Internal Communications Best Practices
Internal Communications Best Practices for Non-Desk Employees
No matter the industry, effective communication is critical. Whether it’s about an important safety announcement, a schedule change, or a reminder about an upcoming social event, getting the word out to your staff matters in the workplace. So what’s the best way to do it?
If you work in an office, emails or messaging apps are appropriate communication options for keeping everyone on the same page. But what if you or your workers are employees in the warehouse or in the field? When you have people on the ground at construction sites, or on the factory floor, checking emails or phone apps isn’t feasible.
So what should your internal communication look like? SMS text messages to your workers can be a great solution, and scheduling texts to employees can add even more flexibility and ease to the process.
In this article we’ll explore:
- A list of best practices for effective communication with non-desk employees
- The basics of internal communications within a company
- How to develop a strategy that meets your business’s needs
- Some options for software to make it easier
Communication Best Practices in the Workplace
When you have something you need to communicate with employees, what you say and how you say it matters. Let’s go over some general best practices to get you started thinking about some of the most important parts of this process.
- Make sure your message reaches everyone you want it to. This means using the right methods of messaging recipients to make sure no one is being left out. An SMS text message based system, like Yourco, can reach employees in the field or on the floor that may not have a computer or reliable internet access.
- Have a two-way system. This means making sure the people you are communicating with have a convenient way to respond. When there is open communication, they can see that someone is listening to their feedback as well.
- Communicate regularly. If staff only receive work communications once a month, they’re less likely to feel connected, have all their questions answered, or remember established communication expectations. Regular daily or weekly communications mean everyone stays up to speed.
These are some of the high level best practices to set the foundation of your workplace communication practice. Now let’s look at some more specifics for how and what you should share.
What Are the 7 Cs of Effective Communication and How Do You Apply Them to Non-Desk Employees?
We’ll use the framework of the seven C’s of effective communication to categorize other best practices in your non-desk employees communication plan.
- Use straightforward language.
- Attach diagrams or photos for clarity if needed.
- Get to the point quickly without unnecessary pleasantries or extra information.
- Communicate only with the people who will find the information useful, don’t send every message to every staff member. Creating different groups within your communication platform can make this process quick and easy.
- Make sure to explicitly state what needs to be done with the information you’ve shared.
- Include relevant measurements or facts necessary to understanding what is happening or what needs to be done.
- Double check that times, dates, measurements, etc are accurate.
- Consult people in other departments to make sure that the information you are sharing is true for everyone.
- Check for typos or autocorrected text that makes your message unclear.
- Use language that will make sense to your audience and keep messages simple so staff can quickly digest needed information.
- Send all the information needed to understand a message at one time.
- Make sure to send messages to the entire group that needs the information, so no one is left out or confused.
- Consider the time of day when sending text messages, especially for shift workers who might be on different sleeping schedules.
- Avoid group messages which can overload staff with everyone’s responses or put people on the spot to share more than they are comfortable with.
What Is Internal Communications in an Organization?
Now that we’ve gone over some best practices, let’s take a step back and look at the fundamentals of business communication. Internal communication in a business means sharing information to all levels of personnel. Business owners and managers will use internal communication to tell staff about overall company goals and individual assignments. Managers will communicate with each other to divide tasks between their different teams. Employees will communicate with HR and other superiors when requesting time off, pay raises, or more clarity to understand their assignments.
There are many types of internal communication channels that can be used for these tasks. Some of the most common include:
This requires computer or smartphone access and a reliable internet connection, which staff in the field may not have. Non-desk employees are also less likely to have a company email address.
Things like Whatsapp or Slack need a smartphone and reliable internet connections. Employees may also be reluctant to download apps onto their personal devices.
Group Text Messages
This doesn’t require a smartphone, internet, or downloading apps. It can, however, create irrelevant message strings which can lead to staff tuning out messages. It also brings up privacy issues and legal risk to the business when all staff have access to everyone’s contact information.
Yourco SMS-Based Texting Platform
These messages appear as individual texts with nothing to download or install. Staff can reply as they would to a normal text message and replies only go to HR and/or their supervisor with no shared contact information. The system also keeps a record of all messages for documentation.
What Are Internal Communication Strategies?
Your internal communication strategy is the blueprint for how to best communicate with everyone in the company. Internal communication best practices for leaders include creating a written communication plan to clarify company expectations for executives, managers, and staff. This way everyone understands their roles. An internal communication policy for employees should let staff know which communication channels will be used, how often they should expect to receive important messages, and what type of response is expected on what timeline.
What Are the Objectives of an Internal Communications Strategy?
When designing a communications strategy and developing best practices, knowing what you’re trying to accomplish with your communication is important. The main objectives for many companies include things like:
- Informing staff of important information
- Influencing how workers view their job and the company itself
- Engaging employees in workplace culture to improve their satisfaction
- Building trust in the company to communicate clearly and listen when problems arise
- Sharing knowledge and skills to improve worker performance
How Do You Write an Internal Communication Strategy?
Having a written strategy for your specific company’s best practices for communication helps everyone understand how to communicate in a professional environment. But how do you sit down to write one? Here’s a quick guide to creating your internal communication strategy with examples specific to non-desk workers’ needs.
What Are the Objectives of an Internal Communications Strategy?
- Know Where You Are Now. Write down what your company currently does. Then ask for input from non-desk-based staff to ensure they see current communication in the same way you do.
- Set Your Communication Objectives. What kinds of things do you need to communicate often? How do you want staff to engage with messages they receive?
- Think About Your Audience. What are the needs of your staff? Do they all have smartphones or an internet connection during their work day? How often does their work allow them to take breaks to check for messages?
- Decide Which Best Practices Work for Your Business. If you run a construction company, this could look like:
- Staff are on a list specific to their manager, so they only receive messages that apply to the job they’re working on.
- Managers message their crew each morning at 8 am with the job location for the day and weather check-in.
- All staff messages are sent to the entire employee list for things like safety concerns or company-wide reminders.
- Follow Through with these Best Practices. Think about how you will communicate the strategy and action plans to relevant parties and how they will be able to carry them out. Using text scheduling capabilities can make consistency easier for recurring messages.
- Evaluate the Plan. Ask yourself, management, and staff if the system is working well. Receive feedback in a way that makes staff feel comfortable sharing their authentic experiences.
- Make Changes if Needed. If certain aspects of your best practices aren’t working, change them and try again.
What Are Internal Communication Platforms?
Internal communication software and platforms are internet-based products that allow the workers within a company to share the information they need to do their jobs. The best internal communication platforms will be convenient to use, accessible to all your staff, and give you the functionality you need.
Yourco: Better Internal Communication Solutions for Non-Desk Workers
Not everyone has access to emails or can pick up a phone at work. But every worker does need to stay informed about workplace changes, safety concerns, scheduling, and announcements. That’s where Yourco comes in.
We developed a platform that works for all your staff in the field or on the floor. We’re different than your other options because:
- Our system sends SMS text messages that are received just like any others. No need for your staff to have a smartphone, data plans, or a connection to the internet.
- Managers can quickly and easily send messages to groups or individuals and get personal replies without the headache of a group chat.
- Workers’ contact information and replies stay private from their coworkers.
- Records of all communications are kept for documentation, even after an employee leaves the company.
- Texts can be easily scheduled and sent at optimum times for everyone’s convenience.
- Incoming and outgoing communications can be translated into any language to avoid miscommunications.
When you’re ready to connect with your whole team, contact us or schedule a demo to see the Yourco difference.
Yourco is the best thing we did last year! We are able to send instant text message communications to all of our employees.