Measuring internal communication in your organization is one of those details that is so often overlooked, but is crucial to keeping a company running as smoothly and efficiently as possible. This has become even more important with so much of the modern workforce no longer working at a desk.
However, communicators often have a hard time putting into words (or numbers) exactly how engaged and informed their employees and coworkers are, which can lead to efforts being wasted with unproductive programs and other fruitless endeavors.
So how do you effectively measure internal communication?
4 easy ways to measure are:
- Opens and Click Through Rates
- Track Shares
- Logins and Page Views
Opens and Click Through Rates
One of the cornerstones of digital marketing, measuring the open rates and click through rates of your communication is an effective way to gauge employee awareness of company news. Simply put, these metrics measure how often your content is opened, and links are clicked. You can also go deeper into the data, and see at which times employees are more apt to view your communications, whether it be push alerts, urgent posts, or emails, and what titles and content drive the most clicks. This can help you plan future announcements and other pieces of important internal and communication.
It is not only important to measure how aware your employees are of internal communications, but also how engaged and interested they are. Measuring the number of times approved content has been shared, either between coworkers or through social media, can give you an idea of how effective your methods of disseminating information among your employees are. Low share rates can indicate a disconnected and uninvolved workforce, which lowers productivity and morale.
Social media shares can have an especially strong impact on your company. When employees are encouraged to be involved in social media, and share and respond to company postings and news, it fosters an atmosphere of trust and communication which leads to greater employee engagement and, ultimately, productivity.
The metrics to measure will differ between social platforms, and each platform will offer different benefits. For example. Facebook has a user base of nearly 2 billion, making it the most used social media site in the world. However, it is used very differently than Twitter, which has a fraction of the users
Twitter messages, or “tweets”, tend to be shared, or “retweeted”, faster than Facebook posts. Each “retweet” indicates that a user thought that a particular post was interesting enough to be shared with their followers. Because each tweet is limited to 280 characters, and users tend to be more engaged with the platform, information can quickly spread amongst your organization’s employees, followers, and your employee’s followers. This makes it the perfect medium to announce breaking news, or even for urgent communications or announcements.
Facebook, unlike Twitter, doesn’t have the character limit on postings and offers a wider variety of posts and user reactions. Beside text, Facebook also offers the ability to share pictures and videos, and user reactions can range from “like” to “angry”, which gives you greater insights into your company’s image than a simple retweet would. Facebook posts tend to be shared much more slowly, however, and have lower engagement numbers than Twitter.
Logins, Page Views, and Sessions Across Different Communication Channels
Another great metric that measures how involved and engaged your employees are is the number of logins and sessions across all methods of communication. The intranet is no longer the sole source of information and sharing for employees. Other, more worker-friendly methods-such as mobile apps are becoming more and more important. Each of these, when measured together, can paint a clearer and more in-depth picture of what your employees are thinking, as well as a general mood of the company.
Logins can offer up insight into how well your communication plan is working by indicating how involved your employees are, and how often they seek out information. Or, you can drill down deeper and track other metrics, such as the number of and length of user sessions. If your company uses video to communicate with employees, such as a monthly address by an executive, video views, and how much of the video was viewed, can be tracked as well.
All of this data can be combined and analyzed to prepare a powerful report showing how well current efforts are at connecting with your workforce. Take your company’s intranet, for example. If time on page is low, and the number of page views are high, perhaps information isn’t being presented in a clear manner and employees are having a hard time finding answers. Or, if video views drop off dramatically at a certain time, perhaps videos should be shorter, with more important information at the beginning of the video. The number of logins to other methods of communication, such as a mobile app, can tell you if your company is putting out relevant and timely updates that employees truly care about.
Lastly, and probably the most (mis)used way is to issue company-wide surveys.
Going straight to the source – the employees – seems like the best way to go about it. However, companies often use a “shotgun” approach to surveys and send them out to the entire workforce and hope for accurate and actionable information. This could cause issues because not every problem is going to affect every employee, and frequent surveys can do a better job of distracting and annoying employees than gaining meaningful insights
The key to a successful survey is to segment your audience and send customized surveys to each. One set of surveys to the executives, one set to HR, one set to support staff etc. This way you gain valuable insights from the right audience, versus deluded results stemming from a blanket questionnaire to employees that should never have been surveyed in the first place.
Where To Go From Here
Now that you have the methods to measure internal communication in your organization, what do you do with the information?
Your team can establish KPIs and S.M.A.R.T (specific, measurable, achievable, results-focused and time-bound) goals to get real, measurable results you can gather into a report and demonstrate exactly how your efforts are helping the company.