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Why Internal Communication Tools Are Either Mobile-First or Outdated

7 minute read

“The Times They Are A-Changing,” and sometimes changes come fast and furiously. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused many HR-managers and internal communications specialists to have a hard look at the way their company communicates with its employees. The rise of the remote workforce and an increased need for instruction, motivation, and monitoring employee wellbeing all point to one conclusion: the old internal communications tools are no longer up to the challenge.

Read 'Top 10 Internal Communications Lessons from the First COVID-19 Shutdown' to learn more about this subject. Although these lessons are universal, the corona crisis has only made it more obvious what employees need, and unfortunately, often do not get.

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Not surprisingly, we see a growing interest in mobile-first communication solutions, especially in organizations with a dispersed, deskless workforce. Are you still relying on ancient internal communications tools such as email and company newsletters? Here are some rather convincing arguments to follow in the footsteps of employers who meet the latest challenges with the newest technology.

To engage employees, you need to reach them on their terms.

Frontline staff, factory workers and other deskless employees often do not have access to a computer. The only way to inform and connect with these employees is via their mobile devices. And to unlock the full potential of this channel, an employee app is the internal communications tool you need.

Supplying your employees with a modernized, mobile-first employee communication tool is the best and most effective way to improve your internal communications and ultimately boost engagement. Let's look at the different ways an employee app can contribute to this goal.

Helps create and maintain a positive work environment and culture

Although many non-mobile internal communication tools do offer features for remote/desk-less workers, what they lack is a crucial sense of wholesome work culture. It is essential to provide your employees with a platform where they can communicate: positive/negative feedback, suggestions for the company's improvement, and take part in constructive dialogues with the whole workforce. Having an employee app will help you to accomplish just this. It enables your workers to indulge in more meaningful, encouraging, and productive conversations, resulting in a wholesome work environment and culture, all from the ease of their readily available mobile phones.

Positive and healthy work environments are the core of any successful business. With social interaction at an all-time low due to COVID-19 and deskless/frontline workers feeling out of touch with the rest of the company generally, having an employee app as a mobile-first internal communications tool is critical. An internal communications employee app allows workers to communicate seamlessly with one another all on one platform — without the restraints of organizational hierarchies.

Communicates important information conveniently and swiftly — without the risk of it being unread

With such facilitating, innovative and thoughtful digital features all around us, why resort to aged and outdated internal communication tools like emails, text messages, and newsletters to convey relevant information? Additionally, operating internal communications on everyday social media apps such as Facebook and Whatsapp is a one-way road to decreased productivity levels and potential data leaks. Although these apps are easily available, they come with loads of privacy concerns and disorganized communication channels which are almost impossible to control.

For example, every time your employee picks up their mobile phones to check for work-related updates, they will most likely lose focus and be distracted by their social media notifications, and they might end up not reading the update at all.

An employee app acts as the central hub of any company-related information and allows workers to receive critical updates and alerts, without the risk of diverting their attention. Utilizing a singular communication channel helps streamline all significant and relevant data into one platform, making it convenient for employees to access it. Pivotal updates and data will no longer get lost under piles of emails, company newsletters, or other unrelated notifications, and it will reach your employees swiftly — as opposed to non-mobile communication tools.

Enhances positive employee experience in their comfort zone

While considering the workforce in contemporary times, everyone has a mobile phone, whether they have access to a computer/laptop or not. Thus, it makes sense to utilize mobile phones, a device that your employees are definitely familiar with and an internal communications tool such as an employee app which is mobile-friendly. The ideal employee app offers employees a customizable experience, digitized tasks, and tailored messages that meet their specific needs in various departments. Ensuring that your workers have a single platform that offers personalized internal communication is very important.

Many companies and businesses that use outdated internal communications tools fail to recognize the benefits of an employee app in this regard. Tailoring your internal communications messages through an employee app ensures higher levels of employee engagement. Once you put value and effort into customizing messages, your workforce will not only appreciate you for saving their time but recognize the hard work and reciprocate it.

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Provides seamless contact with frontline, desk-less workers and remote workforces especially

Your company may already utilize non-mobile internal communications tools, but how do you get through to non-desk/frontline employees who have jobs that require them to be up and about, as opposed to sitting in front of a desk all day? Additionally, how do you reach the workers who now work remotely due to the COVID-19 pandemic? Remote working and digitizing internal communications is becoming a hard and fast reality for many companies, especially with the pandemic in play. Your employees need a simplified, one-stop platform that can be accessed around the clock in case of, for example, emergency updates.

Keeping your dispersed, deskless and remote workforce in mind, non-mobile tools are no longer a sufficient means for employee engagement and internal communications. How would you convey important company updates if your employees are in different time zones with various schedules? If you have a relatively diverse workforce, language can also become a huge issue. Your most dependable solution here is an employee app. The best employee apps offer features such as push notifications to convey high-priority updates to all employees in the concerned department — no matter where they are.

Conclusion

Running a stable and successful business requires high levels of employee engagement. Not only does investing in an employee app benefit your employees' general satisfaction, but also the company in the long run. Using a mobile-first communication tool will stimulate higher employee engagement levels leading to increased productivity, high-quality work, and reduced employee turnovers. Unsatisfactory and outdated internal communications methods usually result in disengaged employees where they feel unrecognized, unappreciated, and disconnected from the company. A modern internal communications tool such as an employee app offers you an advanced way to connect with your frontline, deskless and remote workers conveniently in their comfort zone.

Read more about advanced communication tools in our research study Technology's Role in Managing & Retaining Employees.

Rob is a content writer, copywriter and novelist. His work for Apple, WWF, Mercedes-Benz and many other brands has been awarded with prestigious creative awards.

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