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Moving Forward in Harmony: Recap of Forward ’22

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 — November 16th, 2022

Moving Forward in Harmony: Recap of Forward ’22

Poppulo’s Forward ’22 conference explored the latest in the digital signage, communications, and workplace management fields—and highlighted how Poppulo customers are using the platform to overcome workplace challenges today.

Here's an overview of the topics discussed, key takeaways, and top tips from communications professionals.

Creating Targeted Experiences for Employees

The first step in the communications planning journey is to identify the different audiences you communicate with. The comms plan you design must help you reach everyone in the way that works best for them—and different groups of people will have different preferences regarding what, how, and when you communicate with them.

The Staggering Financial Impact of Communication on Employee & Customer Experience

The key is to understand which channels work best for which audiences. In the session titled How to Create a Winning Brand with Your Entire Workforce, Finola Bradley, the Director of Product Management at Poppulo, highlighted the communications planning journey for a fictional clothing retailer.

In this example, the company had employees distributed between corporate offices, retail store locations, warehouses, and distribution centers. Each of these employee groups required different channel mixes for their comm. Office workers can be best reached with email, collaboration tools, and some in-office digital signage.

In contrast, retail workers primarily rely on back-of-house signage and mobile devices for information, and warehouse workers almost exclusively rely on digital signage while on the factory floor.

But the communications experience is created by more than just the channels you use—it’s not meaningful unless the content you deploy is relevant, and employees actually engage with it.

For Schneider Electric, a global sustainable energy services company, safety in its supply chain is a top priority. But Schneider is also committed to becoming the digital partner for efficiency and sustainability, and creating a company culture that supports its mission and employee wellbeing is a key priority for communicators.

By leveraging digital signage in its supply chains, the communications team can deploy a balance of safety information, key production stats, and engaging content for employees to ensure they’re receiving the info they need to be successful, plus the info they want to feel valued and connected to company goals.

Highlighting the Customer Experience

Organizations today increasingly realize that employee experience is interlinked with customer experience, and the latter is defined by the former.

In the session Innovation in Action: Going Beyond the Expected with Digital Signage, Jen Jacobs, Digital Marketing Manager at Adventist Health, highlighted how they’re using digital signage throughout health clinics in 80 different communities to communicate with both employees and patients.

By implementing wayfinding signage, directories, café menu screens, waiting room signage, and breakroom screens for employees, they have fostered greater internal engagement, improved the patient experience, and generated efficiencies in daily operations.

Link your Communications Strategy with Business Initiatives

At the end of the day, profitability is the bottom line for almost every company. If you can’t prove that you’re contributing value to the business, your worth declines.

So it’s critical to understand the priorities of the stakeholders at your business and tie your plan back to those initiatives to get buy-in from the people that matter.

Many of the stakeholders at your organization might care solely about profit and revenue. But others care about customer retention, market share, risk reduction, performance improvement, employee turnover rates, and more. And the truth is that communications can significantly impact any of these priorities—but you have to tell the right story to connect the dots.

Decision makers will always ask, what’s in it for me? And the best way to prove your value to them is by demonstrating value with data. Let’s dive into how you can prove your value by measuring the impact of your comms.

Measure Your Impact to Prove Your Value

Many companies don’t know the quantitative impact of their communications. But with the right platform and strategy, it’s easy to quantify.

At the session From Employee Engagement to Workplace Experience: Lessons from the Field, Jared Curtis, the Director of Communications at Maximus, highlighted how his team is leveraging the Poppulo Harmony platform to expand comms from an email-only strategy to a data-driven, omnichannel approach​ that includes mobile, digital signage, and integration with internal tools like SharePoint.

By continuing to link the comms strategy back to Maximus’ strategic initiatives and using data to demonstrate the value of a real omnichannel communications approach, Jared was able to prove the ROI of the solution and negotiate budget to implement the program.

The comms team at Maximus collects qualitative, quantitative, and organic data, including:

  • Click rates
  • Open rates
  • Engagement rates
  • Time on page
  • Pulse surveys
  • Informal employee feedback

And more.

After rethinking the comms strategy, the team saw a +10% increase in open rate on email comms from 70% to 80%, plus longer page times and increased engagement.

They can also break down the data to see how it changes with different employee groups, at different types of facilities, and in different geographies to understand what types of employees are engaging best with their content.

Partner with Your Technology Team

Most communicators know that communications and technology have merged in today’s world. And COVID-19 forced businesses to become even more reliant on technology.

But when it comes to choosing the right tech stack to support your goals, there are a ton of options available, and many communicators don’t know where to start.

But you have the internal resources to help make the right decision. Turn to the people who know the technology best to find the right solution for your company.

According to Kathryn Gendall, Director of Collaboration Systems at Newmont Corporation—the world's largest gold mining company—the key is to ask your technology team to help find a solution that will help solve your problems without creating more headaches for them. Lean on them to guide you, and they’ll help you layer the right tools to support your strategy.

COVID-19 thrust communications into the spotlight. How we communicate and interact with the workplace has changed—and will continue to do so.

This article has highlighted some of the ways that companies are overcoming common challenges related to employee and customer comms, and how we’re interacting in today’s workplace—but we have more to share.

To learn more about how Poppulo can help your company bring harmony to your employees and customers, contact us here, and one of our experts will reach out to talk.

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