Mobile e-Learning and online staff inductions
Primary Image recently attended an event on the “mobilisation” of Internal Communications and online staff training (also known as e-learning). The day was held in Shaftsbury Avenue with representatives from many of the UK’s leading companies and high street brands.
A quick poll of over 60 people in attendance showed that only one person didn’t hold a smartphone! It’s clear that the majority of people use their smartphones to fill in “dead time”, i.e. time that you’re waiting for a train, stood in a queue, etc.
A presentation from B&Q explained that using a new online e-training platform had reduced costs considerably, compared to before when they ran day or residential training courses for employees travelling across the country. The mobile learning solution they now use also means staff on the shop floor can refer to the knowledge base whilst giving customer service.
John Hague from Waitrose demonstrated their online staff induction website, which employees are required to read before they join the company. This has helped ensure induction training has been made more consistent across their hundreds of sites. (Unfortunately, on my 7-inch tablet, the layout hasn’t been tested well and it’s impossible to get to the login form – but I’m sure they’ll fix that soon!).
E-learning software can be delivered very cost effectively. If you have any requirements for mobile friendly e-learning software, then get in touch!
Using Twitter for Internal Comms
Ian James from the Starcom Media Group interestingly said his company uses Twitter for internal comms. They use Twitter to communicate their company values and messages, as well as detailing case studies of recent projects.
Some discussion followed afterwards on whether it’s appropriate for internal comms messages to be seen in public. Ian responded by saying they have nothing to hide and the messages can have a multi-purpose to support their customer and corporate comms too, but he said obviously nothing confidential would be shared on an open social network.
Intranets are great, but don’t forget printed media!
Attending a separate event, at the Southend Business Partnership meeting earlier this year, we listened to Kate Willard from the Stobart Group (owner of Southend Airport and the well known logistics firm).
Kate explored how to keep your workforce happy and motivated, including advice on having effective internal communications. She said that whilst having a well designed intranet site is important, this isn’t always the best method to reach frontline staff and therefore the company reintroduced a periodic glossy printed magazine to ensure their company messages were getting out to all parts of the workforce.
So remember good internal communications is about using a mix of media appropriate to your organisation’s size and audience, which may involve both an intranet site and a printed magazine, as well as posters, email newsletters and other media. You can also convey your company values through things like desktop backgrounds, pens and more!
Mike is the founding director of Primary Image. He specialises in the WordPress website platform and speaks regularly at national web design conferences. Mike became a member (MCIPR) of the Chartered Institute of Public Relations in 2015. Outside of work, his interests include photography and politics.