Top five internal comms trends for 2019

Top five internal comms trends for 2019

The last few years have seen some pretty big changes in the Internal Comms world, and 2019 is looking like it might usher in even more changes. We’ve put our heads together and come up with five Internal Comms trends we predict will make a splash in 2019 ...

More access to the top brass

It’s not a secret that adopting a transparent leadership style is beneficial to a workforce – it improves company culture, employee engagement and boosts the reputation of the business itself. All of which combine to create loyalty for both employees and customers.

But building a culture of transparency isn’t easy. The best way to do it is to start at the very top. Business (especially in the UK) is facing an uncertain future in 2019, which can have a real adverse impact on employee morale.

A great way to combat this is to give business leaders a direct comms channel with the wider workforce. They should share both positive and negative news, and it should always be a two-way dialogue where they are happy to answer employees’ questions. Uncertain times call for strong, clear leadership that everyone can rally behind. If you aren’t already, make sure your leaders have a regular comms channel to all employees.

Workplace to continue its charge

Workplace by Facebook has been forging a path for itself over the last couple of years, and we predict it will continue to skyrocket in popularity.

A variation of social media giant Facebook, Workplace offers a similar platform where users can post on their walls and scroll through a personalised timeline. Additionally, it integrates with over 50 popular tools such as Survey Monkey, Office 365, Trello and Box, meaning workforces can communicate and work in the same online space.

The beauty of Workplace is that almost everyone can instinctively understand it and use it. For comms professionals, Workplace presents a peculiar challenge. The natural limitations of the platform dictate a certain style of comms that means you need short, to-the-point messages. However, with a little creativity you can curate and publish longform stories.  

Yammer and Slack to further supplant email

Email is increasingly seen as a time-sponge rather than a time-saver, so it’s no surprise that workplaces are looking to free staff from the black hole of their inbox. It’s easy to forsee more organisations embracing instant messaging platforms like Yammer and Slack. The beauty of these tools isn’t that they replace email completely – they simply ‘cut the noise’ by facilitating quick, simple, back-and-forth messaging between colleagues. It cuts down on time spent rifling through emails and gives colleagues more time to do what they’re good at.    

Live video to gain more of a foothold

A classic case of existing technology being used in a new way. The value of live video for personal communication, learning and development, and marketing is well-established. Now, organisations are discovering the benefits of letting their employees see and hear important updates in real time.

In larger organisations where daily huddles aren’t possible, or when the CFO needs to address colleagues in London, Leeds and Leicester simultaneously, the benefit of video is obvious. With infrastructure already in place in many offices, live video is an IC tool whose time has come.

Uncertainty and the importance of reactive comms

Quite simply, think Brexit. Whatever side of the Leave/Remain debate you or your senior leaders are on, everyone agrees that UK businesses are in uncharted waters. The only certainty is uncertainty.

As March 29 approaches, change will happen quickly, with unknowable scale and frequency. Reactive comms has always been a vital function for IC professionals but we’ll need to up our game in Q1 of 2019 – and probably beyond – to deal with events as they unfold and make sure employees aren’t left out of the Brexit loop.

What did we miss?

Sorting trends from fads can sometimes be a bit of a finger-in-the-air process. Do you think we got anything wrong? Have we played it too safe? Is 2019 the year that holograms really take hold? Let us know your top five trends for the year.

We might even revisit the list at the end of the year and see how we all did … bragging rights to play for.  

Engagement – it’s a culture thing

Engagement – it’s a culture thing

BBC features ‘Love Where You Work – Milton Keynes’

BBC features ‘Love Where You Work – Milton Keynes’