Effective internal communication is essential in all companies, but it is particularly important in large organisations and those with a dispersed workforce. Without effective communication, mistakes are made, opportunities are missed, productivity goes down, and employees feel disconnected.
Importantly, communication itself is not enough, as it is simply too noisy out there. Most organisations work hard to communicate with email, email newsletters, intranets, and other technologies and strategies to engage, inform, and educate staff. Communication isn’t the problem – effective communication is the challenge.
Take email for example. According to the email marketing platform Campaign Monitor, the average worker sends and receives over 120 emails a day. How do you cut through that noise to ensure your employees receive essential internal messages and communications?
Instant Alerts and Notifications
Instant alerts and notifications are a crucial part of the solution. You will need a broader internal communication strategy as well as various communication assets (ticketing system, FAQs, help documentation, etc), but instant alerts and notifications are the key elements.
Access Symphony Signal provides you with the functionality you need to utilise the power of instant alerts and notifications. With Symphony Signal, you can cut through the noise of email and all the other messages that your employees have to deal with every day. When you send an alert or notification using Symphony Signal, the message appears directly on the desktop of the employee’s device.
In other words, the message is immediate, can’t be missed, and must be dealt with. You can target the messages to specific people or groups, and the conversation is two-way. So, for example, you can ask employees to confirm they have read and understood the message. You can even go further by asking for feedback or information in survey format, as Signal also has survey functionality.
Real-World Applications of Symphony Signal
Symphony Signal can be adapted to the requirements of your organisation, but here are three of the main use cases based on the experiences of our enterprise customers.
Communication in Emergency Situations
In emergency situations, time is usually a critical factor, as you might need employees to act immediately to protect themselves, others, or business assets or infrastructure. Even in situations where there is no immediate threat, instant and effective communication is beneficial.
Here are some examples of emergency situations where instant alerts and notifications are the ideal forms of communication:
- Fire alarms – this includes notifying employees of active fire alarm situations, but it could also be used to inform employees of fire alarm tests.
- Severe weather – keep employees up to date on severe weather conditions and what the company plans to protect people and property.
- Accidents and other health and safety issues – instant alerts and notifications can be used to alert employees to immediate dangers as a result of accidents. Another example is sending notifications to trained first aiders requesting assistance in an accident situation.
- Intruders – providing information to employees on how to stay safe and what to do next if there is an intruder.
- Data breaches and cyberattacks – emergencies can be virtual as well as physical, with some virtual emergency situations also requiring immediate action from employees.
Instant alerts and notifications are also highly effective at delivering critical communications to employees. The types of communication that are categorised as critical will differ from organisation to organisation, but some examples include:
- Planned maintenance – informing employees of planned maintenance of IT, equipment, buildings, and facilities. The notification or alert could also give advice to the employee on things they can do to minimise the impact of the planned downtime.
- Unplanned downtime – one of the challenges that IT teams face during periods of unplanned downtime is dealing with the influx of support tickets that come in, all of which have the same information. The same challenge can face facilities managers if, for example, there is an issue with a building. With an enterprise-grade communication solution tool like Symphony Signal, support staff can send a notification to all affected employees to let them know the problem is being worked on, reducing the number of support tickets that are sent.
- Critical IT communications – there are many reasons why the IT team might need to deliver a critical message to employees, particularly in relation to cyber and data security. Instant alerts and notifications ensure critical IT communications are not missed, overlooked, or ignored.
- Important announcements – instant alerts and notifications can also be used by senior leaders to send important announcements to employees.
- Compliance communications – notifications on compliance issues can be sent immediately to the right groups of people. Importantly, you can also get employees to acknowledge they have received and understood the information. This feedback data can be stored and referred to at a later date if required.
- Customer and reputational-related issues – it is sometimes important to communicate quickly with staff about serious customer or reputational issues. An example could be a fault with a product or a product recall, where you can provide accurate information to employees and instructions on what they should do.
- Fraud alert – organisations need to remain proactive and vigilant to protect themselves against fraud. Instant notifications and alerts can help, especially in situations where it is essential the message is read.
Getting Employee Feedback
Employee surveys help you gather feedback, identify challenges, and improve overall communication. The problem is getting employees to engage with your surveys. Even if they y spot the surveyit in their inbox , it is too easy to leave it until later. More often than not, later means never.
In many situations, that means spending additional time following up with employees to encourage them to complete the survey.
Symphony Signal offers a solution, as it also includes powerful survey functionality. You can target the survey at specific groups or company-wide, with employees immediately notified on their desktops.
Surveys conducted using Symphony Signal are also about more than gathering feedback, as you can also use them to enhance communication, provide information, and offer support.
For example, you could send a survey to every new recruit at a certain point on their induction journey. The survey can ask for feedback, such as rating their induction session, asking do they understand how to request time off, or checking if the printer is working.
You can go further than this by also, for example, providing a quick guide within the survey on how to use the printer, with links to more detailed information. Depending on the answers given by the survey respondent, you can set the survey to automatically notify someone who can provide additional help and information. In the case of the printer, the IT support team could be automatically notified.
So, Symphony Signal lets you gather feedback while also creating opportunities for meaningful conversations with employees.
Taking Communication to Another Level
Email remains a primary form of communication in many organisations, but its limitations and downsides are well-known. So much so, in fact, that email is now rarely used for team collaboration. When teams need to collaborate, they use instant messaging apps and specialised collaboration tools.
It is now time to also move on from email when sending emergency or critical communications, and when seeking employee feedback. The instant notification and alert solutiontool Access Symphony Signal is the solution that will take your internal communications to another level. It allows you to send the perfect message to just the right audience at just the right time.
If Symphony Signal is a product you’re interested in, come along to our launch event: Access Symphony Signal – Product Launch – Access IT Automation
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