Let’s be friends…. Facebook for internal comms?

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Rachel's research

Let’s be friends…. Facebook for internal comms?

Do you use Facebook for internal communications (IC) within your company? Is it integrated into your channel mix or do your employees wish to keep their personal and professional lives separate? I’d love to hear what you’re doing. Do please get in touch if you’re able to share your campaigns and use of Facebook for IC with other Diary of an internal communicator readers.

Ian Harris from Gatehouse Group ran a webinar recently that focused on how to use Facebook advertising. He highlighted a feature that would work for internal comms pros to use, particularly around employee surveys.

Have your say
Employee surveys are commonplace in organisations, with great importance often placed on them by senior leaders in order to have an accurate reflection of ‘how everybody feels’. If you work in internal comms, you’ll no doubt be aware of the amount of pressure there is on you to get the response rate as high as possible in order to have a majority view of the company.

In the webinar, Ian demonstrated a tip that would enable employees to be reached via Facebook through targeted advertising directly to them. What do you think of this idea? Would you or have you used Facebook advertising for internal comms?

In my experience, the idea of working with employee survey results that represent less than half of the number of employees makes life very difficult. It’s difficult to write with a degree of accuracy about ‘what our workforce think’ and also influence decisions for improvements as you don’t know how the other half feel about key areas like strategy, vision, benefits etc.

You can obviously run focus groups separately, and I do that regularly. However within companies I try to minimise the amount of times all employees are surveyed, placing utmost importance on the employee survey as the chance for them to have their say, if that’s the culture the organisation has. It takes time to build up trust and for people to feel they can air their views, so it’s important to protect that.

What are your experiences of large annual/regular employee surveys? Do you find value in them? I know many companies have scaled them back in terms of regularity or cancelling them completely due to cost.  What works for you? My biggest bugbear is when you have the results but there is no plan of action to implement change or review them effectively. I think that undermines the process and makes the feedback seem hollow. So my biggest tip for running employee surveys is before you start, ensure there is a robust plan of action within your organisation to concentrate on and act upon the results once you have them.

Using Facebook for internal comms
Thank  you to everyone who participated in my research of how internal comms pros use social media. I’ve now analysed the results and thanks to Sequel Group, have an infographic that I’m gong to make available to you from the evening of 7 November. I’ll be highlighting the results first during my talk at the CIPR Inside Putting Employees First Internal Communications conference on 7 November, then will be releasing it.

However I’m going to give you a sneaky peek here. One of the questions I asked was: What do you use in your professional life? E.g writing/managing on behalf of your company?

You can see the results via the image on this page (opens larger if you select it). They reveal that 38.6 per cent of internal comms pros use Facebook professionally, which is on par with their use of LinkedIn. Who do you know that’s using Facebook really well for internal comms? Does that stat surprise you? It was higher than I expected it to be. I’d love to feature how internal comms pros are using all of the various sites listed. Do get in touch if you’ve got a story to tell.

Do you think the lines between internal and external comms are now blurred? You can comment below to share your thoughts or tweet me @AllthingsIC.

If you missed the Gatehouse webinar, you can catch up by watching it below, Rachel

Post author: Rachel Miller.

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