2018 SOS : How Effective are Communication Channels?


Lise Michaud

We published earlier a blog post of the key results of the 2018 State of the Sector Internal Communication and Employee Engagement. This blog post looks at the results specific to channels.

A good portion of the survey focussed on communication channels and their effectiveness. Here are some of the findings.

Face-to-face channels

Face-to-Face is still one of the preferred means according to respondents and over three quarters of them use: team meetings (86%), manager/senior leader conferences (82%) and senior management visits (75%). All face-to-face channels 
were rated as very effective or effective by at least two thirds of respondents
. All employee conferences were seen as the most effective, with 83% of respondents stating they were either very effective or quite effective. Manager or senior leader conferences were also considered as one of the best-performing channels.

2018 SOS Q: How effective are face-to-face channels in your organization?

Print Channels

Posters and banners remain the preferred print channel, both in terms of usage and in terms of effectiveness. A range of ad hoc print channels are used by over half of respondents: brochures and guides (53%), flyers and leaflets (52%) and desk drops (50%). Letters / memos is viewed as least effective print channel.

2018 SOS Q: How effective are print channels in your organization?

Digital Channels

Digital channels are not nearly as effective as face-to-face, 
yet they are the most used channels in organizations. Email announcements (79%), videos (78%) and electronic newsletters (75%) were perceived to be very or quite effective by three quarters of respondents or more. All three were among the most highly used channels. External employee websites (43%) and chatbots (48%) featured in the bottom two of the most effective digital channels list, while chatbots (10%) were also the least used digital channel.

2018 SOS Q: How effective are digital channels within your organization?

Respondents say they plan to increase the use of mobile apps (73%) social networks (72%), chatbots (72%) and videos (68%).​

2018 SOS Q: Over the next 12 months, will you increase, decrease or keep their usage the same?

2018 SOS Q: How can employees currently access your internal digital channels?