15 Terrifying Internal Communications Facts and Figures

Good internal communications is highly valued by successful leaders, with it delivering numerous positive business benefits, from higher levels of staff retention through to increased revenue. So it really pays to effectively communicate with employees, and as it stands, most U.K employees (60%) rate their employer’s internal communications as excellent. Just 10% regard it as very poor. However, organisations can still do more to improve how they communicate with their people and engage them with their purpose, strategy and goals.

Here are some of the worrying realities of disengagement, and the many challenges internal communications professionals are faced with as they battle to improve engagement levels and their employees’ everyday experience.

1. Disengaged employees cost the world an unbelievable £7.1 trillion ($8.8 trillion) in lost productivity - That’s 9% of global GDP with Gallup stating that this is enough to make the difference between success and a failure for humanity!!

2. 59% of the world’s employees are quiet quitting (nearly 6 in 10 employees). According to Gallup: “These employees are filling a seat and watching the clock. They put in the minimum effort required, and they are psychologically disconnected from their employer. Although they are minimally productive, they are more likely to be stressed and burnt out than engaged workers because they feel lost and disconnected from their workplace.” In fact, quiet quitting is a growing issue and could prove hugely problematic for economic growth as researchers at LSE state that “unpaid overtime has been a key contributor to business productivity since the 2008 global financial crisis.” 

3. A quarter of organisations have no dedicated budget for internal communications. This suggests that a quarter of businesses simply don’t value the power of internal communications and its bottom-line benefits. Research shows that increasing employee engagement investmentsby 10% can raise business profits by up to £1,937 ($2,400) per employee per year, and so not having a dedicated internal comms budget is inhibiting organisational growth.

4. 33% of UK organisations either don’t have a dedicated internal communications team, or their employees aren’t aware of there being one. If organisations are without dedicated internal communications professionals, internal comms becomes a bolt-on responsibility for already stretched marketing and/or HR teams. And with it being given such a low priority, employee disengagement is far more likely.

5. 42% of people suffer from burnout, stress and fatigue as a result of communication issues in their business. Transparency breeds trust and understanding and so it’s only natural that the opposite is also true – if employees aren’t kept informed of the company’s plans and any changes that may impact them, they are more likely to feel anxious about their job and their future at the company. It’s therefore crucial for organisations to use effective communications channels that keep everyone informed and updated, regardless of where and when they’re working.

6. 86% of employees believe ineffective communication is the underlying reason for workplace failures. According to Fierce Inc that carried out the research, “Workplace communication problems are not unique to any industry sector or rung on the corporate ladder. These issues slow down projects, productivity, and ultimately impact client retention, employee retention, and the bottom line.”

7. Ineffective communication costs over £12,000 ($15,000) per employee in lost productivity. It’s important to remember that poor communications can directly result in lost revenue. After all, when employees don’t readily have the information and resources to hand to do their jobs effectively, they will take longer to deliver results and may even have to redo work.

8. 54% of remote workers report that poor communication impacts their trust in leadership. A leader's ability to inspire and motivate employees is based on trust and when this is lost, employees are more likely to become disengaged and less productive. As trust and transparency are intrinsically linked, regular communication between the leadership team and employees is crucial, especially when working apart!

9. Only 45% of UK workers are both clear on their organisation’s strategy and believe it’s the right one for them. So why is this? Either the organisation is without a strategy or it’s only communicated to a chosen few. Either way, a thriving organisation is impossible if employees aren’t clear about what the organisation is looking to achieve and feel part of the company’s success. Engaging workers with the company’s strategy and its goals is therefore key, and internal comms has a vital role to play here.

10. Only 54% of UK employees trust the communications they receive from their organisation’s CEO. Again, trust issues are crucial if employees are to be inspired to do their best, and so if the CEO isn’t trusted then there are fundamental issues with the leadership team and organisational culture. Looking at the nature of the communications from the CEO must be reviewed as part of the organisation’s drive to improve trust.

11. Half of UK workers do not feel that their organisation accepts and welcomes honest feedback, particularly in large organisations.  A feedback culture gives employees a voice, which creates a culture of understanding, empowerment and belonging. Nurturing a feedback culture while providing channels to enable this, such as through the company intranet, should be an organisational priority.

12. The average professional gets around 121 emails every day. While email remains an important communications tool, it’s often overused leading to email overload.

13. The average employee spends 1 hours a day reading, writing, and managing emails. That’s more than half the average workday! Organisations need to review their use of email and determine whether alternative channels would be better for certain types of communication, such as sharing news and company information.

14. Just 75% of organisations have an intranet (this reduces to 55% for organisations with less than 500 employees). This means that a quarter of organisations with over 500 employees are without an effective platform for company-wide communications and connections. Without an intranet in place, any internal communications strategy is immediately on a back footing!

15. Only 58% of organisations are satisfied with their intranet. Unfortunately, many organisations still use old intranet platforms rather than modern ones, meaning they aren’t fit for purpose. Every internal communications strategy requires an agile social intranet for supporting a great employee experience, allowing everyone to store documents, read news and updates, provide feedback, obtain advice and support, connect with others, and so on.

Internal communications professionals have a vital role to play, from supporting and strengthening company strategy and purpose through to nurturing a strong sense of community and belonging. They can only do this with ongoing support from the leadership team and the right communications infrastructure in place, such as a modern intranet. Organisations that don’t prioritise internal communications will experience the terrifying impacts – company-wide disengagement, quiet quitting, a burnt-out workforce and productivity in a downward spiral. Of course, it’s never too late to turn things around, so why not take the first step and chat to one of Sorce’s intranet experts today?



Paula Darch

Paula is our marketing whizz and is passionate about intranet engagement and getting the most out of your intranet software.