CommsTools – A Free Resource for Internal Communicators

Post by Caitlin Draper-Wheeler, SnapComms

Thursday 9 March 2017

If you ever get stuck for ideas and different ways to communicate with staff or a large group, don’t worry – help is at hand!

CommsTools is a brand new online tool that lists a multitude of ways to communicate. (Tip: All Internal Communicators should bookmark this site now!). This free directory lists well over a hundred ways, old and new, free and paid-for, to get information out there.

The easy-to-use site is divided into three sections: electronic; face-to- face; and print. Strengths and weaknesses for each section are included, followed by an alphabetical list of all the available channels.

  • Electronic – this comprises tactics that use some form of electronic/digital technology, e.g. SMS for mobile phones, scrolling newsfeeds for breaking news, desktop alerts for important or urgent notifications, gamification for staff incentives, and more.
  • Face-to-face – this section includes activities that involve direct, interpersonal interaction. Everything from running buzz groups to senior management walkabouts.
  • Print – this section outlines a range of tactics, everything from branded goodies right through to wallet cards.

For each channel, there’s a full description: what the tactic is useful for; when to use it; things to consider when using this tactic; and helpful tips. For example, organisations that want to increase the visibility of their leadership team can source ideas by browsing the face-to-face section. Breakfast briefings, walkabouts, and open forums are just a few of the 35 suggestions provided.

The site also includes a handy section outlining the five steps that support a performance-based, outcome-focused approach. This helps to select the right channel for the right message, to meet campaign objectives.

CommsTools has been created by SnapComms, an internal communications software company, in response to the universal challenge internal communicators face with message penetration.

They say that getting employee attention is much harder nowadays, as staff contend with bloated email inboxes and information overload. Consequently, it’s all-too-common for important messages to be completely missed by staff. This resource provides lots of different ways to capture attention and ensure messages stick! Compilers of the directory hope the resource will be used by ‘everyone who needs to communicate to a wider group’. This includes government agencies, corporates and NGOs, universities and educational establishments, charities, sports clubs, associations and more.

Commenting on the launch, SnapComms CEO, Sarah Perry said, “In a time when there are so many channels available to communicators, and so much noise to contend with, having a resource that can help to pick the most efficient method for reaching your audience is vital. CommsTools.com helps communicators find the best ways to engage their audiences, whether that means adopting new software, or just sticking with reliable email campaigns.”

She adds: “Every week it seems there is a new tool or app that is the ‘latest and greatest’ way to communicate with employees; a silver bullet to all communications woes that rarely lives up to its hype. But what are often forgotten about are some of the simplest ways to communicate with employees; sometimes, communicators just need to be reminded of what those methods are.”

SnapComms also encourage the IC community to add their own suggestions to the directory, ensuring it will always stay relevant and up-to-date.