10 Ways to Pump Up Your HR Communication
That’s the sound of your employee communication engagement.
A new study finds that employees want HR professionals to improve how important information is communicated to them. A majority of employees, especially at larger companies, believe their current HR communication does not prepare them to make smart decisions. This is a striking revelation especially considering Americans’ current retirement savings situation—or lack thereof:
- 56% of Americans have less than $10,000 saved for retirement
- 2% of Millennials have no retirement savings
- More than half of Generation X have less than $10,000 saved for retirement
- 75% of Americans over 40 are behind on saving for retirement
HR professionals should strive to close the communication gap so that their employees make better decisions that can improve their quality of life. Whether it’s about enrolling in a 401(k) program or choosing the right dental plan, effective communication is crucial.
The good news is that your audience is ready to hear your message—employees do care about HR communication, but find it to be complex and inconvenient.
So how do you turn into an HR superhero overnight? Pump up the communication, of course!
Here are 10 ways to improve your communication for better engagement with employees:
Customize your communication.
Did you know there are currently four generation groups in the workplace? Targeted employee communications can speak directly to diverse employee demographics that have different needs and preferred styles of communication. Check out this infographic that lists each generation’s preferred communication style.
Ask “What’s in it for me?” for the employees who will receive your message.
HR communications can often be generic. Be sure you can answer this question before sending a message out to your employees.
Assume your employees know nothing.
Seriously, assume they don’t know anything—at all. Here’s a confession from a millennial in the workplace: The first time I attended a benefits meeting and heard words like “employee matching” and “high deductible plans,” I simply nodded my head and smiled so no one knew that it was all a foreign language to me. This lack of understanding led to hours of Googling and an extensive e-mail exchange with my HR professional. So, no matter how experienced or how old the employee is, breaking down the basics will save both of you time in the long run.
If you have a message you really want to “drive home,” use different channels and methods for optimal deliverability and understanding.
Provide actionable communication for every message.
Use the IAW formula (Issue, Action, What): State the issue. Clarify what action needs to be taken. Explain what happens if no action is taken.
Personalize your message.
Add a story or share your experience so employees can relate.
Follow-up with a chance for human interaction.
Your employees may have technological preferences when it comes to their communication styles, but as a basic human need, employees desire and benefit from face-to-face communication as well.
Build incentives in your communication.
Adding a reward to one of the most important messages may drive more employees to carefully read future communications.
Turn employee feedback into something.
If you ask for employee feedback, do something with it. Only survey employees if their responses will lead to an improvement they can notice in some way.
Consistency is key.
You’ll look unreliable and seem like you have a hidden agenda if your communication is inconsistent. Consistency will help build trust and engagement.
By implementing these tips, you will be able to tailor your communications for better engagement that closes the knowledge gap.
Check out our article 3 Ways to Improve Your Benefits Communication Strategy Right Now to help you better align your benefits communication strategy with that of your entire business.