Digital Workspace
June 16, 2023

How to Leverage Your Company's People Directory for Better Internal Communication

Did you know that companies with effective internal communication are 50% more likely to have lower employee turnover? 

In today's fast-paced world, maintaining strong communication within your team is crucial for success. One powerful tool that can help improve communication is your company's people directory. This often-underused resource can truly transform how your team members connect and collaborate.

In this guide, we’ll show you how to maximize the use of your people directory, ensuring smoother and more efficient communication across your organization.

Building an effective people directory 

Building an employee directory involves creating a list of all employees within an organization, their contact information, and any other relevant details such as job title and department. You can build your directory manually or use a specifically designed software app. It all depends on your business size, budget, and specific needs. 

Manually creating a people directory might include using spreadsheets, other digital documents, or even pen and paper for record-keeping. This process can be time-consuming and may require frequent updates as the information changes. As such, these strategies may not be suitable for larger companies and corporations

However, today you can build and manage your people directory with a software app. An employee directory software app can considate your people data from multiple sources into one place and is easily searchable, providing a more efficient and automated way to manage employee information and eliminating the need for manual employee record-keeping and file management. Moreover, the features of these software solutions greatly enhance communication, collaboration, and organization within a company.

Features of modern employee directories

Needless to say, modern employee directories are more than just a list of names and email addresses. They can include various features to enhance their usefulness and user experience. Some of these include:

  • Interactive profiles: Employee profiles can be made more interactive with multimedia elements like photos, videos, or audio clips. This can help showcase a person's personality and work style better.
  • Skill tags: Adding tags or keywords related to an employee's skills or expertise can make searching for specific talents within the team more efficient. This can also help in discovering hidden skills among team members.
  • Availability status: Integrating the employee directory with calendars or scheduling tools allows users to view their colleagues' availability in real-time. This can help reduce scheduling conflicts and make it easier to plan meetings or collaborations.
  • Project histories: A section for listing past and current projects can help others understand an employee's work experience and contributions. This can facilitate collaboration and spark new ideas for projects.
  • Instant messaging Integration: Linking the employee directory to a company's internal messaging platform can help streamline communication. Users can message or call colleagues directly from their profiles.
  • Employee recognition: Incorporating a feature to recognize or commend employees for their achievements can encourage a positive work culture and motivate team members to excel.
  • Customizable interface: Allowing users to personalize their directory view with filters, sorting options, or display preferences can improve the user experience and make it easier to find the information they need.
  • Organization chart: An interactive organization chart can provide a visual representation of the company hierarchy, making it easy to understand the structure and reporting lines. Users can see how teams and departments are organized, identify key stakeholders, and access their contact information quickly. 
  • Analytics: Incorporating analytics into the employee directory offers significant advantages by shedding light on employee engagement, expertise, and productivity. This information enables managers and team leaders to make well-informed choices regarding team composition, talent development, and the distribution of resources.
  • Virtual water cooler: Adding a social space within the employee directory for casual conversations, like sharing articles, discussing hobbies, or posting team updates can help foster a sense of community within remote teams.  

Simplify your company’s internal communication 

Internal communication is crucial for having a productive workplace. That’s why you need to consider a people directory that's integrated with your existing communication tools. By doing that, you can ensure that your team's interactions are more efficient. 

Connecting an employee directory with email or a messaging platform like Slack or Microsoft Teams can significantly improve your company’s collaboration. Imagine Sarah is working on a project and needs help from someone who's an expert in graphic design. She can easily search the people directory, find the right colleague, and start a conversation right away. This seamless integration helps your team communicate more effectively and speeds up project completion.

Another way of making the most from a people directory is to integrate it with a video meetings tool. Let’s say you’re on a video call with a number of coworkers and you’re struggling to identify who is who on the call. This is a very common issue, especially in huge corporations. But, a people directory app can be of huge help here. For example, Sift’s app for Microsoft Teams allows you to view Sift Profiles right in a meeting window, giving you a better understanding of your coworkers beyond their name, such as their skills, experience, and even what projects they are currently working on.  

Also, you can use your people directory to  streamline communication by adding links to coworker’s emails. When you find a coworker in your employee directory, you can just click on their email address to contact them right away. This not only saves time but also prevents sending important messages to the wrong person.

Ease collaboration for remote teams

An employee directory is a valuable tool for remote teams. It helps employees stay connected and informed, making communication and collaboration easier. Not being in an office means they can’t just turn to the person next to them to ask a question, so having a quick and easy way to get the information saves time and reduces frustration.

One way an employee directory helps remote teams is by providing easy access to contact information. For example, if a team member needs to reach someone for a project, they can find their email or phone number quickly, without having to ask around.

Another benefit is the ability to find teammates with specific skills or expertise. For instance, an employee might need help from a copywriter for a marketing campaign. By searching the directory with the keyword “copywriter,” they can find the right person and reach out directly. This streamlines workflow and increases efficiency.

An employee directory can also promote team bonding. For example, it may include personal interests or hobbies, which can spark conversations among coworkers. This helps to build relationships and create a sense of belonging within the team, even when working remotely.

Moreover, an employee directory assists in onboarding new employees. When someone new joins the team, they can refer to the directory and the organizational chart to learn about their colleagues and understand the team's structure. This makes it easier to connect with the right people and get up to speed quickly.  

Employee directory analytics

Some employee directory apps have built-in analytics features that might provide valuable insights into employee interactions, skill sets, performance, and engagement. Furthermore, leaders can use this data to make informed staffing decisions and when conducting a performance management review. Some of the insights might include: 

  • Skillset analysis: Understanding the distribution of skills within the team can help managers ensure that projects have the right balance of expertise and identify areas where additional training may be needed.
  • Staffing by location: Employee directory analytics also enable understanding of staffing distribution across various office locations. Leaders can evaluate if certain locations are over or under-staffed, and adjust recruitment strategies accordingly.
  • University alumni events: In certain office locations, there might be a high density of alumni from specific universities. Leveraging this, companies can organize networking events or career fairs that cater to these alumni, strengthening relationships and enhancing collaboration within the team.

Revolutionize your internal communication with a people directory

By leveraging the features of a modern people directory, such as interactive profiles, skill tags, and integration with your communication tools, your directory becomes a powerful tool that connects employees, reduces turnover, and fosters a strong company culture.

For remote teams, an employee directory is indispensable for promoting team bonding, streamlining workflows, and easing the onboarding process. A well-designed people directory is the game-changer your company needs for seamless internal communication and efficient collaboration – don't miss out on the opportunity to revolutionize your team's communication and collaboration.

About the Author: Yoshiro Kichiro

As a demand-gen specialist and copywriter, Yoshiro Kichiro is dedicated to helping businesses grow and thrive. With a deep understanding of persuasive language and data-driven decision-making, Yoshiro has developed successful campaigns for clients across a range of industries. In his free time, he enjoys travelling the world and experiencing new cultures.