#InsideAdvent – Day 24



We’ve reached our last #InsideAdvent treat. We really hope you’ve enjoyed this feature and have found it useful. Today’s advent is all about the future and what we predict may happen with Internal Comms in 2018. We’d love to hear your thoughts on this as well so please tweet/Facebook/email your predications to us.

Our internal communication predictions for 2018

It’s been another busy year for the CIPR Inside Committee, and we’ve enjoyed looking back at some of our highlights from 2017 during #InsideAdvent. We hope that some of the ideas we’ve shared have been useful and inspired you to deliver great internal communications in 2018.

As we draw our countdown to Christmas to a close, our thoughts are also now turning to 2018 and how CIPR Inside can best support you and our growing community of internal communication professionals in the future. The committee will be holding a planning meeting on 9 January, and you still have a chance to help us shape what we will offer next year by completing our short survey.

They say that change is inevitable, and with this in mind here are a few predictions from some of the committee for internal communications and employee engagement in 2018 and beyond.

Best wishes for Christmas and the New Year from us all.

CIPR Inside Committee 2017

‘I think 2018 will be a year of opportunity for internal communicators. With a large number of companies still to publish their gender pay gaps and GDPR looming on the horizon, there has never been a bigger opportunity for our industry to demonstrate the value we can add. These are huge, visible topics that will matter to senior leaders and we need to be prepared, confident and assertive – not waiting to be invited to contribute but seizing the moment and driving the strategy for change.’ Helen Deverell MCIPR @helendeverell

‘Over the last couple of years, we’ve seen Internal Comms being increasingly recognised as a crucial and strategic function and less of a haphazard or ad hoc ‘postbox’. Whilst this is, for the most part, a great shift in C-level perception, on the flip side we’ll see senior executives expecting more detail around where we add value. With increased profile, I think IC will be expected to show greater alignment to business strategy, to engage in activity that is driven by data (not necessarily communications data), and, inevitably, to demonstrate our impact through rigorous measurement.’ Fa Mafi MCIPR @famplified

‘I think 2018 will see us focus more on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and workplace culture with a specific focus on how employee engagement plays a role in corporate reputation. If we look back to the research we published this year, we know that senior leaders see culture as a core role for the internal comms function. We also know from talking to CEOs and Comms Directors across the UK that reputation and risk remain high on the agenda and I think 2018 will demonstrate the important role internal comms practitioners can play in this element of business strategy.’ Jenni Field FCIPR @mrsjennifield

‘I’d say the immediate future of internal communication is all about creating trust internally and externally and helping to reverse the trust crisis that is affecting so many institutions and organisations these days.

One thing that really stood out for me in the 2017 Edelman Trust Barometer was the finding that the employee is now the most credible spokesperson on every aspect of a company’s business, even financial matters. This puts internal communications front and centre in developing well informed and engaged employees who can represent the organisational brand. To do that we have a big role to play in developing alignment between external and internal brand values and catalysing the behaviours that demonstrate these.

Consistency in values and ‘doing what you say you are’ across internal and external boundaries will create trust.’ Martin Flegg Chart.PR @martinflegg

‘I have really enjoyed being part of the CIPR Inside committee this year including getting together with fellow professionals at our events including Ask The Guru, the AGM and our conference. My hope for 2018 is that we continue to see our fantastic internal communications community grow and we continue to contribute to the body of knowledge to support internal communications professionals at every stage of their career.

It has also been great in 2017 to see so many people enjoying and getting so much out of dedicated internal communications qualifications. I would like to see more of this knowledge being shared and used across our community in 2018.’ Jane Revell Chart.PR @JaneRevellIC

‘My prediction for 2018 is that internal communication will have a stronger position in managing and delivering change within organisations. I believe that internal communication will be more readily recognised as integral to the success of change programmes. This means we must be clear on our approach and the value we add in this area. Change will become even more mainstream and diverse, and IC will need to step up to the challenge to support and advise leaders and organisations as they transition.’ Trudy Lewis Chart.PR @lewiscomms

‘I expect 2018 will see internal communicators take a step back. With a plethora of apps, channels and technologies to choose from – for both internal communicators and employees – I think (and hope) that as professional communicators we’ll take a ‘back to basics’ approach.
Let’s focus on our audiences, our messages and the desired outcomes first and foremost. Once we’ve assessed the who, what and why we can then look at the how.’ Paul Summerhill MCIPR Dip.CIPR @PaulSummerhill

‘I wouldn’t be surprised to see more of an uplift in hybrid communication roles, where internal communicators will be expected to support and advise our organisations on even more external regulatory and policy engagement. In 2018 alone we have the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), as well as Brexit activity … to name a few instances.’ Lisa J Waterman MCIPR @lisajwaterman

‘I have two predictions for next year.

The importance of preparing organisations for GDPR will ramp up before its introduction in May 2018. Internal communicators need to be working closely with teams to help prepare employees for the changes this legislation will bring.

As the noise on external social media channels grows, the value of internal communication channels that can really target and engage employees will grow.’ Janet Morgan MCIPR @jbmorang

‘In the last 12 months we’ve seen our Internal Communication community grow across CIPR Inside and I hope this growth continues throughout 2018 as it’s been great meeting people we wouldn’t normally have crossed paths with – I’ve learnt so much in 2017 from others! Which is why I hope we see more regional/local events in 2018, so people who can’t travel for networking still have the opportunity to meet other like-minded individuals, regardless of where they live.

In terms of predictions, I think in 2018 we will see more IC practitioners step into the limelight a bit more and shout about the great work they do. The days of pushing for a ‘seat’ at the board table are diminishing and more IC’ers are now realising actions speak much louder than words. Sometimes it’s just best to ‘crack on’ and start making a difference rather than waiting to be invited or told. This in turn will hopefully allow leaders understand the impact we can have in an organisation and then the door to the boardroom will be left wide open!’ Advita Patel MCIPR @Advita_p

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