Internal communications affects every part of how your business runs. It includes all of the messages sent and received by every level of the company, from quick emails to in-depth trainings. It can affect how employees do their day to day work and how customers perceive your brand. Developing an internal communications strategy can get your entire team on the same page to work together and make the company a success.
So what exactly is Internal Communications?
Internal communications is the process of people working within the same company communicating with one another. It’s the spreading of messages throughout the entire organization. Internal communications can be formal or informal, depending on the types of messages and the channels they go through.
Horizontal communication, also called lateral communication, occurs between people at the same level. Vertical communication moves up or down within the hierarchy of the company. Each have their own purposes, but both work to keep the company productive and efficient.
Channels of Communication
Messages between members of an organization can be formal or informal, depending on the type of message and how that message is delivered. Every company has the ability to send and receive formal and informal messages in a variety of ways. Below are some of the most widely used channels.
- Email – Generally, this is the mostly widely used channel. Email can get messages to groups of any size quickly and make it easy to initiate a conversation. However, the downside to emailing is inboxes can quickly overfill and messages may be lost.
- Intranets and Employee Apps – Traditional intranets allow for the distribution of information at the employee’s own pace. It also provides an archive of previous messages.
- Instant Messaging and Chat Systems – A company’s instant message system is a quick way to send informal messages that should be followed up on with another channel.
- Project Management Software – Allow for work to be divided, so that collaboration among only the people that need to be informed can happen.
Why is Internal Communication Important?
Long story short, internal communications help increase your employees productivity and helps your company succeed in the long run. Internal communications should be a priority within any organization for various reasons:
- Vertical and lateral messages allow everyone involved in the organization to feel like they have a voice and their voice is being heard.
- Internal messaging should mean that news is shared internally before external sources have access. Employees should never feel blindsided by receiving information about the company from an outside news source.
- Vertical messages can empower managers by giving them information to disseminate to their employees.
- A company should have a common goal, and internal communication strategies can help to establish that goal and make sure every team member is on the same page.
- In a time of crisis, internal communication is more important than ever. It allows the company to put out a united message, prevent employees from panicking, and keep the company running as smoothly as possible while the crisis is being managed.
Does your internal communication strategy need some work? Contact backstitch today to find out more about how we can help you create a communication plan and put it into action.