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Why Your Internal Communication Isn't Working (and What You Can Do About It)

By Asif Rehmani
Updated February 12, 2024

How often do your team members ask you questions about information you have shared with them via email?

If you find that your team members are not reading the messages you send, you're not alone:

A recent study found that 82% of employees feel that they sometimes, often, or very often miss emails because their inbox is too cluttered (Inbox Intelligent Report).

Often, it is in trying to communicate everything important that companies end up over-communicating, prompting employees to develop the habit of ignoring emails.

Internal Communication Statistics

And unfortunately, most companies don't have alternative communication channels through which to reach employees.

Which means that important internal communication gets lost.

What Can You Do When Your Email Is No Longer Working?

Ensuring that you have a clear internal communication plan is vital. Companies with clear communication plans are 3.5 times more likely to outperform their competition.

Here are some strategies to improve your internal communication:

1. Consolidate & Clarify Communication Channels

Employees are faced with many places to send & receive internal communication: email, chat, project management system, etc. Since they are constantly faced with where to go for what purpose, it helps to consolidate and clarify the purpose of each communication channel.

For example, chat tools such as Microsoft Teams could be used only for urgent questions or notifications.

Project management platforms can be used when discussing topics within the context of a project.

Once you have identified which tools you will use and the purpose of each tool, you'll want to be crystal clear in relaying that to your teams.

Most importantly: they will need to know exactly where to go to hear important information from you.

2. Consolidate Internal Communication with In-Context Messaging

As you are consolidating your internal communication tools, you may want to consider utilizing an in-context messaging and alerts tool. This is an effective way to communicate without email.

By having messages and alerts appear in the context of an employee's work environment, they are more likely to read them. You can even prevent them from proceeding until they have read the messages.

You can use a plug-and-play add-on application, such as VisualSP (click here to try it out), to deliver and display messages on specific windows, workspaces, and pages of software applications.

Use In-app Messaging to improve internal communication

As a digital adoption platform, VisualSP allows you to overlay your message as a popup, a splash screen, a banner, or an auto-display window over the most visited welcome pages of applications such as Outlook, SharePoint, OneDrive for Business, Word, Excel, and any web application.

Alerts and Notifications for internal communication

Here's a real-world example of this in action: Culver City was struggling with meeting attendance. Employees weren't getting the messages and were therefore missing meetings. The company started doing in-app banner announcements of these meetings so that employees saw them while working in any Microsoft 365 products. As a result, meeting attendance went from just a couple of people to over 40.

Here are some more examples of how you could use an in-context support tool to improve internal communication:

  • You can overlay a popup message on their Outlook inbox workspace so that it can be the first item they see before they open their emails.
  • You can add a splash screen over a SharePoint intranet homepage for their colleagues to see the second they open the site.
  • You can place a banner at the top of Dynamics 365 for teams to see the moment they log in

Many companies use VisualSP to continually educate SharePoint and Office 365 users about governance policies, regulatory compliance, and best practices.

As an admin or team leader, you can also use VisualSP analytics to see exactly who has seen the message and when.

With in-context messaging, you can deliver a considerable number of messages without overwhelming your colleagues.

3. Make It Easy for Team Members to Find Important Information

In addition to consolidating your internal communication tools, you'll also want to provide a primary location for important information.

For example, you could create an internal site to display all important announcements:

Using a SharePoint page for internal communication

You could also use a tool such as VisualSP to give users quick access to important information. VisualSP lays over any website to provide users with in-context support (click here to get started for free).

vsp-homepage-animation-edited-1

4. Get Feedback From Your Team

It's important to get feedback from employees on your internal communication efforts. This will help you to identify areas where you can improve and make sure that your messages are resonating with your audience.

Two effective ways to get feedback from employees are surveys and one-on-one discussions.

Here are some specific questions you could ask employees:

  • How often do you receive important information from our company?
  • What are your preferred channels for receiving information?
  • What information do you feel is most important to receive?
  • How do you feel about the way information is currently communicated to you?
  • What suggestions do you have for improving internal communication?

By asking these questions, you can better understand what employees need and want from your internal communication efforts. This information will help you to create a communication strategy that is effective and engaging for your employees.

Conclusion

By improving internal communication, organizations can create a more informed, engaged, and productive team.

VisualSP can ensure that you deliver the right message, to the right users, in the right place, at the right time.

If you'd like to give VisualSP a try, click here to start a free trial.

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