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Key Takeaways from the Inside Insight 2024 Report on Internal Communications

The world of internal communications has evolved significantly over the past two decades. The Inside Insight 2024 report from VMA GROUP provides an good look at how the profession has changed since 2006, what the future may hold, and the crucial role of change communications.

Here are some of the key findings of the survey, which is based on a 2023 survey of about 600 UK-based internal comms professionals.


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From 2006 to 2023: The More Things Change...

Comparing survey data from 2006 and 2023 reveals some notable shifts, while other aspects have remained remarkably consistent:

  • Email reigns supreme. Despite the rise of social media and collaboration platforms, email remains the most popular internal comms channel, even more so than in 2006. Intranets and town halls round out the top 3.

  • Leadership attitudes have improved. In 2006, under half of respondents felt leadership valued internal comms. By 2023, that number jumped to 77%. However, IC budgets only tend to increase when CEOs are strong advocates.

  • Planning makes perfect. Around 1 in 5 respondents in both 2006 and 2023 said they had no formal IC plan. Those without a plan rate their digital comms poorly compared to those who plan and review regularly. (...if only an easy-to-use internal comms plan template were available 🤔)

Future Forecast: Challenges & Opportunities

Looking ahead, 84% of respondents expect demand for internal comms to increase in the next 12 months. However, only 21% anticipate a corresponding budget increase. This disparity presents both a challenge and an opportunity for IC professionals to prove their value to leadership.

Emerging technologies like AI will play a growing role, though adoption remains in the early stages. IC teams will need to stay on top of tech advancements while still leveraging core human communication skills that machines can't replicate.

Navigating Change: A Specialty for IC

Nearly 80% of interim IC contracts focus on change communications rather than business as usual. Mergers, HR/people impacts, IT changes and more require the steady hand of skilled communicators to help organizations navigate disruption.

Change comms also emerged as the second most important IC skill for 2023. As the pace of change accelerates, deep expertise in this specialty will remain in high demand and provide opportunities for IC professionals to position themselves as strategic advisors.

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The Inside Insight 2024 report shows an internal communications profession that has made strides in some areas, while still facing familiar challenges in others. By embracing change, sharpening planning skills, building C-suite advocacy and developing future-ready competencies, IC teams can seize the opportunities ahead and continue advancing their positive impact. The road forward is bright for those willing to adapt and innovate.

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