Top trends for Internal Comms in 2017

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Top trends for Internal Comms in 2017

Today’s businesses are always looking to optimise how they communicate with employees, but the tools and strategies they ust are constantly changing in popularity. So what’s big in internal comms for 2017?

Video

Not much of an innovation, you may say? Ok, it’s not exactly new, but videos will definitely be trending in 2017 as a way of communicating within companies. We use videos for almost everything, why not use them as an Internal Comms tool?

The rise of video is clear: in 2016 Snapchat said its users watched 10 billion videos per day, with Facebook revealing figures closer to eight billion videos daily. Not to mention Youtube, which also has ‘billions’ of visits per day. So what can we learn from all this? Of course, many of these views are for personal consumption, but the business usage of videos is poised to grow considerably in 2017. Already, video is becoming increasingly used by business executives as a medium to stay updated on work-related topics on weekly basis.

With billions of us already consuming and sharing videos on our smartphones, tablets and PCs, it should come as no surprise that video will be the next big thing for internal comms departments.

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Enterprise Social Networks

Over the past decade, adoption of ESNs has grown from 10% of businesses to 65%,  and a McKinsey Global survey predicts it will plateau at 70% by the end of 2017.  Facebook is vying to push that number even higher, by muscling out tools like Yammer, Jive, and slack; they’re even pushing to replace corporate email…

But Facebook might not get what Facebook wants, and email in particular may rightly scoff at predictions of its death continue to be exaggerated.

Yet with almost 1.8 billion active users, Facebook will be hoping that “Workplace” replicates the parent company’s phenomenal social network success inside the ESN environment in 2017.

Engagement

You’ve read this many times, we know, but there’s VERY strong evidence about the correlation between an engaged workforce and financial performance. 2017 will see a greater focus on this critical component of the employee experience.

In a 2015 global survey by Aon Hewitt found that a 5% increase in employee engagement was linked to a 3% increase in revenue growth the following year. The single most important factor driving employee engagement across the board is leadership. Engaging leaders who engage others are the key ingredient to creating a culture of engagement that sustains business growth.

But great leadership isn’t the only core element of an effective engagement strategy – valuing your people, establishing a strong corporate culture, and effective communication both internally and externally are all key to boosting employee engagement.

Want to read more about increasing employee engagement? Check out our previous post ‘The magnificent 7 of employee engagement‘ here. 

Influencing the influencers

In addition to boosting revenues, engaged employees can also become your company’s best advocates. Therefore, it is always important to identify the key influencers at all levels of your organisation and nurture their happiness and advocacy.

Knowing who is supportive and aligned to the company objectives, goals and ethos is very valuable information! But for ever engaged staff member, there’s usually a disaffected or non-engaged one.

While at different ends of the spectrum, they share an unlikely common bond: both are potential influencers, for good or bad. A good Internal Comms professional has the ability to identify and target both sides of the engagement game, encouraging those who are positively influential to be even more ambassadorial, and perhaps offering more tailored and remedial assistance to the less supportive. This identification process will certainly continue to evolve and rise in prominence for 2017!

Virtual Reality

VR is here, and it’s great! We will definitely see an increase in usage across the business landscape, but how is it going to help Internal Comms?

Before you get too excited, the impact VR will have on internal comms still remains unclear.

We have some ideas though… what about sharing videos or interactive infographics about a product release via VR? Or using VR to improve brainstorming sessions with live images that change as soon as the discussion topic changes?

VR has arrived, and whether or not you’re interested in experimenting with it now, it is something that will be an everyday part of office life soon… even (or perhaps especially?) in the Comms Department!

 

So, now that you know what to expect from 2017, do you plan on fully embracing one or more of these trends? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section!

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