Constantly evolving technology is making communication in the workplace easier than ever. The methods are seemingly endless—face-to-face, over the phone, through email, by video conference, via chat or text, and more. But using the technology correctly can be a challenge.

Employees without the proper communication skills can feel overwhelmed, and that can impede productivity and job effectiveness.. For more on improving digital communication skills, keep reading.

Tips for better digital communication

  • Instant message: Instant messaging can be a fast and efficient way to ask questions or make requests. But there are important courtesies employees should remember. Make sure they ask co-workers if the timing is okay before they begin a chat. Encourage all workers to use their settings to show when they are available. Remind them with an imprinted privacy camera cover. Urge workers to keep chat messages brief, to the point and professional—in both vocabulary and topic.
  • Virtual meetings: Virtual meetings via video conferencing can save you time and money, but professionalism is still important. Make sure employees mute their microphones when they are not speaking to eliminate background noise. Require staff members to dress in meeting-appropriate attire, and make sure to clean off desks and tables to avoid distractions. Positioning web cameras at eye level will also help. Provide employees with ear buds or headphones to eliminate ambient noise.
  • Texting: Text messages are fast and easy, but it comes with its own set of rules. Always stress the importance of patience—employees should read a text as carefully as an email before hitting send. If they wouldn’t call on a weekend, after hours or late at night, they shouldn’t text then, either. Remind workers to be selective with emojis—your co-worker may appreciate the added emotion but a client may not. If texting is a big part of your office communication, provide a logo’d power bank so employees are always fully charged and available.

Communication technology can improve employee effectiveness and productivity, if it is used correctly. Remind employees of digital communication best practices by imprinting a list of tips on a branded gadget—a smartphone wallet or combo phone stand/screen cleaner are useful choices.

Improve digital communication and productivity with these helpful tips—and throw in some tech giveaways to drive your message home.

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