Deskless employees make up over 80 percent of the global workforce. This critical workforce may feel disconnected as they miss out on company policies, up-to-date information, and its brand story. The following is a comprehensive checklist for effective internal communications to ensure you and your team are on working cohesively to achieve your set objectives:
Adopt effective technology
To quickly and effectively engage your staff, you need to identify and leverage an ideal technology platform that enables you to reach them easily on the go and wherever they are. The platform you choose should be compatible with all the available communication stacks, including digital signage, intranet, collaboration, and mobile.
A study done by the Pew Research Center reveals that over 92 percent of millennials can access smartphones. A considerable number of deskless employees drawn from this generation are more comfortable with mobile-based communication platforms than the traditional methods. They use their smartphones to conveniently check PTO balance, access the latest corporate news, and sign off compliance notifications remotely.
Use company apps
Many deskless employees prefer using branded company apps than the standard forms of communication, such as email, printed materials, or intranet. Apps are easier, more convenient, and faster mobile communication platforms. Employee apps facilitate a more efficient and direct two-way communication channel that eliminates hierarchical barriers that often slow down information flow. It also simplifies communications by making sharing easy. You can send content, share pictures, videos, voice notes, GPS location, files to and from the field's employees quite easily with these apps.
Adopt an instant feedback strategy
Don't wait for the annual reviews to engage the deskless employees. It is imperative to check in with this group regularly. Schedule for more surveys, company gatherings, events, and meetings to help you determine how the team is fairing and whether they are satisfied or not. This feedback will help you arrest problems before they get out of control. Regular meetings will also present the team with an opportunity to share their ideas and opinions regarding their work and the company. These employees are the company's face out there, and you should never ignore the feedback they are giving.
Encourage side to side communication
One sure way to make your deskless employees feel valued is by continually informing them of critical decisions and policy changes within the organization. But you will hardly achieve this if you use the old top-down communication strategy. To fully engage this team, your communication should be both top-down and sideways. Allow communication that moves from side to side among the workers and from workers to managers. If one person in your company is relied on to make announcements, then the non-desk group will be significantly disadvantaged. Typically, top-down communication gives limited opportunities for feedback. It also comes with many delays, and critical information may reach the deskless employees too late. Besides, non-desk workers prefer sharing issues and contributing to ideas. Thus the ability to communicate with each other and with the managers makes them feel valued members of the team. Also, when you create interconnected engagements, workers tend to become problem solvers rather than a problem. They also get an opportunity to share ideas and challenges among themselves and with their line managers.
To sum up, excellent internal communication provides timely feedback, which helps the management create essential company policies. Deskless employees are the frontline workers, and their actions directly impact the company image and should never be ignored. This special group doesn't work in the office and thus are not as connected as the rest of the employees. If you are looking to engage and interact more with these employees, the tips we discussed above are excellent places to start.