You are aware that effective communication is necessary every single day. Have you ever wondered how good communication moves from one person to another, whether in your personal life or at work? Let's take a look at some of the most widely used workplace communication methods in the area of human resources.
What are communication channels?
A business operates because its employees cooperate and share information. Managers assign jobs and knowledge is spread. As a result, communication happens constantly to maintain a business. Nevertheless, one of the most fascinating aspects of any business is selecting the right communication channels for each message and idea. However, let's first understand what it is.
Communication channels can refer to both how we communicate and the particular technologies we employ.
Why is it important for HR?
Our quality of life is ultimately shaped by our interpersonal and intrapersonal interactions. Similarly, the success and efficiency of any organization are impacted by the interactions among its staff members.
1. Enhancing internal communication
In order for all employees to consistently give their best, show commitment to the company's mission and values, be motivated to contribute to its success, and experience improved well-being, it is crucial to establish a suitable organizational structure in the workplace.
2. Staying connected
A variety of modern technologies help to always stay connected. This is especially important for HR managers as they always have to communicate both with the working staff and with potential employees. This may be emails, messengers, and the most popular – phone calls. To employ this communication means more effectively, consider using auto attendant capabilities as it will help you to stay in touch and not miss any important call from a prospective candidate even if you are busy right now.
3. Building more effective teams
Lack of effective internal communication hinders the growth and strength of a team. A team that possesses efficient internal communication functions with greater success and possesses a deeper understanding of the organizational culture. They collaborate to establish a mutually beneficial working relationship and gain a clearer understanding of the company's goals and objectives.
4. Lessening contention
Conflicts are an inevitable part of the workplace, often arising from differences in opinions, misunderstandings, or a sense of being undervalued. Each individual brings a distinct worldview shaped by diverse experiences, values, and backgrounds, which contribute to their unique ideas. By acknowledging and promoting an environment that encourages open expression of ideas and genuine discussions about concerns, we can effectively address and resolve disagreements in the workplace.
5. Encouraging staff
Internal communication channels can be effectively utilized to facilitate the recognition and appreciation of employees upon completing tasks or milestones. This communication tool holds the potential to motivate and cultivate a culture of celebration and gratitude among the workforce within your organization.
6. Promoting greater openness
Active internal communication within a company creates a rumor-free environment. The transparent sharing of information eliminates secrecy and enhances employee awareness of facts, eliminating ambiguity in informal communication. Consequently, this fosters a culture of openness and trust between management and staff.
Best communication channels for HR
People need a single space where they can get answers to questions, document templates, and other organizational information. Ideally, you need a whole portal that contains:
- Chats and groups
- Feedback systems
- Knowledge bases and libraries
Social networks, video conferences, and messengers
Many communication channels provide additional convenience. After all, people can perceive content in different ways. But when creating another conversation in the messenger, remember that you will have to deal with each channel.
You can keep accounts on social networks, and publish company news, interesting articles, and interviews with employees there. If you don't have a corporate portal, you can create, for example, a WhatsApp group to work on projects. This allows you to quickly resolve issues and share experiences without having to hold lengthy meetings or calls.
Video conferences and online meetings can be used as additional channels. In addition, they allow people to communicate with colleagues from other cities or countries.
The newsletter allows you to quickly distribute information among the company's employees. It also helps to strengthen team spirit and improve work efficiency. However, this channel is still not worth abusing. It is also important not to overload people with information, because they have a lot of other things to do. If the newsletter comes every day and contains a canvas of text, it will quickly lose effectiveness and people will stop being interested in it.
Surveys allow employees to express opinions about their work, and offer ideas for improving the company's business processes and products. It is most convenient to conduct them with the help of special IT solutions. You need to work with the survey results. As a result, this has a positive effect on business efficiency.
For some people, it is more convenient to perceive information in audio format. Therefore, you can experiment and implement the podcast format. The main thing is not to release them too often, so as not to distract employees from everyday tasks.
Conferences, meetings, meetups
It is also important not to forget about traditional communication formats, such as conferences, meetings, and meetups. They can be useful for discussing important issues and making decisions, as well as for strengthening team spirit and motivation of employees.
Tips on how to build an effective internal communications system
The internal communications system (ICS) is the same project as everything else. Accordingly, it is necessary to approach it step by step.
1. Identify the problem
Usually, the initiative for the development of the ICS comes from the head, sometimes from a group of employees who have encountered difficulties. Before starting work, it is necessary to find out from the initiator what the goals are and what result is planned to be obtained.
2. Analyze existing processes
The easiest way to do this is to find out from people how they receive information now and how they would like it to be transmitted to them. To do this, you can conduct a survey of employees, study existing communication channels and their effectiveness, and assess the level of employee participation in the company's life and their level of awareness. Based on the analysis, it is possible to identify problematic points and develop a strategy to eliminate them.
3. Select communications channels
The third step should be the selection of channels and tools that best meet the needs of the company and its employees. At this stage, it is decided whether you need, for example, a large-scale portal or you can do with messengers.
4. Develop and implement a strategy
The fourth and most important step is to develop a strategy that will allow you to manage internal communication processes. It should be comprehensive and include both technological means and the creation of a transparent organizational culture.
It is also important to determine the formats, tools, channels, and tone of communication. Here it is easier to rely on the opinion of the people themselves: they know better how to communicate with them – choose a formal tone or a neutral one, which channel to throw off the news, etc.
In addition, it is necessary to take into account the specifics of each department and its tasks when choosing a format. For example, it is more effective for technical specialists to use electronic platforms for information exchange, and for the marketing team – regular face-to-face meetings.
It is also important to establish clear rules and procedures for internal corporate communication to avoid misunderstandings and conflicts. For example, you can determine who is responsible for updating information on the company's portal and set rules for processing emails and messages in chats.
5. Evaluate the effectiveness
After the implementation of the strategy, it is necessary to evaluate its effectiveness. To do this, you can collect feedback from staff, and analyze statistics on the use of various channels. If something does not work, it is necessary to make adjustments and continue to improve the ICS.
6. Plan an onboarding procedure
To interact properly with new hires, HR must carefully prepare the onboarding process. This will provide new hires with the knowledge, contacts, and communication resources they need to feel at ease and confident enough to perform excellent work for the business. Staff connectivity in firms results in a 20–25% boost in staff productivity.
It can be challenging for new employees, specifically, to get the hang of things at work, which is why it's crucial to establish team connections for new hires right away.
7. Discuss the company's goals
An open and honest account of the company's mission and vision helps to raise business KPIs and creates a feeling of engagement and involvement among employees. They attempt to actively contribute to the company's performance by being informed of its real priorities.
8. Be an example!
Role models are essential in behavior correction, making it crucial to encourage employees' communication successes and establish a repository of successful solutions. Leading by example, particularly by demonstrating effective communication skills and active listening, is vital.
Why should we pay close attention to the internal communications system?
The era of the proud silence of the management and the submissiveness of employees is irrevocably gone. Now the staff wants to be aware of everything that is happening. Insufficient attention to internal communications can lead to extremely negative consequences, such as a decrease in productivity, an increase in the level of employee dissatisfaction, and, as a result, an increase in turnover. Therefore, this is an area that needs to be worked on constantly. Management should pay due attention to this issue and invest in the development of internal communications.