2012 Nonprofit PR Awards: Employee/Internal Communications

Winner: National Forensic Science Technology Center – NFSTC Internal Communications Renovation

When NFSTC increased its full-time staff by 61% throughout 2009/2010, it was clear that the internal communications approach in place would no longer be adequate. An internal survey found that many felt information provided at meetings was not relevant, too detailed or redundant, and the meetings were too long. And while the company’s intranet (myNFSTC) received a lot of traffic thanks to its forms and tools, it wasn’t being used for regular news. To reduce the redundancy of information and make the most of the myNFSTC intranet (homepage pictured), “big strategy” quarterly staff meetings were introduced to deliver major announcements—forward-looking communications and an executive Q&A—replacing monthly meetings. Project-based information/news were delivered via kickoff meetings, and on the intranet weekly updates for “medium” communications—staff reminders, human resources news, on-site events—were sent via a weekly update and enhanced by an audio message from the CEO. As such, staff meetings have dropped by 300 hours per quarter and the intranet has become the go-to central communications vehicle. —BM

Honorable Mentions:

American College of Cardiology Foundation – Pulse Points and Connect with Colleagues: ACCF’s Pulse Points e-newsletter was revitalized with new features; in addition, previously unfocused meetings were reconfigured to provide more timely and useful information for the staff.

American Student Assistance – Get on the Money: To launch the ASA’s SALT program, which seeks to make college students financially savvy, the ASA created an internal program that featured SALT training and introduced “SALT Money,” a fun employee competition connected to the external launch.

Georgian College – Georgian College Staff News: To better disseminate information to all areas of Georgian College, the PR team created a staff news Web site to house key information as well as to encourage staff to connect with one another.

Taco Bell Foundation for Teens and Burson-Marsteller – Igniting Employee Participation for the Cause: An employee ambassador program, a partnership with the Boys & Girls Clubs of America and a robust social media effort helped raise $3 million for the Taco Bell Foundation.