How to master internal communications: know your metrics

By Aimee Happ
December 31, 2020
4 min read

Knowing your internal communications strategy will help set the stage for the rest of your IC activities. Our latest blog series is a deep dive into each of the 7 Principles in our 7 Principles Methodology! The aim of this series is to help you become a masterful internal communicator, no matter your experience level.

Today’s principle is detailed and comprehensive: metrics!

Internal comms metrics definition

The State of the Sector 2020 report found that less than 20% of communications professionals regularly track the impacts of their internal comms efforts.

The metrics principle looks at the what, how, and why of measurement for your internal communication activities.

What constitutes a successful internal communications campaign? The number of email opens? Interactions? A happier office?

Historically, internal communications metrics have been limited to things like a few questions on an annual employee survey. Nowadays, metrics present an opportunity for internal communications professionals to be better equipped to study what’s working and what needs to be fixed. Ask yourself:

  • What do you need to know?
  • What can you measure with the tools available?
  • What information do you need to tie your activities to broader organizational goals?

Know your objectives

Maybe you want to increase email response rates as your team works from home, or perhaps it’s to keep staff informed of company updates while they’re away from the office.

A 2020 IoIC survey found that the top communication channels with employees during COVID-19 were internal social media, video conferencing, and surveys. Unsurprisingly, all three of these channels are screen-based or virtual.

Knowing your organization’s most popular channels—with help from a comprehensive channel strategy—will help you figure out which specific metrics pertain to your team and objectives.

With our internal communications software with multi-channel messaging capabilities, administrators can see open rates, action rates, average response times, and more. This is valuable data that can indicate best times to send an email and which communication methods are most convenient for remote staff, for example.

If you don’t already have the tools you need, why not try software that can do the hard work for you? Use this internal communication metrics tool to get started.

Woman strategizing how to improve internal communications

Know the internal communications metrics that matter most

Currently, what internal communicators need are ways to translate the inherent messiness of communication into a measurable line item, or—metric! Here are a few of the most important ones:

Employee satisfaction

This one is the most straightforward. It’s usually understood through employee surveys and polls.

According to Gallup, employee engagement and productivity continue to be important predictors of company performance, even in a tough economy.

Employee retention & referrals

Employees who are informed and feel their voices are heard and appreciated are more likely to stick with the company and to recommend it to others.

Customer satisfaction

Employees who are fully equipped with the information they need to do their job well are able to provide a better customer experience. Since most companies are already tracking this metric, internal comms professionals already have a baseline to work from.

Study & monitor your data

Monitoring a set of metrics will allow you to gauge the success of a communications campaign. Furthermore, when you look at all the data together, you can see the bigger picture and track the success of your communications efforts. Here are important questions to ask when analyzing data:

  • What were the most successful campaigns?
  • What about their specific messaging made them perform better than the rest?
  • How can this be implemented in future campaigns for better results?

Tying these back to your company’s overall objectives is key to delivering value!

Why internal communications metrics are important

Only by defining and setting metrics to measure a campaign’s success will you know the difference between a job well done and messages sent into oblivion.

Metrics should directly correlate to the goals you set in your initial internal communications strategy. You might not be able to measure a happier office in numbers, but you can identify engagement metrics. This information is extremely useful in gauging which messages are the most effective.

The Internal Communications Assessment

Feeling overwhelmed and out of depth in your internal communications role? Take our 5-minute Internal Communications assessment!

Gain valuable insights and resources to help you improve your internal comms strategy, so you can build a collaborative, efficient, and morale-boosting work environment.

You’ll also walk away with a detailed scorecard, complete with handy resources to improve your internal communications overall.

Click here to take the assessment.
By Aimee Happ

Aimee Happ is proud to lead the marketing team at IC and enjoys working with the dynamic and diverse team that surrounds her. She is inspired on a daily basis by the company's mission of empowering internal communicators. Aimee holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Calgary and loves to travel.