Developing an Internal Communications Strategy: Expert Tips

Read time: 13 min
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Developing an Internal Communications Strategy: Expert Tips
Try Publicate For Free Today
Read time: 13 min

Interested in developing an internal communications strategy? There are many reasons why organizations take the time to do so. Internal communications strategies impact employee engagement and can be a game changing in boosting retention and promoting a productive workforce. 

In this article, we will look at internal communications strategy best practices and discover the types of internal communication that exists. 

Let’s get into it. 

What is an Internal Communications Strategy Plan?

An internal communications strategy plan will serve to outline your business’ goals with regard to employee communications. Along with setting goals, it describes the means by which you can achieve your communication goals. 

An internal communications strategy plan explains how departments and teams can and should communicate with one another in an effort to achieve organizational goals. 

Why Improve Your Internal Communication Strategy?         

When you have so many things to focus on in your business, you may wonder why an internal communication strategy should be at the top of the list. It’s a fair question, but once you see the benefits, it makes sense. 

An internal communication strategy impacts productivity, retention, engagement, satisfaction, and ultimately, the bottom line. 

When employees spend time looking for information that they need, they are effectively wasting time. If they don’t feel like they know the overall goals of the company, how can they contribute to their highest potential? Having clear communications makes it easier for employees to do their jobs well and service customers as best as possible. 

It also can help to alleviate stress, worry, and anxiety, which are all emotions that can lead to absenteeism or turnover.

What are the Steps to Improve Your Internal Communications Strategy?   

Here are the steps you can follow to improve your internal communications strategy:

1. Assess Current Communications Strategy 

Take stock of what you are currently using for internal communications. How effective are your communications? Where do you want to make changes and why? What’s the plan to get there and how long should it take? 

2. Set Timelines

Once you have your internal communications strategy goals set, you have to figure out a realistic timeframe to implement it. You can involve employees in this process to get a sense of what kind of improvements they may want to see. 

Keep in mind the idea of SMART goals, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time-based. 

For example, if you have been sending out quarterly employee newsletters, you may have had a hard time deciding what information is worthy of sharing. 

The newsletters may consist of a lot of information because you’ve been sending them scarcely. Instead, you can find a time-sensitive solution like weekly or monthly company updates with the aid of a web-based email builder. 

This way, you can leverage pre-built templates and drag-and-drop functionality to design, test, and send internal communication newsletters more frequently and with less hassle. No need for designers or coders and easy to export to send on your preferred email platform.

3. Define and Track Metrics

To gauge the changes you’re implementing, you’ll need to be able to track metrics. With metrics, you can evaluate whether or not your strategy is working. You can utilize metrics like the amount of social shares or comments (when using social media for internal communications), open rates/click-through rates (when sending email newsletters), etc. 

With an html email builder, you will automatically benefit from being able to access real-time analytics to understand employee engagement. 

4. Segment Your Audience 

Chances are high that you have internal communications that are relevant for some of your workforce and not every department. When this is the case, it only makes sense to send information to the people who need it. 

Make use of audience segmentation so that you don’t bog down employees with news or communications that are irrelevant for them. 

5. Leverage Technology

There is an array of internal communications tools that can help you to achieve your internal communications strategy. For example, you can take advantage of internal messaging tools like Slack. Such a tool is wonderful for instant communication and collaboration between teams on a specific project. 

You can choose to use email builders like Publicate that allow you to design beautiful and professional emails without the need for a graphic designer or coder. Plus, you have analytics at your fingertips to assess employee engagement. 

Depending on what you want to share and when, you can find the right software to get your messages across in a mode that works well for everyone. 

6. Continuously Improve 

As you make enhancements and implement new tools within your organization, take the time to evaluate progress. Ask your employees for feedback through pulse surveys and/or routine check-ins. By reevaluating your communications strategy, you may find areas that can be optimized. 

What are Best Practices for Internal Communication?   

An internal communication plan should be about providing employees with the information they need to perform at their highest potential and remain motivated. Organizations that develop a plan with the notion of having communications be a two-way street are able to promote a company culture that is transparent and aligned. 

With the knowledge of how to create or improve your internal communication strategy, it’s time to talk about internal communications strategy best practices. 

Consider the following:

1. Engage with Your Audience Regularly 

Internal communications shouldn’t happen once in a blue moon. In fact, communication within your organization takes place on the daily in different ways to ensure that processes flow smoothly. In the same vein, management teams and leadership should be involved with employees regularly via internal communications. 

With the rise of remote or hybrid working, digital communication tools are most effective to keep up with your audience. You can use instant messaging channels, intranet, internal blogs, company email newsletters, and more. 

2. Address Managers First 

If you’re making big changes that affect the organization as a whole or specific teams, it’s always best to share the news with managers first. This way, when the rest of the employees receive the update, managers are prepared with answers and the knowledge they need to address employees’ concerns. 

3. Involve Employees

Consider the follJust like word of mouth is one of the most effective marketing tactics, employees can become brand and communications advocates on behalf of the company. owing:

Empower your employers to further amplify and spread messages with one another, and in some cases, customers, too. Adding this peer-to-peer dynamic to your internal communications strategy can make a large and positive difference. 

4. Correlate Messages, Audience, and Means 

Depending on what type of message you are sending, you need to be cognizant of the delivery method and audience always. In practice, this will be one of the first things you will address when developing an internal communications strategy. 

For example, mass and time-sensitive messages can be delivered via email newsletters. On the other hand, evergreen content may be best to post on the company blog or in the newsfeed on your intranet. 

For guidelines and process updates, you can host a video training meeting and provide resources in-hand. 

Colleagues at table with laptop and mobile phone

Picture source Pexels

Closing Thoughts

The process of developing an internal communications strategy often looks similar for various types of businesses. You will need to be prepared to assess your current communications strategy, define your goals and choose the tools to execute your strategy. 

Regardless of how your internal communications strategy plan pans out, you can undoubtedly make use of internal communications tools like web-based html email builders, instant messaging tools, intranet, and more.