How to Measure the Effectiveness of Your Internal Communications Plan

February 10, 2021

By Kelley Briggs
If you think about it, every day we get out of bed means another day of having our performance measured. Whether you complete a project before the deadline at work or exceed the amount of time you typically ride a stationary bike at the gym, measuring success is an integral part of life. Even our kids measure us, although their measurements tend to be a bit on the subjective side.

When it comes to measuring the performance of a communication plan for an employee recognition program, you have several ways to gauge the success of your communication goals.

Overview of a Communication Plan

When you plan a family vacation, you create a roadmap of where you want to go and when you want to get there. The same principle applies to a communication plan and internal communication strategy. You develop a roadmap – an internal communication plan template – and answer the following questions.

  • What are the goals?
  • Who is the target audience – key stakeholders?
  • How often do you want to communicate with your target audience?
  • Which members of your leadership team are responsible for communication?
  • What internal communication tools do you want to use to deliver the message effectively?

After you establish a strategy for implementing an employee communication plan for your recognition program, the next phase of the process is to decide on how you plan to measure the success of the internal comms plan.

Did the Target Audience Receive the Communication?

Since email remains the most popular method for communicating with professional peers, you can gain insight into how many of your team members received a particular message. A few of your emails might have gone to the wrong email address and then immediately bounced back into your inbox as failed deliveries.

You have to make sure your target audience receives your communications regardless of the method used to communicate. Otherwise, any information that you release about an employee recognition event goes unread and you lack informed employees. The key goal is to obtain your employees’ feedback.

When Did the Target Audience Access the Communication?

You might send out an email message that describes an upcoming employee appreciation day. You discover that every one of the messages reached the right employee. The issue now is to find out when each recipient of an email message opened the message. You can use a real-time analytics tool that tells you the date and time an employee opened an email message. A real-time analytics tool also lets you know which employees sent the email message straight to the trash bin.

Did the Target Audience Understand the Main Points of the Communication?

Personal interactions allow savvy managers to read the non-verbal cues that tell us much more than what comes out of someone’s mouth. Digital communication eliminates the non-verbal component of communicating with your team. The most effective way to measure whether your message got across to your team members is to include a sentence or two that asks for an employee's feedback or any questions. You can also embed a survey into an email that asks questions about an upcoming recognition event that you have described in the same message.

How Can You Improve Your Communication?

Look at your communication plan for an employee recognition program as a constantly running loop. At the end of the loop is an assessment of how you can make your communication plan more effective at reaching the target audience. Analyze what messages worked and what messages did not work. Then, make the changes required to make your communication plan clear, concise, and persuasive.

The Bottom Line

You devise an employee recognition program that keeps your employees feeling engaged at their workplace. From celebrating milestones to highlighting performance achievements, recognizing employees goes a long way toward establishing a successful retention program and increases overall employee engagement. However, if you fail to measure the impact of your communication plan, all the innovative ideas that you came up with for an employee recognition program might never reach your target audience.

Implement simple, yet comprehensive measurements for a communication plan to improve how you communicate your company’s employee recognition program and improve your overall company culture.