Firms prefer direct approach to communication

It is generally accepted that good communication between management and workers is essential if that organisation is to function effectively.
The use of representative staff bodies, such as trade unions, was slightly less common in the UK (80%) compared to the other European countries, according to the Cranet Survey on International Strategic HR Management.

However, similar proportions (about 90%) communicated direct to their employees either verbally or in writing or used electronic communication or team briefings.

The countries did differ slightly more regarding the levels of employees that were informed about various business issues, including strategy, financial performance and organisation of work.

Most companies in all four countries briefed management about all of the issues. However, the UK and Sweden were more likely to brief professional, clerical and manual staff on these issues than organisations in France and Germany.

With regard to upward communication, UK employees most commonly communicate with their managers directly, through immediate supervisors, through workforce briefings or team meetings, or via electronic communication. Swedish companies generally used most channels of downward communication.

UK organisations are more similar to Sweden than their closer neighbours of Germany and France in the use of communication channels and keeping employees informed.

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