The 4 key steps of a communication audit

Type: Podcasts
By Caroline Cornell
6 October 2015
Zora Artis
Zora Artis

Are your communications really adding value? Without conducting regular audits or assessments, you can???t be certain. An audit, Zora Artis tells us, provides an objective picture of what is actually happening in the organization, rather than what we think is happening. Most importantly, it helps communicators understand how they are adding value and it can help spot areas for improvement.

“At the end of the day, it???s going to help you do a better job as a communicator and it increases your value to your organization, so I can???t see why you wouldn???t do it,??? shares Artis, founder of Zora Artis Consulting in Melbourne, Australia, in the latest episode of CW Radio.

But, where does one begin? Artis breaks the audit process down into four key areas, and explains them as follows:

1. Identifying and setting the scope and framework
To start, gain a thorough understanding of the organization and its strategy. More specifically, find out the issues the audit should investigate and understand what you are trying to achieve.

Also in this phase, Artis recommends gaining senior management buy-in, identifying your audiences and agreeing on a methodology.

2. Discovery process
This step is focused on research. Primary research could include interviews, focus groups, surveys, etc. Secondary research will primarily review paid, earned and owned media.

3.??Distillation process
The distillation process involves assessing the collected data. At this point, Artis says it???s important to identify patterns in your research and draw out key insights.

Finally, identify the communication gaps and opportunities. Review areas like message quality and delivery, the quality of relationships with audiences, and audience communication overall, Artis says.

Learn more

Listen to the complete interview below to hear case studies illustrating the bottom-line impact a proper communication audit can have on an organization.

You can review the #11ways research mentioned in the podcast here.

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Caroline Cornell

Caroline Cornell is associate editor for IABC’s content department.

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