How to Calculate the ROI of Internal Communication
Amy Jenkins: Calculating ROI, we oftentimes think of as just getting to direct dollar values, right? That’s what other stakeholders within our businesses do. Marketing departments are measuring how many people did that ad campaign bring into our business? And how much money did that bring into our business?
It’s harder for IC to take things into that direct dollar line measurement because we’re so supportive of our other stakeholders and businesses. But we also know that our communication strategies and putting the correct ones in place are what help them to achieve that dollar value. We want to talk about how you can connect communication to soft ROI and to more fine dollar line ROI.
Amanda Fisher: There are often challenges when you don’t have access to hard data points. But think about how many hours of time something will save you, right? If you’re able to quantify that, even in an S estimate, right? You’re essentially rounding that number, but it gives you a number to work with to represent what you’re saving. Hours of time plus energy equals money.
Amy Jenkins: I think this is a good way to talk to about starting with objectives, right? If you don’t start with what it is you’re trying to measure and understanding do I have a hard dollar value associated with this or am I going to be looking at a soft cost measurement? So, when you identify that objective, look at: how do I determine ROI from this?
And there’s straight line connections. Like I moved from printing my quarterly newsletter to sending it out digitally. That’s really easy to say, I saved our company $20,000 in print fees. To the softer costs, which are some of the time-savings Amanda talked about. We’re looking at our stronger communication around these safety practices made our employees feel more valued, and therefore, retention is increasing. They’re not looking for other opportunities because they feel valued by the organization. That’s that more dotted line correlation to ROI that we have to work with HR to really identify and calculate.
But being able to calculate both the soft costs and that hard dollar cost, so when we sit down with the leadership team, we’re not just saying, I think, and I feel, but I know.