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Internal Communications Trends for 2020: mobile, advocacy & data

2020 Internal Communications Trends: mobile, advocacy & data

At a time of widespread corporate change, internal communications plays a critical role in improving organisational engagement. It is the lifeblood of any successful organisation. For employees, it creates an understanding of their place within the company structure and how their individual contributions help it thrive, and for those in management, it is the function by which they disseminate company goals, values, and culture.

Today workforces are often spread across different geographical areas, and with a steady rise in agile and remote working, establishing consistent and reliable internal communications is more pertinent than ever.

As technology updates and evolves, businesses need to be comfortable embracing modern digital media and innovative approaches to internal communications if they want to unlock the benefits.

So, how will the changing employee engagement landscape look in the coming months? Here are our predictions for 2020…

Mobile-first communication

The proliferation of mobile-technology – the tools, apps and social channels we use every day – has had a lasting impact on the way we interact online. It is predicted that in 2020, the global workforce will be dominated by millennials (35%) and generation X (35%), with baby boomers only making up 6%. These younger generations are digitally-savvy and as a result, the way in which companies distribute information has already undergone a fundamental shift.

More organisations are embracing mobile technology to connect with their staff. Rather than sending company-wide emails or relying on intranets, companies are sending important updates and staff announcements directly to employees’ smartphones, making them accessible at any time.  

We are also seeing an emergence of customisable, integrated apps specifically designed to facilitate internal communications in a corporate setting. Platforms that are stimulating and informative in equal measure; their purpose to raise brand awareness, boost loyalty, and bring potentially disconnected workforces together.

Advocacy and blurred lines

One of the major knock-on effects of this increased use of mobile is the blurring lines of internal and external communications. Social platforms have eroded many of these divides, and one of the central trends for 2020 and beyond is employee advocacy on social media.  

People on the front line have become visual storytellers and unofficial brand ambassadors. Whether it’s sharing interesting thought-leadership pieces or posting photos from team get-togethers, content is used to give people a unique perspective on life within an organisation, including its values, culture and workplace environment.

This means there can no longer be one-way communication – businesses must embrace the power of social networks and fully engage in online conversations. With an effective employee advocacy program, a company can: build authenticity; enhance employee engagement and company culture; piggyback on organic content; and develop thought-leaders and influencers.

The devil is in the data…

With an array of technology at our disposal, the volume of data available to modern businesses is vast. However, beyond basic metrics like open rates, many businesses are failing to take advantage of the true potential of this data. Data can now give companies insights into sentiment and behaviour, including:

  • Preferred methods of communication
  • Time on page
  • Click-throughs
  • Demographics of workforce
  • How individual employees feel about their role within the company

All of this information can be used to inform internal communications teams and improve employee engagement.

 

How can we help?

If you would like to have a conversation about hiring internal communications talent for your business, your next career move, or have a general chat about the market, please do get in touch.

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Author: Jenny Waters

Jenny specialises in the corporate communications space at Hanson Search, working in partnership with global agencies and in-house clients. She is also Co-Chairman of the PRCA NextGen London Group, a forum providing support and advice to communications professionals.

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