HR ~ 14 min

Communications 101: What Can You Do to Encourage Employees to Read Announcements?

HR Team, People Experts, Sociabble
HR Team People Experts

So the big question: What can you do to encourage employees to read announcements? If you’ve worked in internal communications, you’ve probably struggled with this very issue, trying to salvage those messages that get lost in the digital noise.

And with good reason! Everyone knows that informed employees are the best employees. They’re more engaged, more  productive, and overall, more excited about their jobs. 

Which is precisely why in the ever-evolving landscape of the modern workplace, keeping employees informed is a paramount task for any organization. Ensuring that your workforce is up-to-date with the latest developments, policies, and announcements is not just a matter of good practice, and it’s more than just a good idea; it’s a fundamental driver of efficiency and productivity. However, reaching frontline workers, those individuals who often don’t have easy access to traditional internal communications channels, can be quite the challenge.

This blog post explores the critical importance of keeping your employees in the loop, offers examples of key announcements that directly impact their daily tasks, and sheds light on the pivotal role that mobile technology plays in bridging the gap in internal comms.

We’ll delve into effective techniques to encourage employees to read announcements, touching on employee features like “must-read” functionality, gamification elements, knowledge assessment surveys, and the power of video conferencing.

Moreover, we’ll emphasize the vital role of crafting appealing, multimedia-rich content in the right language to boost engagement. And in the end, you can use these tips to get employees to read your own announcements, too.

Quick tips to encourage employees to read announcements:

    1. Ensure announcements are accessible on smartphones
    2. Make critical announcements mandatory reading
    3. Gamify the process
    4. Assess comprehension with quizzes following announcements
    5. Foster real-time interaction for complex or sensitive topics
    6. Craft compelling announcements

The Significance of Staying Updated

Staying on top of things matters. And in today’s fast-paced business environment, working to get employees updated with the latest information is not merely a nicety; it’s an imperative. Employees who are well-informed about company developments and announcements are better equipped to navigate their roles effectively. 

Let’s dive into the importance of staying updated via communication channels, and explore some key areas where this information is crucial.

And if you want to know more about employee communication, check out this comprehensive guide.

The Necessity of Announcements

Announcements serve as the lifeblood of an organization’s internal comms. They act as a bridge, connecting the company’s leadership and its workforce. These announcements can take many forms, from written memos to multimedia presentations, and they cover a wide spectrum of topics.

The essential nature of announcements lies in their ability to convey vital information, news, and updates, which, in turn, helps to get employees engaged and aware of the evolving business landscape.

an employee read an annoucement on her phone

Examples of Key Announcements for Employee Efficiency

Policy Changes
Policies are the guidelines that steer an organization’s operations. Any alteration or amendment to these policies can have significant implications for employees. Announcing policy changes promptly via internal comms, and ensuring that every member of the team is aware is vital. Whether it’s a shift in HR policies, safety protocols, or remote work guidelines, these updates directly impact how employees operate within the company.

Product Updates
For businesses involved in product development or sales, working to get your employees informed about product updates is a game-changer. It ensures that your salesforce, for instance, is armed with the latest features, benefits, and selling points. It also enables product development teams to gather crucial feedback from those on the frontline, improving products in real-time.

Safety Protocols
Safety is paramount in many industries, such as manufacturing, construction, or healthcare. Announcements regarding safety protocols, best practices, and any updates to safety guidelines are absolutely critical. Ensuring that every employee, especially those in high-risk positions, is aware of these protocols can be a matter of life and death.

The Impact on Employee Performance

Simply put, better internal communications leads to better productivity. The level of performance and productivity within an organization is intrinsically linked to the quality of communication and the employees’ understanding of their role in it. When employees are kept informed through announcements, the impact on their performance is substantial.

Here are a few ways you can get your employees better informed:

  • Clarity and Direction
    Well-informed employees understand their roles and the company’s objectives better. This clarity empowers them to work with purpose, reducing ambiguity and indecision.
  • Adaptability
    In an ever-changing business environment, adaptable employees are essential. Announcements keep them updated, allowing them to pivot swiftly and align with new goals and priorities.
  • Engagement and Motivation
    When employees feel that their employer values their input and keeps them in the loop, they are more engaged and motivated. This sense of belonging and purpose positively affects their performance.
  • Efficiency
    Timely announcements can help prevent errors and wasted efforts. For example, knowing about a software update can save hours of unnecessary work on outdated systems.

a frontline worker read an announcement on a tablet

As we’ve shown, the significance of staying updated with announcements cannot be overstated. From policy changes to product updates and safety protocols, these announcements are the cornerstone of effective organizational communication, with a direct impact on employee performance and the company’s overall success.

In the following sections, we’ll explore how to make sure these announcements reach every employee, even those on the frontlines, through mobile apps, innovative engagement techniques, and even perhaps a human interest angle.

The Mobile Advantage

In a world where the majority of us carry a powerful mini-computer in our pockets, it’s no surprise that mobile technology has become a vital component of modern business communication. The days of the trusty photocopied internal newsletter are behind us. 

This section explores the mobile advantage in employee engagement and delves into the need for mobile accessibility, the crucial role of company mobile apps, and the many benefits of providing announcements directly to employees on their smartphones.

The Need for Mobile Accessibility

Smartphones are essentially universal. They’re everywhere. And mobile accessibility is no longer a luxury but a necessity in today’s workforce. Employees are constantly on the move, with many operating in roles that don’t tether them to a desk or a traditional office space. The need to access important information, including announcements, while on the go has become paramount.

Whether your employees are traveling, working in the field, or simply prefer the flexibility of mobile devices, it’s essential to accommodate their lifestyle. Neglecting to do so can result in missed information, decreased engagement, and, ultimately, a less informed and effective workforce.

The Role of Company Mobile Apps

To address the need for mobile accessibility, an increasing number of companies are turning to company mobile apps. These apps serve as a dedicated platform for employees to access announcements, news, and company-specific content directly from their smartphones. The role of company mobile apps goes beyond mere convenience; they are game-changers in modernizing internal communications.

Company mobile apps offer a centralized hub for announcements, ensuring that all employees can access the same information simultaneously. This is particularly beneficial for frontline workers who might not have constant access to email or traditional intranet platforms. With a company app, announcements are available at the touch of a button, making sure that every employee, regardless of their location or work schedule, can stay informed in real-time.

a notification of company announcement on a mobile phone

Benefits of Providing Announcements on Smartphones

So do smartphones really make that much of a difference? Yes! The advantages of providing announcements on smartphones are manifold, benefiting both employees and the organization as a whole.

Real-time Updates
Smartphones allow for instant communication. Announcements can be pushed to employees’ devices, ensuring they receive critical information promptly. This is invaluable for time-sensitive updates or emergency situations. This is what Pierre Fabre used for effective communication during a cyber-attack.

Increased Engagement
Mobile apps are engaging by nature, offering multimedia options and interactive features that capture employees’ attention. The ease of use and accessibility encourages employees to check for updates regularly.

Accessibility for All
Mobile apps break down communication barriers, ensuring that even frontline workers have access to essential information. This promotes inclusivity and ensures everyone is on the same page.

Analytics and Tracking
Mobile apps often provide tools for organizations to track and analyze how employees engage with announcements. This data can help tailor internal comms strategies and content to be more effective.

So there you have it. Incorporating mobile accessibility into your internal communication business strategy is a fundamental step towards ensuring that all employees, regardless of their role or location, can access announcements effortlessly.

Techniques to Encourage Announcement Reading

Anyone can send out email blasts with a catchy subject line, or drop an internal newsletter in a mailbox. But that type of information dissemination just isn’t effective. Getting all or even most employees to read announcements isn’t only about making information available; it’s about ensuring they actively engage with and comprehend the content. 

In this section, we’ll explore various techniques designed to not only grab your employees’ attention but also encourage them to dive into announcements with enthusiasm.

The “Must-Read” Feature

Putting “Must Read” in the subject line isn’t enough; making certain messages mandatory can make a big difference. For example, one effective technique for ensuring employees read announcements is the Sociabble platform’s “Must-Read” feature. This feature makes certain announcements mandatory for all employees, and they must acknowledge or confirm their understanding before proceeding. Implementing this feature can be as simple as requiring a click of a button to acknowledge receipt.

The benefits are twofold: first, it guarantees that critical information is not overlooked or ignored, and second, it holds employees accountable for being aware of the content.

This accountability can be particularly vital for announcements related to safety protocols, policy changes, or compliance matters, where neglecting to read could have serious consequences. It’s a way to give employees the critical updates they need.

Example of the "must read" feature for announcement

Gamification Features

Who doesn’t love a little friendly competition? Gamification is a powerful tool to engage employees with announcements in a fun and interactive way. Points, rewards, and competitions can transform the act of reading announcements into an enjoyable experience.

For example, with Sociabble employees can earn points for reading and engaging with announcements, and these points can be redeemed for rewards or used in friendly competitions within the organization. This not only encourages employees to read announcements but also fosters a sense of camaraderie and team spirit, making engagement a part of the workplace culture.

Knowledge Assessment Surveys

Getting employees to actually read announcements is just the first step; ensuring that they understand and retain the information is equally vital. Knowledge assessment surveys are an effective technique to gauge comprehension. And with Sociabble, this can be done with just a few clicks.

After employees read an announcement, they can take a brief quiz or survey related to the content. These surveys not only reinforce the information but also help identify areas where employees may need further clarification.

For organizations, it provides a tangible way to assess the effectiveness of their internal comms strategy and identify areas that may need improvement, while also offering possibilities for employee feedback. 

Video Conferencing to Boost Engagement

It’s a fact: human beings are visual. And sometimes, announcements are best delivered through video conferencing. This medium allows for real-time interaction and feedback, providing a dynamic and engaging experience for employees.

With Sociabble, for example, live conferencing is built into the platform for all users to access, with the ability to host video calls and group meetings–the latter of which are perfect for town halls and big company-wide announcements.  

Video conferences allow for questions, discussions, and immediate clarifications, ensuring that employees not only passively consume information but actively participate in the conversation. This is particularly effective for complex or sensitive topics where clear communication is paramount.

Crafting Compelling Announcements

The success of any announcement does depend on the importance of the content, but also on how it is presented. This goes back to the days of the paper internal newsletter, but it’s still true today. Crafting compelling announcements involves not only what you say but also how you say it.

In this section, we’ll explore the significance of content format, emphasizing the incorporation of visual elements, such as images and videos, and the importance of using appropriate language and tone tailored to different audiences.

Content Format – Incorporating Visual Elements (Images and Videos)

In today’s digital age, visual content reigns supreme. Text-heavy announcements can often feel daunting and lead to a lack of engagement. To create compelling announcements, or even a more accessible web based message, consider incorporating images and videos into your content.

  • Images
    Visuals are a powerful way to break up large blocks of text and make your relevant content announcements more visually appealing. Infographics, charts, and photographs can help convey complex information in an easily digestible format. For example, a safety announcement can be significantly enhanced with clear diagrams illustrating safety procedures that workers need to know. 
  • Videos
    Videos are perhaps the most engaging medium for announcements. They allow for a dynamic and interactive experience. You can use videos to feature key stakeholders discussing important topics or to demonstrate a new product or procedure to help employees. With video, you can convey not just information but also emotion and context, making your announcement more relatable and memorable. With Sociabble Enterprise Video, for example, creating, editing, and posting video content is made simple, so every employee and admin can do it.

example of video to encourage announcement reading

Appropriate Language and Tone

Not all employees are the same, and one-size-fits-all announcements may not be effective. Tailoring your announcements to different audiences is essential to make sure that your message resonates with your entire workforce. Consider these factors to help employees absorb your messages:

  • Audience Segmentation
    Identify different employee groups within your organization, such as frontline workers, managers, and office staff. Craft announcements that speak directly to the concerns and interests of each group. With Sociabble, targeting audiences by team, role, office, region, or interest is made easy, with multiple criteria possible.
  • Language and Tone
    The language and tone of your announcements should match the culture and expectations of your organization. Sociabble’s instant translation feature, for example, provides a real-time translation of both written and video content in over 60 languages. 
  • Clarity and Simplicity
    Regardless of the audience, it’s essential to keep the language clear and simple. Avoid jargon or complex terms that may confuse or alienate employees.
  • Relevance
    Make sure the content of the announcement is directly relevant to the audience. For example, a policy change announcement might not be as relevant to frontline workers as it is to HR, so consider how to make it meaningful to all.

By tailoring your announcements to specific audiences and incorporating visual elements, you not only make the content more appealing but also more effective in conveying the message.

The Right Kind of Announcements Make Internal Communications More Effective  

So what have we learned about encouraging employees to read announcements? Well, here are the basic takeaways from this article:

Importance of Keeping Employees Informed
In the fast-paced business world of today, information is power. Employees need to be informed about company news, policy changes, and updates to stay aligned with the organization’s mission and objectives.

The Challenge of Communicating with Frontline Workers
While information dissemination is essential for all employees, reaching frontline workers is a unique challenge. These employees are often in the field, on the factory floor, or away from a desk, making it challenging to convey announcements through traditional means such as email or intranet.

The Use of Mobile Apps to Increase Employee Engagement
One effective solution to this challenge is leveraging mobile technology. Mobile apps offer a convenient and accessible platform through which employees, including those on the frontlines, can receive important announcements and stay informed in real-time.

And if you’re looking for a little help in the process, not to worry. Sociabble is the all-purpose internal comms platform designed to make everything discussed above easy.

It’s already been adopted by industry leaders around the world, including companies like Coca-Cola CCEP, Renault Group, L’Occitane, and Primark. If you’d like to learn more, just drop us a line. We’d be happy to discuss ways Sociabble can help your company take its communications to a whole new level.

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