Using internal communications to boost productivity and grow profits
There isn’t a commercial organisation in the land which doesn’t want to boost productivity and grow profits, but the question is how? There are many strategies which can be employed to meet these challenges but it’s surprising how few people realise the crucial role that internal communications can play. The benefits of breaking down internal barriers are myriad and arguably it’s now easier than ever with a host of technological solutions to complement more traditional methods.
Look back five or ten years and intranets were the technology of choice for improving internal communications, but now, in the age of the smartphone, apps are arguably the most effective and accessible tool. The statistics back up this up: over 90% of UK consumers now own a smartphone and 90% of the time spent using a mobile is now devoted to apps. With mobile phone usage in the workplace now accepted – and often encouraged – apps are a simple way to engage your workforce and help them work more profitably.
Low productivity is the bane of British business, lagging significantly behind the rest of the G7 and starkly illustrated by the fact that it takes a UK worker five days to achieve the same output as a German worker produces in four days. Working efficiently rather than getting tied up in overcomplicated processes is all about communication. Businesses which have a siloed structure of departments which don’t speak to each other, coupled with hierarchical teams which are reluctant to collaborate, are inefficient and unproductive. Ensuring there are systems and tools available to your team which make it easy for them to share expertise, knowledge and ideas fosters cooperation and breaks down both physical and emotional barriers.
How many times has the marketing department been frustrated with the finance team? How often do you hear a colleague cursing about the IT people who “just don’t get it”? Miscommunication, misunderstanding and misconception are the mothers of inefficiency, so imagine the transformation if information was shared equally and colleagues were able to work cross-functionally. The beauty of an app means that anyone with a smart phone will be equipped wherever they’re working, so if you have multiple sites, overseas facilities, or a mobile workforce, your entire team can remain connected and in touch. This process of opening up two-way internal communications enables users to provide feedback and encourages dialogue, as well as speeding up approval processes, generating debate, boosting brainstorming and facilitating decision-making.
Taking internal communications external
Remember extranets, the offspring of intranets, which brought companies closer to their external stakeholders? This process of working seamlessly with third parties is also easily achievable with an app. Open up communications with suppliers to share best practice, monitor standards, improve production efficiencies, manage the order process or identify supply chain issues, and you’ll quickly see the commercial benefits.
At the other end of the process, an app can be used as a customer service interface too, bringing your business and your customers closer together. Efficient customer relations boosts sales, enhances your reputation and provides competitive advantage, which begs the question, “What’s not to like?”
In the light of all this compelling evidence, it won’t surprise you that we have developed Communicator, an internal communications app which can do all this and more. We like to describe it as ‘your company in your pocket’ as not only does it act as a central resource for all your vital business information (policies, protocols, contacts, news, images etc.), but it can become a hub for innovation and collaboration, the place where your people can enhance their skills and contribute to the human capital of your business. We’re confident that, with Communicator at your fingertips you won’t look upon internal communications in the same way ever again. To find out how we could help you improve productivity and grow profits, please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org.