Videos on your employee app: how and why

Video is a critical medium for business communicators and HR professionals to reach, inform, educate, and engage their staff. Naturally, mobile consumption of video content is growing rapidly – and the ‘mobile moment’ lends itself to a ton of use cases for video content. So what about video within your employee app? Sitrion ONE’s got you covered. Here are a few guidelines on serving video content in your app and how to take advantage of all the features at your disposal. 
 

Tailor to the mobile device and experience


It’s a maxim of good communication: tailor the content to the medium. With mobile as your fastest growing means of communication (and responsible for half of all video views in 2016), it’s best to optimize video for your employee app and go from there. Your employee app takes care of some of the basics, and ensures that you’re able to leverage the native video controls of your phone’s operating system.

Keep content as short as possible, with a 60 second maximum. Remember that you’re not just catering to viewing on a mobile phone, but to the situations in which people are looking at their employee app. This is generally a short, away-from-desk moment in transit or waiting for another activity. The classic example I like to use is imagining someone waiting for an elevator – you’ll max out around a minute of attention.

Consider the aspect ratio and orientation of the video. 69% of all mobile devices are currently using a 16:9 landscape display ratio – fill it up! It’s a small screen to begin with, so real estate is precious. Figure out what kind of device is most common for your staff and go from there.

Use “macro shots” liberally. Macro shots are essentially super-closeup shots of small objects or actions. For whatever reason, this type of shot makes sense to our brains in a small-screen mobile context. A shot of a general activity may help set the context for your video. For example: is it a video about a new company facility that was completed? A nail being hammered in or an architect’s hand plotting across a blueprint may be a great opening title shot. Even if your video production is contracted out, it’s good to know the terminology and type of images you want to see.

Macro shots can convey a lot of thematic meaning- and they make random things look good!

Keep it personalized and measurable


Using an internally-managed platform for video lets you guarantee contextual relevance and accrue data for actionable reporting. Keep everything personally relevant to each employee by targeting your communications through mandatory groups and voluntary channels set up through your employee app.

Have your staff grouped by relevant dimensions – the most basic being department and geography. The more datapoints you have on each employee’s profile within the app – interests, experience level, skills – the more channels you can make to super-personalize your communication. The effects can range from obvious (don’t send a California safety video to the New York office) to the more subtle (show only new employees the CEO’s speech from last year’s company meeting).

Your employee app can tell you who watched the video, when, and for how long. You can break this down by group, department, region, etc, to understand what content is resonating with who. You cannot properly value what you cannot measure.
 

Leverage confirmation controls


Finally, the way to get the highest value out of video in your employee app is to couple it with confirmation controls. There are self-administration tasks like acknowledging new safety standards or other compliance necessities that are best consumed as video, but require a recorded assent from the employee that they’ve watched and understand the video. You can leverage your employee app’s confirmation card capability to get this feature attached to your videos.

Video is the content medium du jour, and will continue to grow as a way to effectively communicate with your staff. The moving picture on a mobile device holds an entire generation of incoming workers captive; as the Snapchatters infiltrate your employee base, they’ll expect to consume most of your communications through short video. Communicate effectively today and tomorrow by following these guidelines – and don’t forget to have some fun and get creative!

James Casagrande

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