Unread emails are more than just pesky, they're problematic. Ensure your employees receive and read all important correspondence with texting.
Over the last few years, text messaging has become a popular tool for recruiters on the hunt for new talent. Your SMS efforts shouldn’t stop after the on-boarding process begins. 70% of professionals believe that texting should be used for inter-office communication. It’s time to trade up your unanswered emails, Slack messages, and Gchats for the space where communication is always happening: your cell phone. Learn how your business can leverage the power of text messaging to improve internal communications and engage with employees more efficiently.
Texting at Work
As much as we’d like to believe that everyone’s time at work is spent working, that’s unfortunately not the case. A survey conducted by staffing firm OfficeTeam found that employees spend about 56 minutes per day using their cell phones for personal business while at work. Instead of just ignoring this reality, smart managers can capitalize on this trend and turn the cell phone into a tool for communicating valuable, time-sensitive information to employees.
Why Use Texting For Employee & Internal Communication
53% of business leaders stated that a top priority was to improve internal communication channels within the upcoming year.
Yet, as more tools are developed to improve communication within organizations, leadership still struggles to implement change. That’s due in large part to things like:
- Employee’s resistance to learning new tools
- Reluctance to download apps
- Too many programs and apps to manage
- Technology fatigue
Organizations are in need of a cost-effective solution that doesn’t require any extra training or downloads by employees. The solution is under the noses (and in the pockets) of nearly everyone. And many have already discovered it.
Of those surveyed in the same study from above, nearly three quarters (73%) of respondents stated increased usage of mobile devices would be a top priority.
We attribute that response to the fact that:
- Texting costs pennies per message to send
- Virtually every cellphone can receive texts
- Texting is something familiar to everyone resulting in no learning curve
- Cellphone inboxes are typically a space for friends and family leaving it unsaturated by the noise that clogs email inboxes
- No internet required to receive messages making it great for employees on the go
- Text message communication logs can be easily kept and stored to ensure peak accountability
And even now, with fewer employees working from a traditional office space, texting serves as any easy way to keep everyone within an arms reach at all times.
How to Text Your Employees
As some of our partners in human resources have taught us, text messaging with employees is possible, but has to be handled properly and legally. Luckily, with a platform like SimpleTexting, you avoid the issue of sending a text message with your personal, private device.
All your messages are logged and secured providing you with a permanent catalog of your correspondence. This is especially important if you have multiple team members sending messages (enabled by our multi-user access feature). But more importantly, texting your employees gives your messages the attention they deserve by keeping them out of spam folders, and into a location where there’s a 98% guarantee that they’ll be read.
In order to keep those numbers high, here are a few tips for texting with your employees:
- Keep texts short and to the point
- Respect the inbox. Don’t abuse the privilege of having their cell phone number by sending out too many texts with non-essential or non-applicable information
- Avoid texting employees after work
- And finally, keep it professional! If you’re not sure how, check out these examples of professional text messages.
Examples of Text Messages to Employees
As we previously mentioned, the best texts to send to employees are ones that contain relevant and/or time-sensitive information. But what does that look like? Here are a few use cases where sending an internal communication or alert via SMS might come in handy for employers.
Things like policy changes, employee benefits, or open enrollment deadlines are crucial communications. Missing out on these updates could get an employee in serious trouble. While the initial message may still be sent out via newsletter or email, following up via text is a great way to double down. This covers your bases given that emails currently sit at about a 20% read rate.
You can even create specific keywords that employees can text in to have FAQ’s addressed. This saves your HR team time and ensures your staff is always informed. Take it a step further and create templates that respond with relevant information to avoid typing the same thing over and over.
While we don’t like to think about the worst-case scenarios, it’s still important to be prepared. If there is a lockdown, evacuation, or any other urgent situation, reach your employees instantly with an emergency text alert.
Creating a positive company culture is part of fostering a healthy and productive workplace. Ensuring your staff feels valued and appreciated results in more productivity. One study even found that happy employees are up to 20% more productive than unhappy employees!
For a simple and cost-effective way to boost office morale, turn to texting. Send out “kudos” and acknowledge a job well done to staff through text.
Solicit Employee Feedback
Sometimes you find yourself needing feedback or approval from several people before making a decision. That can result in messy email threads and unclear results. Instead, send out a simple text to vote message and collect data in a much more organized way. Additionally, increase engagement in your surveys by giving employees an easy and convenient way to participate.
A. A night in Paris
B. Mardi Gras
C. Under the sea
Do you have hourly employees or shift workers? If so you know the damage missed shifts or short staffed events can cause. Keep everyone organized by using texting as a system for work schedules.
Send Quick Reminders
Sometimes the day can slip away from us. Don’t let a meeting or phone call go unattended. Instead, send out quick reminders that can be viewed on the spot. For jobs where regular training or certifications are involved, set up automatic reminders to ensure nobody falls behind the curve.
Connect With Remote Workers
Work life in the 21st century doesn’t always look like your traditional office job. With some people traveling and others working from home, there’s still a need to keep your team in the loop. Texting is a great way to check in with these road warriors and ensure your dispersed workforce is on task with status updates.
Timesheets, invoices, and expense reports can start to pile up for any payroll specialist. Help things stay organized by sending and receiving invoices via SMS. You can also automate reminders for employees to approve timesheets and submit overtime requests.
Features of SMS Software for Internal Employee Communication
With a text messaging service like ours, you get more than just the ability to send and receive messages.
A host of other tools and features are available to every account, no matter what you pay per month. Here are a few we think might come in hand for internal communication purposes.
- Segmentation: Keep your employees organized by department, team, or any other helpful grouping. Send messages to one employee, a whole team, or the entire organization thanks to segments.
- Personalization: Include a name in your messages to create an added courtesy that makes employees feel like noticed individuals. Custom fields in messages can be created to include department names, emails, birthdays, and more.
- Link Tracking: When you use SimpleTexting’s built-in URL shortener, you have the ability to track click behavior. Find out who clicked (and who didn’t) and even take action based in that information. For example, if you sent a link with HR training materials, you can automate a follow-up message to those who didn’t click reminding them to take a look.
- Send Files: In addition to links, you can include rich media and PDFs directly in your texts.
- Snooze Conversations: Never forget to follow up to a message. You can hide conversations for a set period of time, and when the snooze period ends (or if someone replies) it will appear at the top of your Inbox.
- Keywords: Create an unlimited number of unique keywords for your businesses that, when texted in, will add subscribers to a new list. Keywords can be used for events, special updates, and more.
- Polling: Find out exactly what your employees think and feel with a simple poll. To vote, all they have to do is reply to your message. It’s both effective and time-efficient.
As important as it is to focus on external communication with customers, a system without strong internal communications is more of a (dis)organization. Sharing information with your employees via texting shows that creating an internal communications system doesn’t have to be difficult.
If you’d like to give text messaging a try, dive in with our 14-day free trial. Our SMS experts are available seven days a week to answer any questions you may have!
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