Getting the message across - the importance of good communications
A HMRC case study

Page 5: Communicating the process of culture change

One of the Inland Revenue's biggest communications exercises recently has involved explaining to its staff the details and the implications of the organisation's ongoing culture change. This exercise in 'spreading the message' has involved approximately 80,000 staff based at over 150 sites across the UK. The key idea to put across was that the Inland Revenue has an increased emphasis on being truly customer-focused. Every member of staff needs to be familiar with and to understand the strategy, and wherever possible, to have the opportunity to discuss the changes. The initial communication exercise took place between November 2002 and March 2004. The key forms of communication were:

  • Face-to-face workshops for groups of employees. Some sessions involved as few as 8 staff. Others involved as many as 300. The workshops were run in four sessions/modules with a fifth module for managers. Specially prepared materials and activities were developed to communicate the key messages and to stimulate group discussions. These sessions were arranged flexibly to fit around employees' day time commitments.
  • Written booklets and a poster were produced for each of the modules.
  • The Inland Revenue's intranet was used to provide additional information, and feedback. For example, feedback from the trainers was published online.
  • CD ROMs were used to store PowerPoint slides and guidance for the facilitators who led the sessions.
  • A specially prepared video accompanied the first module.
  • Additional features and articles about the change process appeared in staff magazines.

HMRC | Getting the message across - the importance of good communications

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