The Entrepreneurs

Poor visual communication affecting business morale and productivity

  • Written by Chloe Fitzgerald


YOUR COMMUNICATIONS TO MILLENNIALS IS FAILING

 

New research reveals failing to focus on visual communication threatens productivity and engagement levels

 

Many Australian businesses are failing with their communications to the largest generation in the workforce – millennials – and it’s affecting morale and productivity. New research by software company TechSmith, finds:

 

  • Millennials are twice as likely to want to use more visual communications methods at work compared to baby boomers
  • Businesses are falling short, with 44% of millennials believing their company's communications are outdated
  • New scientific research reveals poor visual communications threaten productivity and engagement levels — not just with millennials, but with workers of all ages.
  • One in two Australians say they would understand information more efficiently at work if their company increased visual communications

 

The research, which surveyed 4,500 office workers across six countries, including 500 Australian office workers, reveals that younger workers prefer communications with more visual content — such as screenshots, screencasts, images, gifs, and short videos — when compared to other generations in the workforce.

 

Millennials are twice as likely as Baby Boomers to use images and video to communicate in their own time outside of work (58% vs. 28%). And they are twice as likely to want more visual communications at work (43% compared to 19%).

 

Australian employees were one of the most progressive workforces surveyed, with video communication and collaboration in the workplace being most called for by Australians compared with other countries that participated in the study.

 

The study also found the Australian workforce placed a strong focus on work-based social networks, with 26% of Aussie companies investing in these channels over the last few years, compared with only 16% in the United States.

 

Wendy Hamilton, CEO at TechSmith, comments:

“Social platforms like Facebook and Instagram, which rely heavily on visual content for engagement, are the go-to way of connecting outside of work because this is how people prefer to communicate. Not only that, using images, screencasts and videos in workplace communications makes it easier to get a message across clearly and concisely.

 

“With millennials making up the largest generation in the workforce and Generation Z now moving through organisations too, it’s time leaders sat up and adapted to their new, image-hungry audiences.”

 

Despite these findings, the research also shows that most employees believe their workplaces focus heavily on text-only email for internal communications. In fact, 47% of millennials say their company relies on plain-text email to communicate, with 44% saying their company's communications are outdated.

 

Other key findings confirm the demand for more visual content:

  • 67% of millennials want to use more image-based tools at work
  • 60% want to adopt video tools
  • 50% are keen to watch more short videos
  • 49% want to see more animated gifs used in the workplace

 

Only 30% of Australian employees believe they have access to the tools to communicate effectively in their role, showing a real opportunity for businesses to boost productivity by communicating better and faster with their employees.

 

The research shows outdated communication has real-world consequences, sometimes leading to poor motivation and morale. Despite spending fewer years in the workforce, millennials are more likely than other generations to have been demotivated by poor company communications (43% compared to 35% of Gen X and 27% of baby boomers).

 

Adding visual content to company communications can sound daunting, especially for those who are new to creating images and video, there are a number of simple ways to get started.

 

Wendy Hamilton, CEO at TechSmith, comments:

“If you’re new to creating visual content, the key is to start small. Don’t overwhelm yourself or your employees by requiring all messages to include visuals. You could start by taking screenshots and marking them up to show changes you’d like to see on the company website, or make a short screencast video of how to access your new online HR system, etc. As you learn how simple it can be, I think you’ll find an organic and natural path to discovering how visuals can help your business better communicate.”

 

Here comes the science

 

Businesses that fail to unlock the value of visual communications seriously risk holding back productivity and engagement levels.

 

New scientific research reveals that communications that include visual content such as screenshots, screencasts, or videos are better, faster and more engaging than plain text for nearly all employees — not just millennials.

 

  • Two-thirds (67%) of employees are better at completing tasks when information includes text with images or video than by communications featuring text alone.
  • What’s more, employees absorb information 7% more quickly when they are communicated with using text with static images than when provided only with text.
  • Overall, companies would see an 8% improvement in accuracy by using text coupled with visuals – and a 6% improvement by using video.

 

Wendy Hamilton, CEO at TechSmith, comments:

“When compounded per employee over every hour of every work day, the time and productivity that can be saved by communicating visually truly begins to add up.”

 

Dr. Alastair Goode, who led the scientific research, adds:

“More than half the human brain is involved in visual processing so visuals play a huge role in our ability to communicate. This research shows that, in a business scenario, visual communication prompts a deeper level of understanding and a more engaging experience for audiences.”

 

“With our propensity for visualization, it is no surprise that infographics, screenshots, screencasts, gifs, and short videos have become so popular — and also means people are becoming more accustomed to absorbing information visually than ever before.”

 

The complete research findings can be found at: https://www.techsmith.com/blog/research-reveals-millennials-communication-needs/


ABOUT TECHSMITH CORPORATION

Founded in 1987, TechSmith Corporation provides practical business and academic software products that can dramatically change how people communicate and collaborate. Its mission is to empower people to create remarkable videos and images that help share knowledge and information. TechSmith enables users to work more effectively wherever they may be and ensures that the process of creating, sharing and collaborating around content is simple and intuitive so that others can learn from their knowledge. Learn more at https://www.techsmith.com/ and follow @TechSmith on Twitter for the latest news.

 

ABOUT THE RESEARCH

The scientific laboratory test was conducted amongst 125 office workers in January 2018 by an award-winning doctor in behavioural economics, Dr. Alastair Goode.

 

Participants were asked to complete three everyday office tasks:

  • Uploading a post to a website
  • Downloading new software
  • Filling in their expenses forms

 

For each task, one-third of the test subjects were communicated with at random by:

  • Plain text (for example a text-only email)
  • Text with static images (for example an email with text and annotated screenshots of the tasks)
  • Video (for example a recorded walkthrough of the task with voiceover)

 

Participants were measured scientifically on their understanding, recall and speed, and the results for each type of communication were compared. Participants were also examined on their engagement levels and questioned on ease-of-use.

 

The business research surveyed 4500 office workers across six countries/regions in December 2017, including - Australia (500), Canada (500), DACH region (1,000), France (500), UK (1,000), US (1,000).

 

The generational data was analysed according to age and gender (split by generation: Before 1928, 1928 - 1945, 1946 - 1964, 1965 - 1980, 1981 - 1997).




.

5 Easy Frugality Ideas You May Not Be Us…

A frugal lifestyle is all the rage these days. So many YouTube personalities share how they manage to keep their living expenses low. At the same time, there are channels...

Increasing Productivity: How to Find the…

Perhaps one of the biggest reasons why some of the most starry-eyed individuals start to get disillusioned as time goes by is the tedium of what they have to do...

Sprout offers entrepreneurial accelerato…

Australian farm to fork agritech start-ups are being encouraged to come forward for the next cohort of the Sprout Accelerator.  The Sprout Accelerator benefits agritech & agrifood businesses and entrepreneurs who  have...

GoTheHand.com

A David and Goliath Battle Over Online Advertising – An Aussie Firm Taking on the Internet Giants An Australian company is taking on the might of tech giants like Google...

Essential Documents Typically Required f…

Photo Source: Lendi Applying for a home loan is often a lengthy, detailed process that requires you to review a variety of contracts, fees, and valuations. Along with these details, you...

What Is the Best Way to Start an eCommer…

Digital entrepreneurship has become very common in this day and age, and if you have been thinking about starting your own business, then you might be considering how you can...

22 costume ideas for kids this Halloween

Halloween 2018 is nearly here! Whether they’re having a dress-up day at school, or heading to a Halloween party, here are the best costume ideas for this year’s ghoulish event.1. ...

TRAVLR

Travel technology company TRAVLR gears up for its Series B raise   Australia’s leading travel technology company TRAVLR is gearing up for its Series B capital raise following the successful launch of...

How to Become an Ethical Hacker

If the idea of breaking into someone’s computer really excites you, but your moral compass steers you away from such ventures, there might just be a perfect job out there...

Benefits of having an ABN with a new car…

Finding the right car loan for you can be overwhelming. If you’re a sole trader, sub contractor or a small business owner, you might be wondering what the benefits are...

How to quarantine requirements when movi…

Whenever you travel across country in Australia there are quarantine requirements that you need to be aware of. Certain states and territories prohibit the entry of particular products that are...

How much can I borrow with bad credit?

There could be a number of reasons why you have bad credit. It can be frustrating when you’re trying to borrow money for a loan such as a car loan...

3 Digital Marketing Hacks To Give Your S…

Do you have plans of starting a company next year? Then good for you! A business is an excellent investment, and using digital marketing is one of the best ways...

Why Every Office Space Needs Ducted Air …

Many take ACs for granted. But once you learn about the many benefits that a reliable air conditioning system can give, you’d give more credit and appreciation to your units...

Three Australian businesses will receive…

GRANTS HELP TO HATCH BRIGHT IDEASThree Australian businesses will receive grants to commercialise new products, processes and services, helping to create more local business opportunities and Australian jobs.The grants from...

Basic Office Essentials Every Business N…

Are you an aspiring business owner? Then you should know by now that a brilliant idea, ample capital, goods and services, etc. are not the only things you need to...

Accrue Real Estate

It can be daunting taking your first steps on the property investment ladder. Everyone tells you it is a great way to secure a financial future and all the indications...

Lotus Trolley Bag

California Couple to Take on Australia's Plastic Waste Epidemic   More than 9.7 billion single-use plastic bags are used annually in Australia and only three per cent of them are properly recycled...

3 Powerful Forex Trading Strategies For …

What is a strategy? That is the first and most fundamental question you have to answer if you want to be successful in Forex Trading. A strategy is simply a well-thought-out...

Interested in Healthy Ageing?

We usually do notice, but the first biological signs that we are aging appear in our mid-20s. These changes become more apparent as we enter our 40s, and by the...

7 Ways to Tile Your Bathroom Without Bus…

Tile is great for bathrooms. It is attractive, resists humidity well, facilitates cleaning and rarely stains. Unfortunately, tile is expensive and the cost of tiling a whole bathroom can deplete...

Must have habits in a Forex trader

Success doesn't come easily and if it does, success will not have the reputation it has now. If you are looking for success you should wait for it. Don't ever...

River Rafting New Zealand: First Timer’s…

For travelers in search of the ultimate adventure, of course river rafting has long been providing great thrills to adventurous individuals the world over. One of the top places on...

A Smarter and More Sustainable Way to Cl…

It’s estimated there could be thousands of illegal dump sites across the country that are potential health and environmental hazards. SoilCyclers Alison Price said they can be anywhere and cost communities...