How do you measure internal communications?

How to Measure Internal Comms

You sent a message to thousands of employees with a critical announcement. How many people actually read the message? 

You asked managers to let employees know about a change in policy. Did your managers actually inform your workforce?

You posted the open enrollment schedule and details in every break room. How many people actually saw the posters? 

If you work in internal communications, these are struggles you are intimately familiar with. Many IC methods, particularly those used with an hourly or non-desk workforce, are extremely difficult if not impossible to measure. Yet, communicators are facing more pressure than ever to measure their efforts. 

I spoke at last week’s Ragan conference that was focused entirely on Internal Communications Measurement. An impressive lineup of industry thought-leaders and IC professionals shared best practices for measurement, as well as the “why” behind measurement. 

Importance of measurement

Jim Yisela opened the conference with great ideas and reminders for everyone who works in communications. Here are a few highlights from his presentation: 

  • As a communicator, your employees are the most important audience you have, as they have the most direct impact on your business.
  • Leaders always tend to think their communication is great; employees think otherwise.
  • Organizational changes create opportunities for communicators; when employees are nervous or worried, that’s a great time to connect with them.
  • You can’t afford to be boring.

A 100% digital strategy

Later in the day, Becky Graebe, senior manager of internal communications at SAS, shared her strategy for communicating with a global workforce. Her IC strategy is 100% digital. At SAS, they avoid printing any communications and instead use an array of digital products to communicate with 14,000 employees.

Becky encouraged communicators to read their own internal messages to determine how much time they’re asking employees to spend on communications each week. After doing her own audit, Becky was shocked to realize that they were asking employees to spend more than half of a work day each week reading communications.

What does measurement empower you to do?

Steve Crescenzo concluded the day with a presentation focused on next steps. If you’re able to effectively measure your internal comms, what does measurement empower you to do? Here are a few of my favorite sound bytes from his presentation: 

  • Communicators who measure with excellence are more effective, they’re taken more seriously, they have more fun, and they drive engagement.
  • All communicators are short on time and power/authority; measuring your internal comms gives you more of both.
  • Ditch your corporate words; use your weekend words.
Sample Red e App Report
Sample Red e App Report

Measuring internal comms is a crucial step in making your communications better and driving employee engagement. Seth Godin famously said, “What you measure usually gets paid attention to, and what you pay attention to usually gets better.”

At Red e App, we pride ourselves in providing companies with unique mobile tools to measure internal comms like never before.

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