employee needs to share sensitive customer data with another team, what processes are in place to ensure that information sharing is secure?)
- What tools do we have in place to facilitate internal communication?
- What are some internal communication challenges our company has faced in the past 12 months?
Once you have a clear understanding of where your company currently stands, you can identify areas that could be improved. For example, if your employees are using multiple mediums to communicate—and it’s causing confusion around the best way to connect with their colleagues—you might want to improve that process by streamlining communications to a single platform. If, after your audit, you realize that you have no fast, effective way to share important news across your company, you might look to invest in a tool that makes it easy to share information organization-wide.
You can’t figure out how to improve internal communication in your company until you know what needs to be improved—so make sure, before you do anything else, you identify those areas for improvement by performing a thorough internal communication audit.
Ask your team what they’d like to see improve
An internal communication audit will give you a clear picture of how communications are currently managed within your company—which will then help you identify areas you’d like to see improve.
And that’s a great first step. But if you really want to improve internal communication within your company, it’s not enough to tackle what you think needs to be improved. You also need to get insights from the people your internal communication plan will impact the most—your employees.
Schedule individual or team meetings or send out employee surveys and ask your employees for feedback about your current internal communication processes—what’s working for them, what’s not working for them, and what they’d like to see improved. Then, take that feedback and use it to drive your internal communication strategy moving forward.
For example, let’s say, after surveying your team, you find out the majority of your employees don’t know what to do if they have information or news they need to share outside of their immediate team or closest co-workers. In that situation, you could take that feedback and use it to develop clearer processes for sharing information—then get a tool that can help to better facilitate that process (like Talkspirit, an internal communication tool which integrates a homepage and a news feed that make it easier for users to share information with their team and across their organization).
Bottom line? The ultimate reason you’re improving your internal communication strategy is to better support your team—so make sure you involve them in the process and ask them for their feedback on what they’d like to see improved.
Clearly define your internal communication strategy—and train your team on that strategy
Once you’ve identified which elements of your internal communication you’d like to improve, it’s time to define how you’re going to implement those improvements across your organization—or, in other words, create your internal communication strategy.
Your internal communication strategy should clearly outline the policies, procedures, and processes you’re planning to implement to improve internal communication in your company. It should also outline any new tools you plan to add to your company’s tech stack in order to facilitate better internal communication—as well as how both leadership and employees should use those tools to communicate.
Clearly defining your internal communication strategy is the first part of the process. But if you want your team to successfully adopt that strategy, you need to make sure everyone is on the same page and understands what changes are about to go into effect—which means training your team on your strategy.
There are a variety of ways you may want to explore training your team. For example, you might hold an all-hands meeting to review your new strategy—then have managers break off with their teams to answer any questions. Or, if you’re investing in a new internal communication tool, you might have your employees meet with an onboarding specialist to help them get acquainted with the tool and how to use it in their day-to-day workflow.
The point is, if you want to successfully improve internal communication within your organization, you’ll need to invest the time, energy, and resources into ensuring your team understands your new strategy and how it will impact them, their work, and how they communicate with their co-workers.
Use these tips to improve internal communication in your organization
An effective internal communication strategy is a must for any successful company. And now that you know the steps to take to improve internal communication within your organization, you have everything you need to empower better communication across your team—and take your company to the next level in the process.
Defining a clear strategy is essential is essential for improving internal communication in your company. But it’s not the only way! Choosing the right tool is also very important. Check out our list of the best software for internal communication to make your choice: