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on February 8, 2022 Internal Communications Employee Engagement Company Culture Newsletters HR Documents

Use Employee Newsletters to Prepare For a Return to Office

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After several years of working remotely, returning to the office requires a lot of adjustments. It’s important to help your company’s staff transition smoothly back to work feeling energized and motivated. One of the ways you can connect and engage with workers while they are away is through an employee newsletter.

Long standing employees went through several cycles of postponement and mixed messaging. New employees, driven by the mass turnovers, may have never been in person. They need their employers to work with them in solving the challenges ahead. Your company newsletter is essential for both fast and easy communication and promoting employee engagement. Therefore, it’s a natural solution for educating and preparing workers.

Why Newsletters?

An employee newsletter is an electronic mode of communication that helps organizations share information and maintain information with their workforce. They can be distributed on a wider scale, thus reducing the need to send out individual emails.

The main goal of a company newsletter is to share information with team members. This can cover a wide scope, including internal updates or shoutouts. This flexibility is why it would be a perfect avenue to communicate a new return to office policy. 

Ensure Safety Measures Are In Order

Returning after a long break from a physical workspace can affect your employee's both physical and mental wellbeing. Because of that, safety issues have been a top concern for many when returning to work. 

In order to put your employees’ minds at ease, it’s important to ensure they feel safe both physically and mentally by applying safety measures. Leverage a special edition of the newsletter with various safety tips and updated policy. 

However, a single post isn’t enough. You’ll need a communication strategy that continuously emphasizes all new policies and ensures that you are taking it seriously. In any subsequent issues, include small sections that highlight every measure put into place to ensure your employees’ safety.

Offer Flexible Choices

Flexible work is here to stay.

While working from the office is effective, it is also important to consider roles that can be executed flexibly from home or within hybrid work setups. The workforce consists of various generations that thrive in various work setups. A Gen Z worker might find a remote job setup more favorable, while a baby boomer might find an in person work setup more productive. Keeping options that favor various types of employees can help foster productivity and morale.

But what happens when your hybrid workforce becomes more split than ever? The best employee communication tools can segment your population, and send only the most relevant information to each group. Leverage this tactic for your company newsletter so that no one is bombarded with irrelevant material. 

Ensure Effective Communication

Employees need to know what to expect when they return to the office to feel at ease. New workplace protocols must be communicated often. Yet, this communication is a two way street. Taking in regular feedback is important when drafting a new proposal. 

Using surveys, comments and ideas to gauge your employee’s opinion regularly can also help improve communication. Micropolls and pulse surveys are a perfect break from the more information dense newsletters. It also has the benefit of higher engagement than a standard survey sent out via mass email. 

Inform with Just the Subject Line

A catchy subject line is important as it’s the first thing a recipient sees. Good ones can entice readers. However, for those that don’t want to read the entire document, a subject line must provide quick informational tidbits. 

Because time frames are very important, add the return to office date right in the title. This way, employees can see that right in their inbox. This also makes it easily searchable, so they can quickly communicate the most important information first. 

Understand analytics

Analytics are an important part of any communication plan.

Survey responses aren't the only way to gauge your team member’s opinions regarding an office policy. Open and clickthrough rates can tell a lot as well. Do newsletters that clearly include internal updates get better engagement? Are employees scrolling down to sections that mention a return to office? If your company newsletter has a call to action to a more detailed company document, what is the click through rate? 

Your email newsletters can collect a lot of information without directly asking. Make sure your internal communications tool has the capacity to gather and analyze all this rich data. 

Leverage Storytelling

The main target audience for this newsletter is your employee. It’s hence important to create these communications with them in mind. Include personal stories of your employees to add that human element. 

The most memorable newsletters are those that adapt storytelling techniques. Interview your workers and include their thoughts on their work station. Add fun sections comparing people’s home office setups. Or even share techniques people have picked up to stay positive over the past few years. 

It doesn’t have to only include policy. Use your internal newsletter to weave stories that showcase the employee experience and mold your company culture. 

Returning to the Office Doesn’t Have to be Hard

These are certainly still challenging times. As you prepare to have your employees back in a physical location, go beyond just standard communications. Use this opportunity to spice up your employee newsletter, keeping your workers both informed and entertained. Your company newsletter is one of the best tools in your arsenal to support this transition.

backstitch Studio is the best solution for creating your newsletter, making sure it gets to the right people, and analyzing your results. Learn more today

Sydnie Kerr

Customer Content Manager

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