I’ve been thinking about how would could both communicate through podcasts. Certainly there are the obvious applications. If you do a corporate meeting, why not record it and make it available for download? If the President of the U.S. gets to speak to the nation weekly in his radio address, why not HR? What about coordinating the CEO to a monthly or quarterly message to address important issues? All of these ideas are easily executable, engage the employee base, and solidify your employer brand.
This idea is similar in nature to “CubicleCasts” but is narrated/hosted by HR leaders in an organization to provide an upbeat and entertaining forum to disseminate potentially dry information. Podcasts could feature interviews with employees or audio skits on how to/how not to address certain office situations. 1
Just like when companies complained that they could not deploy web open enrollment because not enough of their employees had access to the internet, I’ll give the same answer to those who say not enough employees have i-pods and MP3 players. Who cares? There’s always an alternative from letting people hear the recording from their PC’s at work, to printing the text onto a webpage if necessary.
However, I recently read another fantastic idea.
HR Podcast “Welcome Tours” can allow new hires to tour your office at their own pace. 2
I’m not saying you should replace orientation or having a current employee introduce the new hires to people and places. However, no matter how thoughtful the employee, they simply can’t do as great a job as a scripted HR person who is both trying to introduce departments, places, branding, culture, and values. For example, we’ve all walked through museums with the audio tour, “now walk right and stop in front of our company values plaque. Hit next when you are there.”
Not only could this be for new hires, but you could have a whole series of HR podcasts introducing people to the payroll process, open enrollment, and more. While someone is sitting on the subway, they can listen to you telling them how the new medical plan is better and why the company is heading this direction. Why not go crazy and create podcasts of department introductions for manager training programs. “This is the QA department and we’ll take a few moments to describe why they are important to our company and our customers.”
All too often when we’re talking technology, we’re talking about the direct applications we can make of PC’s and what goes on a PC. Today’s communicators should be thinking about PC’s, internet, cell phones, MP3 players, PDA’s, and the good old paper products as well.